Behind The Blue Door

Stylish Weekends | February 2, 2016 |

Rocking the vinyl:

Five of Britain's best independent record shops

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Vinyl enthusiasts, rejoice. We’re in the middle of a record resurgence, with sales reaching 1.3 million units in 2014 and predicted to leap to 2 million in 2015. While it may never reach  the popularity of its 70s heyday, both generation X and Y seem to be ditching digital downloads in favour of LPs.

If flipping through the likes of Bowie, Floyd and Dylan is one of your favourite pastimes, make a date to visit these brilliant record shops.

Piccadilly Records: Manchester

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Image source: Manchester Evening News

Having flogged records in the heart of the northern capital since the late 70s – changing location over and over before settling in the ultra cool northern quarter – Piccadilly Records isn’t short on expertise or enthusiasm. Having championed local artists such as Joy Division, you’ll find the finest in rock, pop and indie nestled alongside the odd disco track.

 

Pie & Vinyl: Portsmouth

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Image source: Pie & Vinyl

Selling exactly what it says on the sign, this Southsea shop dishes out hot plates of pie, mash and gravy to punters who find themselves post-browse peckish. Venture beyond the inviting lure of comfort food to discover specialists in new music – with records produced from 2014 onwards from both local and world-renowned artists.

 

The Record Album: Brighton

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Image source: The Vinyl Factory

While many record shops stand strong on Brighton’s colourful streets, The Record Album was the first – established in 1948. Specialising in film and TV soundtracks, those fortunate enough to stumble across it are greeted by George Ginn, the store’s 84 year old owner, who curates the collection with his encyclopaedic musical knowledge.

 

Honest Jon’s Records: London

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Image source: Buzzfeed

Situated on London’s ultra cool Portobello Road, this bright, welcoming record shop has become something of a musical institution. Having taken over the reins from founder and original John – John Clare – in 1992, Alan Schofield and Mark Ainley have built a flourishing business using an expansive combined musical knowledge. The old-school shop is popular with browsers looking for eclectic blues, dance, soul, reggae and global music. Oh, and Blur’s Damon Albarn partners on its independent label.

 

Rise: Bristol

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Image source: Rise

Championing the best of indie music, Rise is actually a chain of three indies, with premises in Bristol, Cheltenham and Worcester. When you’ve finished browsing through mountains of vinyl, there are also CDs, vintage clothing, DVDs and books. The Bristol store also moonlights as a live music venue, with the likes of Laura Marling, The xx and Mumford & Sons gracing the stage.

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As you unwrap your favourite LP, settle down with a plate of avo toast and a fresh brew, served in Wedgwood’s Jasper Conran Platinum collection.

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