Instrumental prog-mathcore crew Masiro are back with a new EP on the horizon and, ahead of the release, Mike from the band sat down with us to discuss his favourite record shops.
"Ok, so straight out the gate - I'm not a total vinyl nut, but I really do appreciate the quality of a good pressing and do love the large format artwork and somewhat ritualised process of playing a record. There's also an element of nostalgia involved from my Dad playing records when I was a kid, and getting into newer records at our shared student house at Uni! Here's five of my favourite shops I've visited, either regularly or whilst visiting another city:
1.Truck Store, Cowley Rd, Oxford
Truck is THE local music shop. They stock big and new releases as well as a solid back catalogue and local bands. They've expanded their new vinyl section to almost half the shop and always have a good turnaround on the used records. Truck also have intimate in-store performances and good coffee when you need it!
2.Fopp, Gloucester Green, Oxford
Yes, I know chain stores aren't cool, but I do love Fopp. They took up HMV's mantle when it closed a few years ago (and much of the stock I believe). Since then their vinyl selection has gone through the roof. A real eclectic range of new records too, and some great heavy stuff. And most of the King Crimson albums - win.
3.Resident Music, Kensington Gardens, Brighton
I've been to Brighton a few times for gigs and to catch up with pals. I'll pop into Resident if I get a chance - great vibe, size and music selection. The in-store gigs look great too, although admittedly I've never managed to see one. Also very close to some great guitar shops!
4.Rough Trade East, Brick Lane, London
I was working in East London a few years and dropped in. HUGE shop, massive selection, somewhere all the cool kids hang out, very impressive. Possibly the only shop that I've seen properly selling tapes! They put on some big gigs too. I'll drop in now and then if I'm nearby.
5.Big Brother, Ashley Rd, Poole
I grew up around the corner from Big Bro' and the shop and the owner haven't changed a bit in 15 years. All used vinyls, CDs and other media, as well as decent band posters! For a small independent shop they always have a great selection and the 'new in' vinyl box stays pretty fresh.
BONUS:Oxford Audio Consultants, Park End St, Oxford
OAC is a HiFi shop that have some really great quality systems. They're also now stocking a decent selection of vinyl. Whilst not a dedicated record shop, all the records are high quality 180g pressings from decent mastering plants and cover a lot of genres. I used to work there and serviced a lot of turntables! The best vinyl I've ever heard was a limited edition Mofi pressing of The Nightfly on a customer's very expensive home system. It sounded incredible!