Every so often you happen upon something you wish you had thought of yourself. I recently had that experience when Pete Astor, author of the forthcoming 33 1/3 on Richard Hell and the Voidoids, pointed me in the direction of Classic Album Sundays. It’s basically a brilliant, tricked-out record listening club started by audio geeks. And Classic Album Sundays are serious about sound – the founders have spent years perfecting a sound system optimized for vinyl listening (the way most of the music covered was intended to be listened to.) They do a much better job explaining the concept on their site.
The host of each monthly event (in London, New York and coming to other cities this year) introduces the album with a thorough history and a sampling of influences and contemporaries. Then, the album is played straight through- no talking. Cell phones must be off and no drinks can be ordered during the full listening of the album. It’s a gathering for music lovers and devotees of a particular album- basically a real, live 33 1/3 book! Check their website for upcoming events in your city!
They also have a great documentary series on youtube.