Top 4 "Sh?? They've Got My Jam!" Record Shops
Written by: Sophie Taylor
Whether you’re an MP3 negatory or just a big old hipster, there’s no denying the allure of a good record shop. Ah yes, getting vinyl jacket dandruff on your mitts before finding that elusive Rod Stewart number lurking creepily behind the Tina Turners. My favourite find was a Vic Reeves LP that was quietly waiting for me in a charity shop bin in Islington. If I had a vinyl shop it would sell exclusively Reeves and Mortimer records but I’m assuming I’m alone on that one.
We embarked on a North London vinyl cruise to revisit the crispy crème brûlée of record purveyors.
No.1 : Zen Records
Thin yellow shop full of reggae and soul
This is the kind of place more reminiscent of the record shops I used to peruse in my hometown waybackwhen. An authentic treasure trove, where you’ll find a unique gem with Robert’s help.
Geeks of? Reggae and Soul 45”s.
What’s the groove? You won’t find them on t’interweb, this is old school vinyl hunting all the way.
Bonus track? It may be worth giving a little call ahead if there’s something in particular you’re after, or even just to check Rob will be there cos he is ??????.
Zen Records 69 Broad Lane N15 4DJ (020) 8365 1145
Open Mon-Sat 11:30am – 6:30pm
2. Flashback Records
The king of the in-store gigs
They may have cottoned on to their own popularity, but that hasn’t affected their quality stock. A good mixture of new and old, but you may want to rethink your weekend plans budget-wise: you’ll come out with heavy arms and considerably lighter pockets.
Geeks of? Used to be reggae, now better for hip hop.
What’s the groove? It depends on the day and who’s working, but you’ll always find something special.
Bonus track? The DVD selection! You’ll discover some rare treats like my copy of the Shooting Stars game and book.
Flashback Records 50 Essex Road N1 8LR
Open Monday – Saturday 10 – 7pm, Sunday 11 – 6pm
3. Kristina Records
If Wes Anderson had a record shop
These chic vinyl mongers carry a wide range of quality underground music in most genres, in an incredibly neat and organised fashion. Tuesdays are appointment only so bear that in mind when you’re planning your next mid-week vinyl haul.
Geeks of? Organisation and presentation, you won’t get lost with their cataloguing skills and knowledge.
What’s the groove? O’ so neat! Prices are more on the costly side but it’s a different style of record perusing.
Bonus track? They have a rather swanky range of merchandise – record bags, tees and totes. Even their gift vouchers are a work of art.
Kristina Records, 127 Stoke Newington Church St
Open Mon: 12pm – 8pm, Tues: Appointment Only, Wed – Fri: 12pm – 8pm, Sat: 12pm – 7pm, Sun: 12pm – 6pm
4. Lucky Seven
The time machine: buy records for a tuppence
But seriously, there are records on sale for a tuppence. Plus shelves of paperbacks, piles of old Marvel comics and community noticeboards. Don’t forget to trundle down to the basement for even more bargains and hidden delights.
Geeks of All the soul, but a lot of everything else too. Just start looking and finally emerge three weeks later.
What’s the groove? This isn’t pristine acetate for putting in pretty frames. This is digging for music you want to whack on the player ASAP.
Bonus track The bargains are a-plenty if you have the time to really root about through the discount crates. Get dusty and save your dollar.
Lucky Seven 127 Stoke Newington Church St N16 0UH
Open Mon-Sun 11am-7pm
Joined by over 50 other artists incorporating printmaking, painting, digital art, photography and small-scale sculpture, Tomorrow’s World presents us with utopias, dystopias, predictions, prophecies and visions of the future. We hit up the private view last Friday and it was pretty damn bleak, in the best sense of the word.
Carouse founders Chris, Theo and Ben – the charming folk behind Kentish Town’s Rose and Crown – have a new venture afoot and we couldn’t be more bloody excited to see it. We’ve been creeping in their windows, peering through the paint and sneaking glimpses at builders’ bums for a few months now (okay, maybe not the last one), watching these guys transform this cosy corner of Crouch Hill into a rather cool little boozer. Now they’re opening and everyone is invited. Come one, come all, and try all 20 of their beers on tap with us.
