Detroit has a long and storied musical history, spanning from the sounds of Motown in the 60’s, the distorted sounds of Garage Rock in the 70s’ and the beats of Techno from the 80s until today. In the past, Detroit was also home to many record pressing plants to keep up with the industry. As times changed, and we changed the way we consume our music, leaving behind the warm sounds of analog for the often tinny sounds of digital, record pressing plants fell like one after another. Today, only Archer Record Pressing lives on.
Archer was started in 1965 by Norman Archer. Archer Record Pressing had a hand in pressing many of the Motown, Northern Soul, and Rock records that came out of Detroit in the 60s and 70s, but is most notable to readers of this as pressing some amazing Detroit Techno. Iconic tracks from Model 500, Suburban Knight, Mike Huckaby, Rhythim is Rhythim, Delano Smith, and the late Aaron Carl were put to wax at Archer.
From a perspective of industry standards, it’s more than obvious that we are living in post-vinyl days. Shopping for music to most people involves clicking a mouse and instant gratification. For audiophiles, record collectors, and those who love the experience of finding new music the old school, or “analog”, way, vinyl will live on, even if only in a niche sense. Will Archer Record pressing live on? By some stroke of luck, and through the collective love of Techno vinyl junkies everywhere, it may continue to carry us into the future as the last of a great thing.
Please take a moment and check out this video about the last surviving record pressing plant in Detroit.