My taste in music is pretty eclectic but it’s mostly experimental. It divides between electronic and electro-acoustic music. I am also really into modern composers. In late 70s Bollywood was a big collectors thing in Israel. I was into it for a slight period but I couldn’t keep up with it. I was a metalhead as a kid so I only collect extreme metal from the 80s and 90s but I also buy a lot of reissues of techno and electronic records. There’s a massive wave of reissues going on in the last couple of years.
What setup do you have at your place and what sort of turntable do you use? I used to DJ so I have a Technics SL1200. Never gets old!
How long have you had this store? It’s only been 2 months but it’s co-owned by two people who have a lot of experience in the record business. One of them has a label called Uganda Records and he has run that for almost 15 years and the other one owns a big distribution. Both of them decided to start this venture together so we have got a lot of background and history behind the store. I think it’s because they both come from an established music background and that’s what gives us an extra edge.
What sort of records do you keep? The odd thing about Israel is that it is a hub for techno music. The scene is huge but it’s hardly represented in the stores. We are the only store who stock a lot of techno records. We try to hold local records even if it's not the kind of genre we usually keep. We have Indie, Jazz, OSTs but we try to deal more with electronic and experimental music because there's not a place for that in the Tel Aviv record stores and we try to have that niche. We are not snobbish in any way we try to cater to everybody. We’ve got Nicki Minaj sitting next to Moondog sitting next to Alice Coltrane and then we have Electro from the 90s and EBM (electronic body music) from the 80s. We also have an electronic label behind the store, it’s called ‘Confused Machines’. One of the owners of the store owns that label so we are connected mainly to that scene.
Have you guys felt the revival of vinyl? We all felt it in a different way since we were working at different places, still in the record business. I used to manage a big record store in the South so I’d say that we have passed the revival but we are on it now. The first wave was momentous, we are in the third wave now. I used to say that the first wavers bought records till their needles broke and then they just stopped. The Third wave is more established because all the people who went crate-digging for the trend don't do it anymore so now it’s just people who are genuinely into the vinyl culture.
Can you tell us something about your clientele? How has it changed over the years? I’d like to say that there are basically 3 main characters. There are really young people who are getting into records which I find the most exciting customers because they want to learn and I can sit and talk about music all day. I love it when people want to know what we think and what’s our take on music. We always have new recommendations for them every month. The second type is hipsters. I don’t judge. As long as you buy records and listen to good music. Music is music. I don’t know what good music is, for instance, I can't stomach Radiohead for a minute, it’s just not my cup of tea. The third kind is diehards, the ones who never stop buying records. In the 90s they'd go to market and fairs to collect records from everywhere.
How do you source your records? As I mentioned before one of the owners owns a big distribution. He has a lot of boutique labels. We get a lot of stuff from the South but we also contact the labels. We are the exclusive sellers of Warp records. 80% of their records are not held by anyone and that's like our calling card. We are the only people who have them. We try to bring stuff that nobody else has and tighten our relationships with the labels.
Tell us something about your store. Working at a record store is such a niche occupation that a lot of people don't really recognize it as a viable business, they still think it’s a hobby. We sell records, cassettes and books and we just brought in some T-shirts of Israeli designers. There are live shows here every week. We have a wall here to display the work of new designers and artists. I’d like to think that we do offer a bit of a different experience in our store. A lot of people just come here to enjoy the ambience. We try to make it look like home.