Return Of The Vinyl (Part II)

We collected some serious loot from this vinyl trek. While we were vinyl-shy last month, we sure returned with much finesse this round. We may have ended up with empty pockets at the end of the day but hey, we can get back that money via employment and such. Also, having a rare bootleg Joy Division in my collection, that’s gonna be forever. Another successful vinyl day out, we went to some new places and returned to some previous ones, because it felt like home already and most importantly, we parted with some money in exchange for good music. Always a pleasure.

Hear Records

Further than the usual vinyl record precinct, Hear Records is located opposite Sim Lim Square. With some turntables we’d take ages to save up to afford lined up at the window, a shelf full of books on music and music history and a listening corner that looked pretty damn cosy, the store was rather posh looking and the neatest record one we’ve been to. We entered quite gingerly led by the very excited Daniel Peters aka vinyl aficionado aka music renaissance man who was about to make a very exciting purchase – Slint’s Spiderland for $20. Good record for a great price, +10. Soon, we were also making purchases of our own. Barely ten minutes and we had already succumbed, picking out Amok by Atoms For Peace and the feel-good Brothers by The Black Keys. There is one thing about all vinyl store owners, they’re all really crazy about music and their music knowledge is as boundless as the sea. That was how we ended up hanging around talking to owner, Nick about Metallica, best concerts, good albums, bad albums, local music and the vinyl collecting scene in Singapore.

For The Record

Nice pun on the store name. Owner, Giri has so many records that he had to move to a new store. We met him at the new place where everything looked less cluttered, still a little messy but at least it was ‘organised mess’. Playing loudly on the speakers was some Billie Holliday. Enjoying the music, sitting on an ottoman in the middle of the store, it really felt like a Saturday all of a sudden. For The Record is truly the store you go to if you’re an old soul. None of them recent releases here but if you’re looking for important Beach Boys’ records, Simon and Garfunkel, Francoise Hardy, The Beatles, Broadway music, even classical music, this is your go to place. Trivia: Also for sale at this store is an $8000 record, you should ask the owner to show it to you. The place may have records all over the place but ask Giri for the title and he shuffles off to find it for you almost immediately. Super ace.

Roxy Records

Probably the only record store I’ve been in that was silent, no music playing on the speakers. Pity, because they have quite a large collection of music. New hip-hop, old school rap, The Smiths, 60s pop, Teochew opera, Colbie Caillat, Alan Parsons Project, metal – loads. Still, I’m pretty fond of this shop because it was the first time I got to know of I Am David Sparkle. The great thing about Roxy is that they stock up on releases by local artists, as well as promote local gigs. Also, this is the only record store we have been to that has music on the mediums of vinyl, CD and cassette. Thing is, we all at Roxy because we were on a quest. We received some intelligence from a contact about a certain bootleg record of the Joy Division show in Paradiso, Amsterdam in the year 1980. We hunted it down, acquired it and after some cash exchange, I was one of 500 people who have in their possession a copy of this bootleg. Yey.

And of course we concluded our vinyl trek at Vinylicious. Pretty much everyone was there as well. Familiar faces, music we likes, CK the owner updating us on new stock, it was like going home after a long day out. Popular that day was Converge’s Jane Doe, a copy of which we acquired as well. Also making a warm welcome to our fast-growing collection was our first post-rock purchase, Explosions In The Sky’s Earth Is Not a Cold Dead Place, who we hear might just be heading this way some time at the end of the year (ah, rumours). As usual, there would be a listening session around the communal turntable as we put on Converge, Frank Sinatra, Slint, Joy Division, basically everything we purchased that day was eligible to be played. If you don’t think dancing to Joy Division or starting a moshpit to Frank Sinatra was possible, you should really pay a visit to Vinylicious. Halfway mid-Ian Curtis impersonation, CK came up with a wild idea to have a Joy Division themed event… you gotta stick around Bandwagon for more details on that one soon! 

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