Let’s face it, vinyl records are expensive and starting a good collection of wax can be tough. With the cost of a new vinyl record averaging around $23, it’s no wonder people stick to their iPods. But listening to music on vinyl is an experience only an audiophile appreciates. So if you’re looking for great vinyl on the cheap, here are four albums you can pick up for under $13.
Elliott Smith—”Introduction to Elliott Smith“
Elliott Smith is less of an artist and more of an institution. One of the pioneers of the anti-folk moment, Smith is a legend from the Seattle music scene. “Introduction to Elliott Smith” is just what it says it is—an introduction, not a greatest hits.
Smith’s music was never meant to be something you’d hear on the radio. His soft, under-confident tone nearly whispers his depressingly real lyrics. The hiss of the tape remains unfiltered, adding a lo-fi element, but also is a reason his music sounds so great on vinyl. This LP features 14 tracks, including an early recording of Smith’s most well-known song, “Miss Misery.”
Against Me!—”Transgender Dysphoria Blues“
Punk rock band Against Me! made headlines in 2012 when lead singer Tom Gabel came out publicly as transgender. Gabel transitioned to living as a woman and now goes by Lara Jane Grace.
Her transition sparked the fire which became the band’s sixth studio album, “Transgender Dysphoria Blues.” This album is an honest journey into the mind of Grace and her struggles—a story tailored to the listener; a perfect story for those passionate about the vinyl listening experience.
The Shins—”Chutes Too Narrow“
If you’re looking for an LP with zero filler, The Shins’ 2003 release, “Chutes Too Narrow,” is for you. One of the more popular acts in the Indie music scene, The Shins struck songwriting gold when they produced this album.
Charting on multiple “best of decade” lists, and containing some of the band’s best tracks ever, this thrifty gem is worth every penny.
Iron & Wine—”Our Endless Numbered Days“
Singer/songwriter Sam Beam is the lone member of the folk rock act Iron & Wine. Beam’s soothing vocals and bohemian instrumentals make “Our Endless Numbered Days” a worthy contender in the bargain bin.
This sophomore Iron & Wine release is perfect for those days you just want to put on a record and forget about life. Featuring an array of relaxing tunes, this LP provides the ability to cuddle up next to a great record and take a nice nap.