Interview with LAURA KERKHOFS, Record Collector from Belgium

Laura Kerkhofs, a record collector from Belgium

Laura Kerkhofs aka cinnamon_girl95 is a 22 years old Belgian who loves metal and records. She started her vinyl collection not so long ago. Besides being a music lover and collector, Laura is a music reviewer for Grimm Gent. One of her goals is to kick off a label/distro.

In a new interview in our “Record Collectors” series, Laura tells us about her vinyl collection.

How did you go about starting your vinyl collection, and how long has it been since you are a record collector?

When I was in primary school I used to sleep over at my uncles every weekend. He’s a record and movie collector himself and even once built an extra real house (not just a shed) in the garden for his collection. He listens to a lot of classic and hard rock, but also artists like Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra etc. He was and still is a big influence to me. He even buys and gives me records almost monthly, but only from artists that he thinks aren’t too heavy (laughs). The coolest records he gave me were an original Oz’s Fire In The Brain on Combat Records and the Type O Negative Dead Again boxset. At home there was always country and rock ‘n roll music playing. I’ve always been surrounded by music and records, but I only started collecting myself about 2 years ago.

Oz - Fire in the Brain
OzFire in the Brain (Photo: @cinnamon_girl95)

What was the first vinyl you bought or received?

During high school I bought a lot of CD’s. My first CD was Hatebreed’s Perseverance. Back then I used to listen to a lot of hard rock and heavy metal, but I started listening more to hardcore as well. Then I bought some 7-inches at hardcore shows, although my first 12-inch was the Gardens of Grief EP by At The Gates. Today I don’t really listen to hardcore anymore, but I still go to shows from time to time. Right now my focus lies on death metal.

At the GatesGardens of Grief (Photo: @cinnamon_girl95)

How large is your vinyl collection?

Honestly I hate it when people ask me this question. The amount of records you own simply means nothing. You can own a hundred records you once got from a wholesale you never listen to in your collection or you can have less records in total but which you all cherish. I don’t know how many records I own to be honest, I don’t keep a list.

How do you go about choosing which record will have a place in your collection? Do you usually check new albums online, or do you grab a record just “out of the blue,” or it’s a mixed bag of these two?

When it comes to older albums, I only buy records I listened to before. When I buy new releases, bands mostly already posted at least one track online, which makes me decide if I will buy or preorder it. Sometimes I buy record out of the blue when I’m a big fan of a band and just want to have everything by them.

Where from do you get your records usually?

I mostly go to stores and fairs. You can almost find me every week at one of those. I usually go to Antwerp, the city where I also go to college, but I also go to other countries to visit stores and fairs. I prefer this over online shopping because it’s much more fun in all kind of ways. When I buy records online, I’d rather order them from the labels themselves or from friend’s labels with a great distribution collection. I’m not really a fan of Discogs. I’d also like to give a shout out to Everlasting Spew Records here, the italian Giorgio behind this, is the kindest person to work with.

What is the most valuable record in your collection? And do you have sort of a wishlist with records that you want to get one day?

My most valuable record is my original October Rust pressing. I’m a huge Type O Negative fan and the album itself costed me my allowance for two months back then. I just had to have it. I have a wishlist on paper, but I actually never really use it. There’re still so many record I need and it’s makes just an endless list.

Type O Negative‘s October Rust (Photo: @cinnamon_girl95)

Tell me about your turntable setup (turntable, preamp, speakers,…).

I spin my records on a Lenco L-90 turntable, which I got from my uncle. My amp is an Onkyo TX-SR875 and my CD-player is an Onkyo DX-C390, it’s a CD changer which makes room for 6 discs. My speakers are standing ones, called Pioneer S-31-LR-K. My uncle helped me out when I wanted this new setup, he’s a real audiophile so that made it a lot easier. Currently I’m really happy with this setup.

Do you have any advices for people that are about to start or just started collecting vinyls?

Be patient and do your research!

Follow Laura on Instagram.

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