Last month I decided to try clubbing again. I don’t quite know what came over me, but I actually (brace yourselves) enjoyed it. I went to Body Hammer’s monthly party in Manor House and I’m here to tell you to go too, whether you love clubbing, hate clubbing, or really couldn’t care either way. #notspon
Rich, fried, buttery, potato-y vessels loaded with flavor combinations that go down rather well with craft beer, late nights and good times. Ha, who am I kidding, EVERYTHING goes down well with beer. You heard that right buddy, loaded potato skins are back with a bang (and a generous portion of bacon) and are currently being served at Old Street's The Magic Roundabout by street food pop-up Skins and we could not be any happier. Well, unless they were to stuff it with, say, Mac and Cheese or risotto. Oh, that's exactly what they do? Well paint me green and call me a cucumber.
Magical gifts, wonderful gifts, marvellous gifts, beautiful gifts, gifts, glorious gifts glo-ri-ous giiiiiifts. Please Sir, I want some more. It’s that time of year again and whether you love it or loathe it gifts will be purchased and presented into expectant hands. Stroud Green's very own Pretty Shiny Shop have compiled a gift guide to help ease the shopping shock. Imagine only having to trot to your local gift shop and tick off your entire shopping list in one fell swoop. Done, finito, terminado! To make it that little sweeter, it's also all very affordable... so you won't even have to pick a pocket or two.
Alright guys, it’s happening. The frosty charm of December is, once again, being beaten to a pulp by the capitalists’ wet dream: Christmas. The hideous twinkling of artificial outdoor lighting is starting to appear, with tourists flocking from far and wide to watch D-list celebrities press a button. Invitations to Christmas parties flood in from your multiple part-time jobs, ensuring you make bad decisions bi-weekly til next year. Supermarkets are selling 12-day advent calendars containing confetti, cookie cutters and candles for a flawless £50. And oh, how the mulled wine flows.
Who doesn’t love a cheeky statistic, correctly sourced? You know we do. Well, did you know that for every £1 spent with a small business, 63p is re-spent in the local area, as opposed to a measly 40p in every £1 re-spent locally with larger businesses? An absolute travesty, am I right? That 23p has to mean something, right, guys?! Guys? Guys, where are you going? Wait, there’s freebies involved too!
By gum there are a lot of winter markets this year. Fueled by sickly sweet mulled wine and overpriced pulled pork sliders, we’ve managed to wade our way through the murky waters of winter markets and find some decent looking ones round this here part of town. Don’t let our Grinch-esq vibes put you off (I’m more of a Pancake Day person myself) because, if you’re into markets, you’ll probably like these. Read on, if you’re merrier than us.
Take a short walk along Finsbury Park’s own sunset strip and you’ll find MoseyHome, an interiors retailer and styling consultancy who have invited us to collaborate with them on an exciting new series titled 'Style My Shop', in which they invite some of London's most talented interiors experts to quite literally style their shop. Interiors porn at it's finest.
Why was the snowman sad? Because he had a meltdown. Much like us, every year, when winter comes. It’s cold, it’s dark, and we know Christmas is on its way. But hey, it’s not all bad – the events round this time of year can be pretty swell. So don your scarf-shawl-blanket and get your frolic on, it’s time for fairy lights, scarfing mulled wine and stuffing your face!
Touch, taste, smell, hear and create art. Smith & Sinclair, purveyors of the Edible Cocktail, presents The Flavour Gallery: a multi-sensory adventure that’ll seduce your senses and tickle your taste buds beyond all imagination. Ooh matron!
Brush the cobwebs off your sexy banana costume; it’s that time of year to make a tit of yourself in fancy dress again. We’ve rounded up the most spine-chilling Halloween happenings in North London and, trust us, they sound horrendous. Be afraid, be very afraid.
God bless the Queen... of Hoxton. Or, more specifically, their rooftop - which happens to be one of our favourites in this here city of London. These guys are well known for creating beautiful, seasonal pop-ups which have included the Nordic Viking themed 'Skye Halla' and the Neverland inspired 'Bangarang'. This winter make way for 'The Moroccan Medina', a sky high hideaway inspired by the romanticism of the beguiling ancient city of Marrakesh.
Next time you need a caffeine hit why not take it from a cup brewed from Jamaican beans grown under a canopy of rainforest-preserving trees, whilst eating a home made vegan banana bread as you sit among an array of sweetly scented blooms. Welcome to Mento, Finsbury Park.