Lonely Planet Writer

Dublin celebrates its musical history with a 'vinyl walkway' of popular albums

A new installation that showcases Ireland’s rich musical history has been unveiled in Dublin. Called the Vinyl Walkway, it comprises two installations that feature the vinyl sleeves of 21 famous albums embedded into the ground. The albums were recorded at the iconic Windmill Lane Recording Studios in Dublin’s South Docks, before it re-located to Ringsend.

Clannad singer Moya Brennan unveiled an installation  of 21 of the most famous albums recorded at Windmill Lane Studios. Image: Jason Clarke.

Among the featured albums are six by U2 that were recorded and mixed at the studios, including The Joshua Tree and Achtung Baby. The other installation contains the vinyl sleeves of 15 albums that were picked to reflect the extraordinary breadth of material created at the studios. These include Irish Heartbeat by Van Morrison and the Chieftains, Spike by Elvis Costello, Never Too Late by Status Quo and Hysteria by Def Leppard. Other artists featured include Kate Bush, Phil Lynott, the Waterboys, the Chieftains, Vinnie Kilduff, Planxty, James Galway and the Chieftains, Gilbert O’Sullivan, Bill Whelan and Elmer Bernstein.

The vinyl walkway with 21 album sleeves from albums recorded at Windmill Lane Studios. Image: Jason Clarke

Moya Brennan of Clannad officially opened the walkway, and her band’s album, Magical Ring, is also included. The album covers are embedded beneath perspex glass and will be lit so they can be viewed at night. A planned series of Windmill Live concerts will also take place, and the Vinyl Walkway and concert series are initiatives by property company Hibernia REIT to recognise the musical legacy of the location. The studios are regarded as central to the development of an internationally successful music culture in Ireland.

A vinyl walkway has opened at Windmill Lane Studios. Image: Jason Clarke.

“Windmill Lane was the place where so many Irish and international artists created wonderful music that has survived the test of time,” says Irish minister for culture, heritage and the Gaeltacht, Josepha Madigan TD. “It is appropriate and welcome that this legacy is remembered, and the Vinyl Walkway is an innovative visual tribute for future visitors to Windmill Lane to enjoy.”