Vineta-Rekord (Germany) / c. 1905

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Design: The 'posterized' illustration was evidently printed from a zinc engraving, using photographic line artwork, as distinct from most illustrations of the time, which were hand-drawn. However, it seems to have been pasted-up rather awkwardly. Three generations of listeners (possibly representing a grandfather, a married couple and their young son) appear to be leaning forward, listening intently to the sounds emanating from the horn of a gramophone, although it faces away from them. Also, the hand cupped to the old man's left ear does not really fit in too well with the rest of his body.

However, in its bold simplicity and directness, in an era when most other illustrated labels were filled with sentiment or fussy ornament, the design is well ahead of its time, and loses nothing by being printed in a single colour.

The lettering used for the label name features 'Latin' or triangular serifs, one of several distinct families of type design that were developed in the typographic chaos of the Victorian era (slab or 'Egyptian' serifs, 'stub' or rounded serifs, 'Tuscan' or split serifs and 'sans' or serifless letterforms were others).

In the imprinted area in the lower segment there are other examples of Victorian-era inventiveness: extremely condensed fonts and wide or expanded ones, as well as bold and light versions of type, which printers would often use without restraint.

The song title translates as Return of the Kaiser from the Parade, which speaks of the militaristic nature of much of the recorded offerings prior to WWI. The name 'Vineta' refers to a mythical city on the Baltic coast, though there are several connections to that name in the city of Berlin.

History: Unknown (have info? Send to Label scan courtesy of collector Helmut Janisch of Germany.

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