Record Store Day (RSD) has been a thing for a few years now. I don’t really need a good reason to go record shopping, but I’ll take any excuse I can get.
I’m not really into the exclusive nature of the RSD releases, take for instance one release for 2017:
For the first time on vinyl: The Cure’s greatest hits (and an acoustic version) – on bloody picture disk. What a joke. It’s common knowledge that picture disks suffer from poor audio fidelity owing to how they are made. Why would you put The Cure’s greatest hits.. first time on vinyl.. on an f—ing picture disk?
…..and I’m not really much into brand new vinyl at all – unless it’s a new album from a current band. I strongly prefer original releases or later re-pressings for two reasons:
- Nostalgia. Second hand records belonged to someone else, and in some cases could be up to or over 50 years old. It’s nice to own something pre-loved (or abused in some cases) that has a story to tell., and
- Price. Often you can acquire a 2nd hand LP for less than a new repressing
Having said that, I’ll sometimes acquire a newer release (so-called ‘audiophile pressings’) because I’m curious whether it’s been mastered better than an earlier pressing, or because I can get it at a reasonable price.
At any rate, yesterday was RSD and I took advantage of it. The day started at Songland at Cooleman Court, but they didn’t have the RSD exclusive I wanted. Next stop – slightly delayed by putting my car in for new tires in Philip – was Landspeed Records in Civic. The event there was poorly managed, they had 2,000 2nd hand LPs out front, but people had to go inside to pay. They only had one cashier and the store was full of people trying to acquire the RSD exclusives (inside). It took an hour to make a single purchase – a normal RRP 12” single (Tool, Opiate) and a repress by The Cure.. reduced to $25 which is hard to argue.
After that ordeal (the last time I’ll do that) we had lunch in the food court and then went back to Philip. I stuck my head into Duratone Records and got the deal of the day – an original pressing of AC/DC "For those about to rock" in VG+ condition (cover “Fair” – water damaged) for $10! I have a copy already, but always good to speculate when you can.
Finally, after picking up the car, a trip south to Kambah to Dynomite Records where I picked up the lion’s share of the day. A number of Australian pressings – The Clash (*first* and second albums), plus a late 70s pressing of Bowie’s Aladdin Sane, as well as a Tom Waits composition from 1981 (a collection of hits from his first few albums).
I returned later in the day to be in the running to win a pair of $500 speakers, but was unlucky.
Ultimately, I spent more at my “local” (Dynomite, a proper second hand record store) rather than at the stores that mainly focus on new vinyl like Songland and Landspeed. In fact, I’m a bit pissed that Landspeed purposely withholds second hand vinyl to save it up for Record Store Day, it makes the venture into the store on other days really kind of useless for me. I’ve actually picked up more vinyl from The Green Shed underground (a place that sells stuff from the tip) in the past 12 months than from Landspeed.
- Songland, Cooleman Court, Weston Creek
- Landspeed Records, Garema Place, Civic
- Duratone Records, Philip
- Dynomite Records, Kambah Shopping Village
A photo summary:
The best bargain from RSD 2017: