Archive for the ‘ Sweet Shops ’ Category

uReview: Your Record Stores


Record Store Day is this weekend and we thought we’d bring back this thread to hear about some new shops, stores not yet mentioned, openings, closings, stores from new readers etc. As before, if you mention a store, we’ll take care of the linking and mapping.

View Record Stores in a larger map

So, wherever you are, where are you going to be this Saturday to show your support for Record Store Day?

Record Store Day

Record Store Day

Tomorrow is the first annual Record Store Day. The official site explains it a little strange: “all of these stores will simultaneously link and act as one…” but to me the message is clear, get out there and do some record shopping. Doing this blog here, sometimes I get jaded, self-conscious, or uninspired, but I set foot in one of my favorite record stores and all the problems go away.

We link to online retailers quite a bit here, but I would always recommend buying locally first. And in the face of convenient internet downloads, record shops are beginning to need some grass roots support. So scrape up 30 or 50 bucks and a friend and binge on good vinyl tomorrow.

Record Store Day

Participating Retailers

Sweet Shops *The Best Record Stores* Ear X-tacy

Every time I’m in town I can’t leave without a trip to this shop. If you’re visiting Louisville for the first time, skip Fourth Street Live and head straight to where the real action is. Nestled amongst gorgeous residential neighborhoods and Olmstead’s Cherokee Park is Bardstown Road, the go-to thoroughfare for night life and home to one of my favorite record dealers, Ear Extacy.

The shop is great for one of the best reasons, it turns you on to new stuff. I bought my first T-Rex album here because they had a special promotion on ‘classic albums’ (including others I had known already like Forever Changes and This Years Model). A store you can trust, where the sales folk might even compliment your picks, is a hard find. Basically all you could want is stuffed up in their shelves: vinyl reissues, a pop/rock section with quality selections from modern and vintage standpoints, fresh used bins right up front, and a real deal dedicated bluegrass shelf that always gets my fingers flipping.

As I said, this is one of my favorite shops for the very reason that you know you’re going to come out of there with something great that you could have never predicted. Don’t miss it. Any Louisville readers out there? Go Cards; final four next year.

Ear X-tacy
1534 Bardstown Road
Louisville, KY 40205

Sweet Shops *Best Record Stores* Rockit Scientist and Eat Records

Visiting NYC soon? Here are two recommended record buying locations that are easy to miss but well worth the visit.

Rockit Scientist Records
East Village, New York

Rockit Scientist

Down the street from Kim’s on St. Marks Place hides the gem of all NYC record dealers. Prepare for weakened knees when you first set foot in this shop with its expansive CD wall, boasting scores of album covers you never thought you’d actually find in a brick and mortar store. The CD shelves are well designed, making it easy to flip through some Yardbirds or Downliners Sect reissues seamlessly hopping back to the Byrds/Gene Clark section. The upper shelf highlights featured albums like Roy Wood’s Boulders and Odessey & Oracle; you can easily retrieve the case and inspect the liner notes, as all the actual discs are stored up front.

I mainly use the CDs as inspiration in the hunt for vinyl. The back section stores loads of HTF wax, originals and reissues mixed together. They know how much their records are worth at Rockit Scientist, but I find pricing to be about as fair as eBay or other online dealers (minus shipping). While flipping through, you’ll find a few jaw-droppers for ‘next time’ but the discerning taste of this shop ensures you can’t go home with a bad record. Vinyl is categorized by genre including rock, psych, prog, soul, jazz, Brazilian, punk, etc. Don’t forget to check out the walls and ceiling for some desirable gems.

Kudos to Rockit Scientist for their dedication to gems of the past and classic music in general. Fans of will easily spend hours in this sweet, sweet shop.

Rockit Scientist
33 St. Marks Place
New York, NY 10003

Eat Records
Brooklyn, New York

Eat Records

Here’s a good visit for record hounds and foodies alike. Eat Records delivers what it sounds like, a bite to eat and shelves of used vinyl to flip through. The picture above shows Eat Records before they recently underwent renovation, cutting down on the amount of shelves and increasing the dining area. I find this to be a little unfortunate, but there are enough gems scattered throughout, and hardly any filler, that I will keep coming back.

Maybe it’s a little awkward geeking through a stack of records in a room filled with dining hipsters, but when you can get VG copies of Mendocino or Up Through The Spiral for around $10 AND a sandwich this good, Eat Records is just too cool to pass up.

Eat Records
124 Meserole Ave
Greenpoint, Brooklyn

Sweet Shops *The Best Record Stores*: Amoeba Music

Many folks are downloading their music these days, but even the strictest digital librarians will drop a little dough on a multi-album binge at their favorite record shop. In the Sweet Shops series, we are going to feature some of the best record stores we have found that are still kicking today, and that we hope will survive well into this cold and digital future.

These retailers carry music classic and contemporary, new and used, vinyl and CD; and of course, you’ve got to have a shot at finding a gem! We start with the big mama:

Amoeba Music
Los Angeles, California

amoeba music


It’s the Mecca of record stores. Based in Los Angeles, (with other smaller stores in San Fransisco and Berkeley) Amoeba Music is a well-oiled machine of record buying. You find yourself making a weekly trip, trying to limit your selections to just one handful, hilariously justifying that box set tucked under your arm. This picture makes it look large but it’s actually much bigger, including a football field sized room for jazz, an upstairs area with DVDs and listening stations, and dedicated sections for each genre that are often the size of your typical CD shop. The classic concert posters and memorabilia tacked all over the walls make it a sight to see and a must-visit for Hollywood tourists.

What I would try to do when I lived in LA was scan the New section for something I’d want, then check the Used section to see if it was there for cheaper. Most Used sections can be tedious, but Amoeba’s constant flow of record trading keeps the shelves pretty fresh.

Amoeba Music recently introduced themselves as a record label, releasing a fine choice in The Flying Burrito Brothers Live at the Avalon, a live set with Gram Parsons. Perhaps Amoeba can set a model for record shops to follow if they are successful in this venture.

When I’m in town, you’ll find me in the pink section.

Amoeba Music
6400 Sunset Boulevard
Hollywood, California

Next time we’ll take it home to NYC with two sweet under-the-radar shops.