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E-books, schmee-books. This publisher is going vinyl.

October 25, 2012|By Carolyn Kellogg
  • The Five Dials record cover and a Five Dials launch, from left: Lambchop's Ryan Norris, Hollis Hampton-Jones, Hari Kunzru, Katie Kitamura, and Hamish Hamilton publisher Simon Prosser.
The Five Dials record cover and a Five Dials launch, from left: Lambchop's… (Five Dials )

British publisher Hamish Hamilton, which is behind the literary magazine Five Dials, is going where it has never gone before: to the record bin. The magazine has issued a limited-edition album, Five Dials 001.

The magazine's first-ever release on vinyl is, it says, "a 10-inch dub remix of Hollis Hampton-Jones' novel, 'Comes the Night.'"

Hold up: A dub remix of a novel? Hard to imagine. Luckily, they have a detailed description:

"For this one-off audio experiment, Hollis is backed by Ryan Norris, a member of the Nashville-based band Lambchop. The result is a swirling, moody epic, cut with static, with a fugitive melody or two smuggled into the mix by producer Roger Moutenot, who has previously worked with luminaries such as Yo La Tengo, Lou Reed, even Run-DMC. Audio books have never sounded quite like this."

Sounds a little like an indie band version of an audiobook. Or, come to think of it, exactly like an indie band version of an audiobook.

On the flip side of the record is an exclusive remix of the Lambchop song "Gone Tomorrow." Here are Soundcloud samples of both tracks.

Five Dials has always looked at publishing formats in an interesting way. It was founded in 2008 as an online magazine, but it doesn't have much of an Internet interface. That's because it's designed as a nice-looking printable PDF, which subscribers are meant to dowload, print, and carry with them, away from their computers.

Traditional issues of the magazine have included stories by Lydia Davis, an advice column by Alain de Botton, and works by Anton Chekhov, Leonard Cohen and Sam Lipsyte. One issue was devoted entirely to an essay by Nobel Prize-winning novelist Orhan Pamuk.

The new Five Dials 001 album is harder to come by. It can be found in only one record bin -- and unfortunately for us stateside, that's at theĀ Rough Trade East music shop in London.

ALSO:

Tom Perrotta on what makes a good short story [video]

Salman Rushdie's 'Midnight's Children' comes to screens

Margaret Atwood on her Byliner serial and dystopia fun [video]

Carolyn Kellogg: Join me on Twitter, Facebook and Google+

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