Two remarkable things were quietly added to the record shop in August: The first is the CD rack you see in this picture. The second is a CD player. In re-introducing CDs to the shop we’ve decided to limit ourselves to local music because that’s what inspired us in the first place.
There’s even less money in CDs than in records, but there’s some great stuff to be heard and in the end that’s what a record store is all about. Some of this year’s best new albums have appeared only on CD, and you can understand why when you consider the cost of mastering, plating and pressing an LP.
Look at these two discs – If You Like to be Alone or if You Need to be with Someone by the Brian Just Band and Brace for the Bloom by Dragons Power Up! – and you’ll notice they split the tracks as though there were two sides. Sides worked for decades and the CD years (let’s say 88-98 or so) failed to produce a truly great album. I will welcome a return to the old side 1/side 2 format if it can get us out of the hopeless spiral of filler track filled stinker discs for which we can thank Nirvana. If there were a few more discs like the Brian Just Band’s debut or the Dragons Power Up! kick ass album it would renew our collective faith – One of the really frustrating things is how many dogs seem to get pressed on vinyl and sit on the shelves while genuinely good recordings never get the chance.
I think there was a post somewhere in the past about records I wish had been records and not CDs. I would still happily pay $20 for a copy of Freak In but I doubt it’s ever going to be an option. I think eventually If You Like to be Alone… will get pressed on vinyl (It’s just that good), and I would like to see the same opportunity for a few other local artists.
Here’s some great CD-only tracks from recent local releases. The only one we don’t have in stock at the record shop is the Willie Murphy disc:
“Pretty Girl” by Is/Is
“Belles of Cloud City” by the Annandale Cardinals
“A Sad Day to be You” by the Cactus Blossoms
“Story of my Love Life” by Willie Murphy
“Where Do You Go?” by Dragons Power Up!
“Storm King” by the Brian Just Band