Woke up early, but not by default, just that this new job I have has me waking up early every day. I just can’t seem to stay asleep… but that’s not important right now… records are. And here we are once again, the annual celebration of the independent record store that falls on the second Saturday of April each year. Now 4 years strong, the phenomenon of scouring record stores for records you like has people once again embracing the spirit of owning a vinyl album. This is how my RSD (Record Store Day) went:

Thornbury Records (591 High Street, Thornbury –
I had never been to Thornbury Records before which was a huge loss on my part as not only is it run by an actual musician but the staff at Thornbury Records are also nice people. They opened at 11am and once the doors opened, I managed to secure a copy of The Black Angels ‘Phosphene Nightmare’ on 10” white vinyl.

Polyester Records (387 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy –
Headed to the city and thought I’d pop in to Polyester Records as I hadn’t been there in yonks but thought that since it was in Brunswick St, they may have catered for the hipsters which meant the one record I was searching for, ‘David’s Town’ by the band Fucked Up may just be waiting there for me. I parked (possibly illegally, I wasn’t sure, I couldn’t see a sign) and waltzed in. Heading for the counter, everyone was milling around the RSD releases that were on the counter. To be quick (due to my unsure parking skills) I simply asked “Do you have a copy of David’s Town by Fucked Up?” and the dude says “yeah, there should be 1 copy there”. The dude who was flicking through the records stopped flicking and said “there ya go, have a look…” What a top chap! He let me flick through and there it was… *yoink* MINE! I paid my cash and walked out with smiles on my face. Walked outside, got to my car, no ticket. The consensus at this point: so far, the day was pretty awesome.

Heartland Records (61 Peel Street, West Melbourne –
If there was one store that I knew I would find the other Black Angels limited RSD release, it would be here. Heartland Records is one of the lesser known stores but also in my opinion, one of the best. Over the many years I have been toMelbourne (before actually living here), I have frequented this store. It was the only store I knew of in Australia that sold Wildhearts stuff when I started getting into them in ‘98. Walked in and staring at me at first glance was The Black Angels ‘Another Nice Pair’ 12” Record Store Day release. I didn’t get one of the lucky 100 that had the randomly inserted fully signed poster but nonetheless, I got a quality release that sounds even better than it looks. Here I also managed to acquire the Sonic Youth RSD re-issue of ‘Whore’s Moaning’, their 1993 Australian tour EP. I used to own this on CD but someone borrowed it and I never saw it again. Today’s special at Heartland was free 7”ers with every purchase. I pulled out a handful of singles by Ash, The Blood Brothers and The Bronx and away I went.

Missing Link / Collector’s Corner (Basement 405 Bourke St, Melbourne –
Walked in and the place was packed. The majority of the exclusive RSD releases were all gone. I was searching for the exclusive OFF! single that was being released for this event but no luck. I wasn’t giving up though. I searched right through this store for any items that were in the sales bins looking for that bargain. Picked up some $1 singles by J Church, Los Gusanos (has C J Ramone), The Kwyet Kings (has Euroboy from Turbonegro), and Game For Vultures (Estrus release) all on glorious 7” vinyl. Amongst the record buying public I caught up with my mate Billy and we continued our journey.

Off The Hip Records (Basement level, 381 Flinders Lane, Melbourne –
One of my favourite Melbourne stores cos not only does it house great rock and power pop records but it occasionally has awesome bands playing and for the drinkers, owner Mickster usually flows regulars with beers. Greeting Mickster, the question was asked… “Did you get any of the RSD releases?” He responds with “I got one… The Big Star boxset”. *yoink* MINE! That was easy. While talking punk and rock with Billy and Mickster I advised that the one record I really wanted that was left from the RSD releases was the OFF! single and that I couldn’t find it. Some dude in the store overheard me say this and told me that Ritual Records had some. I had never heard of this store before but thought I’d check it out. After leaving Off The Hip, I walked back to my car with Billy and pointed him in the direction of Heartland Records as he had never been there before and I assured him he was giving his collection of vinyl a great disservice. We parted ways and off I went.

Ritual Records (189 St Georges Road, North Fitzroy –
Never been in this store before but it may become a staple part of my vinyl diet. Cheap prices and a lot of records tailored to the punk, emo, drone, indie genres. They had sold out of the OFF! singles so no luck there but I will keep this store in mind for future treks. Not a bad store and I hope they stick around. So thus ends my record store day.

Here’s a pick of my scoop:

The RSD releases I wanted that I missed out on were:
MASTODON / ZZ TOP – Split 7”
NIRVANA – Hoarmoaing EP
OFF! – Live 7”

Anyway, enjoy your weekend, crank up your turntables and party hard, Andrew WK style.

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