I consume a lot of new music on a daily basis. While, a majority of this music consists of DJ mixes and other digital media that I can peruse and download at my leisure online, I make a conscious effort to make sure a good part of my musical intake is pulled from analog sources. Buying techno and house records online is so easy, it almost takes all the fun out of the process of seeking out new music in the vinyl format. This is why I find myself drawn back again and again to my favorite local record store.
Local is a bit of a stretch of the word, since my favorite “local” record store is a 20 minute drive from my home. However, with the number of actual record retailers falling further and further every year, it’s about as local as a store as you can get for buying house and techno records.
As I have written in past posts, I love going off the beaten path and taking adventurous routes to finding electronic vinyl. In this regard, it’s equally amazing to go to a place where all the records are in neat order according to genre, where I can sort through them with minimum effort. At the local record store, I can leave behind all the junky albums of the thrift stores and flea markets and know I am looking through stacks of only house and techno. And of course, there are always those unsorted boxes of records against the wall in case I get the digging itch.
Cost is always a factor in shopping local for records as well. Buying vinyl online is super pricey, and if you add shipping, getting a stack of new records can be a small investment. My local vinyl spot always has unbeatable prices, especially on newer Detroit Techno. And the more records I buy, the better the discount tends to be.
The personal experience of acquiring your music in a physical sense is always a factor that makes me want to visit the local record store. Holding a record in my hand. Looking at the artwork. Appreciating every groove of the vinyl. These are experiences that are lost in the online record shopping trip. The local record store will always win in this sense, and always keep me coming back for more.