Record Store Day is just like Christmas: except instead of a jolly, bearded fellow called Santa, you have three rocking, bearded guitarists called ZZ Top, instead of elves you have The Pixies; and instead of toys, you have vinyl records. Lots and lots of records in all their myriad forms, 7, 10, 12, singles, remixes, albums, coloured vinyl, limited print runs, and not forgetting their excellent cover artwork!
While some see Record Store Day (or RSD as the faithful call it) as a way of bringing this glorious music format back into our lives, its worth noting that the majority of participating stores in Brisbane have been here for a long time – and the new ones have a history.
You cant ignore the big guns of Brisbane record shops, the three Rs: Rocking Horse, Rockaway Records, and The Record Market. Whether they sell brand new releases or second-hand treasures, youll find they all boast a plethora of international indie releases and a lovingly curated tome of local gems, just waiting to be discovered.
Now in its 42nd year, the granddaddy of the river city continues to be a haven in the CBD for audiophiles – just across from King George Square youll find new items at the front and a treasure trove of wax, CDs, t-shirts and collectables waiting for you in the rear.
245 Albert Street, Brisbane QLD 4000 | (07) 3229 5360
Nestled in the comfy air-conditioning of the mega Carindale Westfield is another stalwart of the local scene, now also offering Funko Pop! in their pop culture paraphernalia range. Their enormous vinyl collection encompasses the shiny brand-new releases, to rare collectables, and quality second-hand records, providing you with plenty of options.
Westfield Shopping Centre, 1151 Creek Road, Carindale QLD 4152 | (07) 3395 4707
Back in the CBD is Australias largest new and used record store – with thousands of DVDs, over 10000 CDs, and more than 250,000 records, its best to set yourself a time limit before entering – otherwise, you may never be seen again. Its a bit like Disneyland, or a maze. The trick is to plan out a route and stick to it – maybe youre searching for a particular artist, or go for a genre. Just dont leave breadcrumbs to help find your way out. The staff can get hungry.
Level 1, 65 Adelaide Street, Brisbane QLD 4000 | (07) 3229 4923
Thanks to Record Store Day, its now even easier to find a local to call your own – they include all bricks and mortar stores whose focus is on the recorded music specialist store experience. So to complete your list of real, live, indie record stores, be sure to check out the following!
Theyre new, but theyre old – born from the ashes of the fabled Skinnys – the Sherpas set up shop a few years back to help guide you through the many peaks of independent Aussie bands – with a very healthy Brisbane representation. Their in-stores are always on the to-do list, and they keep a close eye on releases matching local festivals (like Splendour In The Grass, Falls Festival, and CMC Rocks).
360/12 Stones Road, Stones Corner QLD 4120 | (07) 3397 0180
Pop a suburb over into West End for another in-store loving destination – helping the locals with their sonic needs for over 30 years; the cats are always on the ball for the latest releases. West Ends friendly community vibe permeates the wooden record shelves and gives you a good reason to pop in for the most recent music zine or JBCM tea towel.
72 Vulture Street, West End QLD 4101 | 0419 571 299
The other side of the city shows two different takes of record stores, with Phase 4 being an outlet for their label: LCMR. Alongside the stores kitsch collectables, second-hand LPs and cassettes, and music memorabilia are LCMRs new releases from Brisbane musicians like Ed Kuepper. So if youre looking to support truly homegrown talent, be sure to head down Bakery Lane.
Bakery Lane, 680B Ann Street, Fortitude Valley QLD 4006 | (07) 3061 3108
Taking the sale of, and original creation of music to its ultimate conclusion is our final Valley stop: Tym Guitars. The impressive range of handcrafted, vintage, and second-hand guitars, basses, amps and effects pedals is supplemented by a hire range, practice rooms, and (wait for it) a full digital multi-track recording studio! Thats before you even start looking through their vinyl collection of new independent musicians or being serenaded by the latest in-store performance on their full-size stage, oh, and of course, Tym also has their own label. Is it too good to be true? Thats for you to decide. Mosey on down and tell them Postcoder sent you.
5 Winn Street, Fortitude Valley QLD 4006 | (07) 3161 5863
A final note – not to leave our northern cousins on the outer – Redcliffe has its vinyl oasis tucked away in an arcade just off the main strip. Not just a destination for locals craving new and used records, but a necessary stop for anyone wanting a cool drink and music knowledge on tap with Woody. Well worth the trip.
Shop 9, Jetty Arcade, 141 Redcliffe Parade, Redcliffe QLD 4020 | 0422 050 100