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There’s something really quite wonderful about a record shop. It’s a multi-sensory experience – the sound of a new artist, the aesthetics of the various album artwork, not to mention the sweet, musty scent of second-hand vinyl.
Like any city, Leeds has had its record shop casualties over recent years, but those that remain are still flying the flag. With no HMV in sight, take a look at our five favourite record shops in Leeds.
— Jumbo Records (@JumboRecords) May 26, 2015
It’s no exaggeration to suggest that Jumbo is a Leeds institution. Opened nearly 45 years ago by local music guru Hunter Smith, its current spot at the top of the St Johns Centre off Dortmund Square serves as a veritable Mecca for gig-goers, vinyl collectors and music-inspired bods with a taste for anything from smooth jazz to electronica. Jumbo is a shop with a conscience, too, seeking to lend a helping hand to emerging local bands and independent venues, and in terms of music knowledge, let’s just say you’d want their staff on your pub quiz team.
Jumbo, 5/6 St John’s Centre, Leeds, LS2 8LQ – more info
— Crash Records (@Crash_Records) June 22, 2015
Built in the same vein as Jumbo, Crash is very much part of the furniture when it comes to the Leeds music scene. Situated on the Headrow, the music is slightly less varied, with more of a taste for indie, rock, metal, alternative and so on, but the attention to signed releases, re-releases and all things yesteryear is a thing of wonder. Not that it’s dated, of course – like Jumbo, Crash is still your place to get hold of new music and for gig tickets for venues across the city and beyond.
Crash, 35 The Headrow, LS1 6PU – more info
— Tribe Records (@TribeRecords) May 11, 2015
If Crash is your place for all things guitar, then Tribe is its brother in arms for underground, dub step, drum & bass, reggae, techno and dance. In fact, Tribe is pretty much a jack of all trades, too, as a producer and music venue as well as a record shop – it does it all. In its own sphere, Tribe is very much an internationally renowned name nowadays, and even if its genre isn’t particularly your thing, it’s well worth a look around.
Tribe, 13 Crown Street, Leeds, LS2 7DG – more info
— Norman Records (@normanrecords) June 11, 2015
Based just a little bit out of the way from the city centre in Holbeck, Norman Records is a record shop with a difference, and is a firm favourite of music lovers across the city. Like many record shops, Norman Records is an institution born out of a burning passion for music, and for the physical experience of going out and buying some vinyl. That said, the times are a-changing (yes, they’ll certainly stock some Dylan), and their ‘click and collect’ and ‘price match vinyl’ services have served as trailblazers on the local music scene.
Norman Records, Unit 20, Croydon House, Croydon Street, LS11 9RT, 0113 245 4399 – more info
— Martyn newman (@Slartybart42) June 3, 2015
The third apex to the ‘vinyl triangle’ in the city centre along with Jumbo and Crash, Relics Records is yet another defiant vinyl stockist with its finger on the pulse of modern music. Despite a modest exterior, the store itself is deceptively spacious and with more than 25,000 vinyl gems, 10,000 used CDs and 1,000 DVDs, it’s definitely one to seek out the next time you’re on the hunt for something special.
Relics Records, 53 New Briggate, LS2 8JD, 0113 2347361 – more info
Featured image by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images