Bicep Among Artists Featured on World’s First Plant-Based Vinyl Record
Vinyl is not the most energy-efficient music format, as some have recently pointed out. Music Declares Emergency (MDE) is working to remedy this. The environmental advocacy group claims to be releasing the world’s first plant-based, bioplastic vinyl record that includes a track by none other than Bicep.
U.K. label Ninja Tune donated “Atlas” off the Belfast duo’s 2021 album Isles for the tracklist of the four-song EP. The rest came courtesy of non-dance music artists Porridge Radio, Angel Olsen, and Black Country, New Road, all of whom are signed to U.S. label Secretly. The bioplastic vinyl is the flagship product of sustainability initiative Evolution Music.
MDE has launched a campaign on Crowdfunder to raise money for their operations and will give 20 of the records away to donors. Every £5 donated earns its contributor a single prize draw, and there’s no limit to entries.
Vinyl record sales ballooned from $619.6 million in 2020 to over $1 billion in 2021, according to the Recording Industry Association of America. In his 2019 book Decomposed, Kyle Devine draws attention to the massive amounts of toxins released into the atmosphere from the manufacture of PVC for vinyl records.
Bicep (real names Andrew Ferguson and Matthew McBriar) formed in 2009, raising their public profile with a music blog called Feel My Bicep. They released on labels like Throne of Blood, Traveller Records, and Mystery Meat before their self-titled debut album landed on Ninja Tune in 2017. Both Ninja Tune and Secretly are longtime supporters of MDE, according to the Crowdfunder page.
At the time of writing, the fundraiser campaign for the first-ever bioplastic vinyl release is just shy of £1,000 with a goal of £2,000. Find more information on the four artists involved and donate to the cause via Crowdfunder.