Wednesday, 16 May 2012

RECORD SHOPS: Raves From The Grave in Warminster

Walking through the door to Raves From The Grave is like stepping into a glorious era when record shops like this supplied generations of music lovers in many towns in the UK. During the last decade shops like this have become a dying breed but after some encouraging recent signs of a revival, independent shops like this have proved that they are worth keeping. Places that provide vinyl enthusiasts, obsessive collectors and music fans with not only somewhere to buy music but to discover music and discuss it too. 

At the front of this superb Warminster shop is a shelf of recently released CD albums, most of which you certainly wouldn't find on the shelves of the local supermarket. Interesting and truly special music has to be stocked somewhere other than the stock room of an internet mail order company, and shops like this are part of music's heart and soul. Every music lover of a certain age has special memories of particular record shops, and even in the digital age there are many who are still keen to carry on creating those memories. 

Along with some excellent posters (that are far better than most of the ones any HMV stock), some bargain £1 vinyl and some hip hop records, there is also a massive wall of CD albums spanning a huge range of genres. A selection of top quality music T shirts are on sale for £10 each, cheaper than most internet prices as well as better value than the chain stores. There's a few small stacks of Record Collector and MOJO magazine back issues on sale for only £1, excellent when you consider the top quality CDs that come with MOJO as well as the superb publication itself.

Then we get to the vinyl. Towards the back of the shop plays home to shelves and shelves of LPs and 12"s, a mouth watering array of indie, punk, funk, soul, electronica, rock, reggae, metal and lots more. The racks filled with 50's and 60's records come with an impressive range of Beatles albums at excellent prices and in fine condition. Against the back wall stands a shelf packed with new release vinyl, and on this occasion there's some leftover Record Store Day stuff too at far better prices than what these limited releases are changing hands for on the internet. All of this sounds great, and by now you will be aware that this is quite a fantastic shop, but it doesn't stop there: there's a downstairs as well. 

Walking down the stairs to the vinyl basement allows a view of some collectable and rare vinyl before you enter the dimly lit main room filled to the brim with more vinyl LPs and 7" singles including plenty of compilations, soundtracks and nicely organised sections dedicated to countless artists. In another small room, as well as more 7" singles there are shelves full of CD singles, mostly from the 90s and 2000s: perfect if you're after a favourite B side or looking to complete your collections. Better still you can buy any four of these CD singles for £5. In another room lays a vast collection of classical, folk, easy listening and country LPs, and elsewhere in the basement you'll also find books, old music magazines, posters, various collectables and some very cheap picture discs. 

In today's case the staff consists of Reuben, a friendly, helpful and chilled-out guy who as well as being a music worshipping record shop worker is also frontman of the South West band Port Erin. It's people like this guy that make buying records from independent shops a far more rewarding experience than having a pile of CDs scanned through the till by a bored HMV shop assistant. Obviously I don't even need to tell you that this experience is also better than going on a website and clicking on a button. Yes, it takes more effort but you'll enjoy it. You'll enjoy it even more if you buy quite a few items since the shop will often allow a discount on multiple purchases.

FREE ordering service for any cd's or dvd's currently in print.

FREE second-hand search service for  any deleted products.

FREE next day mail order service throughout the UK.

Raves From The Grave is located at 5 Weymouth Street, Warminster, BA12 9NP. 01985 213707

The original Raves From The Grave shop in Frome is also still open at Cheap Street, Frome, Somerset, BA11 1BN. 01373 464666

For email enquiries contact

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