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London’s best record shops

Vintage records and second-hand CDs – expand your music collection here

© Tomek Mazur
Flashback Records

Whether you’re looking for jungle twelve-inches, classical music on CD, rock LPs or jazz seventy-eights, London has the record shops to scratch your music-buying itch. The vinyl revival doesn’t show any signs of slowing down, and events like Record Store Day have helped bricks-and-mortar record stores not only recover but flourish over the last few years. Here are some of the best to be found in London, from new openings to old stalwarts and survivors. If we’ve missed your favourite, let us know in the comment box at the bottom of the page.

London’s best record stores

All Ages Records

As one of the best known punk and hardcore record stores in London, All Ages attracts a very specific kind of customer. But they’ve got a fairly wide range of things dark and heavy, from the ’70s to the present day, so unless you hate guitars you’ll probably find something you’re into.

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Camden Town

Banquet Records

This little record shop punches well above its weight. As well as selling new releases on CDs and vinyl, Banquet (an offshoot from the old Beggars Banquet franchise) is at the centre of the Kingston music scene: their packed acoustic in-store shows and regular gig nights bring big artists to this corner of the London suburbs.

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Kingston Upon Thames

Brill

The awning reads: ‘Music. Coffee. Bagels.’ That lays out the essentials succinctly. Brill began life as a music shop, and music is still ‘an integral part of what we do’. There’s always something good playing, and CDs and a few vinyl oddments, with the emphasis on jazz, blues, folk and rock, are for sale inside the small interior.

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Clerkenwell

Casbah Records

After 20 years of trading through a stall at Greenwich Market, Casbah Records upgraded its breezy surroundings to the more permanent confines of quirky retro shop The Beehive on Greenwich Church Street. Here the emphasis is placed on edgy girl groups, garage, psych and '60s soul, but the store also stocks a variety of classic rock, indie and electronica, along with books, DVDs, prints and vintage comics.

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Greenwich

Container Records

Container is an event space and record store in Pop Brixton, specialising in new and used electronic music. Situated in a former shipping container, this independent shop is the brainchild of London promoters keen to provide punters with a friendly, knowledgable and accessible space to explore independent music. 

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Brixton

Flashback Records

Flashback’s mostly second-hand stock is treated with utmost respect. There are usually a few boxes of bargain basement 12-inches going for pennies outside the front door, but inside stock is scrupulously organised.

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Islington

Flashback Records

Taken over by the Flashback Records team in 2006, this little record shop is a local favourite with a good selection of new and used vinyl and a friendly atmosphere.

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Crouch End

Flashback Records

At the top of Brick Lane, the newest branch of Flashback (after Flashback Islington and Flashback Crouch End) stocks two floors of new and second-hand vinyl, CDs and DVDs – some of it rare, most of it at a pretty decent price. There are listening points to give potential purchases a spin.

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Brick Lane

Gramex

Once spread over two floors, Gramex now occupies just the lower floor of 104 Lower Marsh (the ground level shop has recently become a branch of The Book Warehouse). But browsing here is still as comfy and laid back as flicking through a friend’s collection.

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Waterloo

Harold Moores Records

Harold Moores is not your stereotypical classical music store: young, open-minded staff (including Tim Winter of Resonance FM) and an expansive stock of new and second-hand music bolster its credentials.

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Soho
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Comments

6 comments
DnR
DnR

DnR Vinyl - Croydon - We stock a massive amount of oldskool house and garage vinyl as well as grime, dubstep and drum & bass. Visit our store at 18 Lower Addiscombe Road, Croydon, CR0 6AA or check our website www.dnrvinyl.co.uk

Brian
Brian

Record & Tape Exchange in Notting Hill is still the best record shop in London. They have branches in Greenwich and Soho as well. You can always find some absolute gems if you root through the racks. I've seen some incredible rareties in the cabinets as well - as a hardcore psych fan and lover of Bollywood soundtracks, I was amazed to find exactly the pieces I needed for my collection, even if the chap that served me was sullen, and smelt a little. It added to the shop's charm. Happy Customer!!

Julius
Julius

Hi! I am searching for the US Beatles single of Lucy in the sky with diamonds and on the B-side "When I am 64" (red vinyl). Can you help me out? Thanks in advance! Julius (Netherlands)

Marion
Marion

That's the way, I like it!

adriana
adriana

you missed ALLAGESRECORDS!!!!