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Simon says

While 2019 has been an unsettling year in many, many ways, Bella Union’s roster of artists has produced some memorable highlights

Only when you look back at a year do you start to see the obvious patterns, threads weaving seamlessly through the tapestry. Maybe everyone else saw them but you did not. But now, with the perspective of review, a bit like when you clean your smudged glasses, a lot more comes into focus.

And so it is with 2019, in one way, one of the ugliest years in recent memory, blighted by the state of the nation and the disappearance of society as I hoped it once but maybe never was. Yet, Greta Thunberg grasped the nettle and took on the world, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Tabata Amaral stood up and told it like it is, Owl Fisher campaigned to create more positive representations of transgender people in the media, Sinéad Burke called out designers of homes to make them more accessible to disability and to clothes designers to make clothing more inclusive. In every corner of this planet, incredible women were at the forefront in trying to create systematic change, and whatever the outcome of the General Election, there seems to be finally some fight left in this old dog. All of a sudden, I see it vividly.

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About Long Live Vinyl

Issue 34 of Long Live Vinyl is now on sale! Farewell to 2019! Our massive end-of-year special rounds up the very best of the year in vinyl. First up, we bring you the top 100 new albums of the last 12 months, selected by an expert panel of record shop owners, labels, bands, writers and festival organisers. Once you've filled your Christmas list with that lot, we've picked the top 20 reissues of 2019. You'll find interviews with some of the heroes of the year, too, including Fontaines DC, The Specials, Amyl & The Sniffers, Weyes Blood, Bill Callahan and The Murder Capital. If you're on the lookout for a new turntable, amp, speakers or headphones for Christmas, you'll want to check out our extensive Gear Of The Year awards, and after more than 10,000 of you voted, we name our second annual Record Shop Of The Year. Pick up your copy to find out who's won! In other news, former Led Zeppelin legend Robert Plant sits down for a chat about his new boxset and podcast, while Beck opens up about his latest album, Hyperspace. We also reminisce with The Pop Group over their classic 1979 album Y and tell the story of the label that brought us Love, The Doors and MC5: the one and only Elektra Records. If all that's not enough, you'll find the widest range of vinyl-related news, features and reviews anywhere on the newsstand. Long Live Vinyl is THE magazine for Vinyl lovers.