Sony Music is set to resume pressing records after nearly 30-years hiatus and operations are expected to pick back up by March 2018. The Japan record giant is opening a new record-pressing plant in response to the country’s growing consumer interest in vinyl, the Nikkei Asian Review reports.
Pressing is expected to commence in the Shizuoka Prefecture, located southwest of Tokyo. It signals the end of a nearly 30-years disappearance after Sony Music Japan initially shut down its in-house pressing operation in 1989 upon the advent of the CD.
However, as vinyl has over the last decade made a comeback worldwide, so too has the medium gained popularity in Japan; as Nikkei noted, vinyl sales in the country have “roughly octupled” from 2010 to 2016. But at the moment, Japan has only one active manufacturer, which means the demand outweighs the supply, resulting in limited new releases. This bottleneck production can also have adverse effects on independent labels and distributors, as we reported last year.
For now, Nikkei reported, Sony plan to repress “popular older songs, “mainly Japanese music to which Sony already hold the rights, as well as recent hit albums. To help cope with the high demand, Sony will also accept orders from outside labels.