At first glance, Singapore seems to be new, modern and progressive in every way. A closer look will reveal that the country is home to nostalgia-inducing spots that take you back to the charming old days. If you have just moved to the country and are a self-proclaimed vinyl aficionado who collects records or someone who likes to kick it old-school, then here are some places in Singapore that you must check out.
Best Record Stores in Singapore
These days most of us subscribe to Spotify to get our music fix, but there are some of us who would prefer to immerse themselves in the detailed sounds of vinyl scratches against the needle. Here are some places established with the sole intention of keeping the past alive.
Situated along the charming streets of Joo Chiat, RetroCrates is somewhat of a sanctuary for music-lovers and people looking to gain some respite from the hustle and bustle of the city. It’s also ideal for crate diggers, a hip-hop term for someone who goes into a record store to find old records to sample. The independent establishment provides patrons with a range of turntables along with a large library of new and pre-loved vinyl records for sale. The second-floor shop house filled with cushions, rugs, and sofas offer a welcoming and cosy space for patrons to just unwind and relax.
White Label Records
Nestled in the dynamic neighbourhood of Ann Siang Hill, White Label Records is a contemporary record store by day and a bar by night. The elegant space is also the ideal hangout for music enthusiasts to soak up some tunes in a conducive and inviting space. If you are feeling famished, the establishment also serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. Additionally, the venue functions as an active space for workshops, gigs, talks, screenings as well as various live music performances and DJs.
The Analog Vault
Noted to be an audiophile’s haven, the Analog Vault is essentially a treasure trove of turntables, vinyl, and other music merchandise. At the same time, the place is home to indie hardback and paperback titles that will offer a good and fulfilling read. Like its online store, the Esplanade brick-and-mortar has a number of records, both in mono and stereo. Apart from that, the place also carries limited editions, box sets and 7’ singles by artists from a number of genres, such as electronic, jazz, world music, hip hop, R&B, soul and modern and experimental classical. If you look hard enough, you might even come across a local band’s title hidden amongst the many international titles.
Choice Cuts Goods + Coffee
The lifestyle concept cafe, shop, and bar provides patrons with a relaxed space to unwind in a cosy and comfortable DIY atmosphere to excite their palates with speciality craft beers and coffee. And that’s not all, the venue allows patrons to access and peruse an assortment of vinyl records, a variety of streetwear brands and hip hop inspired lifestyle products. While here, take some time to immerse yourself in the groovy soul and funk music brought to you by the talented DJs from Matteblacc/Blaccsmith. Besides this, the establishment offers impromptu vinyl sessions in-store, along with a free introductory vinyl DJ workshops every twice a month to take your experience to new heights.
Red Point Record Warehouse
Renowned for carrying every record imaginable, the Red Point Record Warehouse is a crate-digger’s dream. With more than 10,000 vintage vinyl records stacked up to the ceiling, the establishment is the perfect place to find even the most elusive records. The place is popular with music aficionados for its extremely varied selection. Here you will find everything from ‘50s Chinese divas to contemporary indie. Peruse further, and you will find records that celebrate the golden age of rock ‘n’ roll and bygone Singaporean hits. Needless to say, if you own a record, this place is a must-visit.
Vinylicious sells myriad of music-related merchandise, here you will find accessories, box-sets and of course records of every genre under the sky. Whether you are looking for contemporary, folk, pop, reggae, or rock, this place has you covered. Here will have a chance to buy used singles, used albums, new arrivals, etc. If you are a fan of movie soundtracks, Vinylicious will blow you away with its vast collection! From Tron: Legacy vinyl edition motion picture soundtrack to even John Williams’ original motion picture soundtrack, this place truly has it all. The best part? The prices are competitive, so you might be spending a little more than anticipated. Fret not, if you are strapped for cash, this place also contains a comprehensive collection of 80s rock records.
The Bottom Line
Singapore proves that first impression isn’t everything. Although the modern urban jungle is home to countless skyscrapers and contemporary society, the country still contains pockets of old-school attractions that will appeal to the kids who would rather kick it old school.