Monday, September 17, 2012

Conch Records

115A Ponsonby Road, Auckland, New Zealand.

Despite my obvious desire to stay home with the record collection I haven’t seen for four years, my day job required that I went up to Auckland for a conference over the weekend.

I worked from my companies Auckland office on Friday and was tipped off about a ‘new’ record shop about 500m down the road.

As it turns out, Conch Records (115A Ponsonby Road, Auckland, New Zealand) has actually been in business for 12 years in total and six in its current location.

All I can say is, ‘Dagnammit!’ that I didn’t find out about it before.

Conch seems to have no discernible overall record selling ethos other than ‘eclectic’. (In that respect (and the little café at the front) it reminds me a lot of the late-lamented Jittering Records in Moseley, Birmingham – one of my favourite ever record shops). 

It’s a mix of new and second hand soul, afrobeat, hip-hop and downtempo. (Which largely matches my tastes).

I’ve kinda cleared myself out this pay cycle with comedy and gig tickets, so had to behave myself – but came away with a few gems (including- but not limited to - the following) for $40 all up.
Herbie Hancock ‘Rockit’ CBS 12” Single
I missed out bidding on a 7” copy of this online a few weeks ago because we were going to the market. I think it went for $5.50. I paid $5 all up for the 12” with the single edit on one side and the album version on the B-Side. This deserved to be in my collection. Made todays digging worthwhile before I found anything else. (Sadly, a 1980’s US major label pressing, so slightly thicker than a flexidisk off of a magazine cover, but only just…)
Rodney P ‘Riddim Killa/A Love Song (Feat. Julie Dexter)’ Low Life Records 12” Single
The 2nd hand hip-hop section wasn’t that great (NZ hip-hop is awful, relying on hackneyed west coast clichés and the second hand bins largely consist of major label US drivel) but this was $5. It’s Rodney P, who’s one of my favourite MC’s both lyrically and tonally. I love UK hip-hop – Mark B’s comment that “UK hip-hop has as much to owe to reggae as it does to US hip-hop” is never clearer than when you hear Rodney P.
Boca 45 feat. Tammy Payne ‘Take A Ride’ Grand Central 12” Single
I remember the name “Boca 45” but bought this without listening to it based on the fact that a) it was $2.00 and b) it’s on Grand Central Records (Rae & Christian’s label and home of ‘Northern Sulfuric Soul’, one of my top 10 favourite LP’s ever).
Busta Rhymes ‘Tear The Roof Off’ WEA 12” TP
I’ve got literally hundreds of white labels but this is actually the first that I’ve seen with a TP label on it. It’s the “clean” version on the A-Side (which is what I imagine Brits know as a ‘Radio Mix). On the B-Side it’s the album version. It’s Busta Rhymes, it was in the $1.00 shit bin, so it’s worth a go, right?
Taken from ‘Music For Dancefloors: The Cream Of The Chappell Music Library’ Strut 12” EP Sampler
Strut is one of the most consistent and amazing re-release labels and the catalogue number makes me think that this is an early, pre-K7 buyout promo. Whatever though, it’s on Strut. It’s gonna be quality.
Stevie Wonder ‘Living For The City/Visions’ Tamla 7” Single
I found out early this week that the reason that my original (1973) ‘Yester-Me, Yester-You, Yester-Day’ 7” was slightly familiar is that I already had a mint un-played 200? Reissue. I ‘ve been a big fan of “purple-period” 1970’s Stevie Wonder for ages. I recently listened to a Motown Stevie Wonder compilation LP that I bought in a batch of soul records and realised (with some surprise) that his 60’s singles are actually just as good. This is seventies anyway. It’s in a generic cover but really clean.
The Quantic Soul Orchestra ‘Super 8 (Part 1)/Super 8 (Part 2)’ Tru Thoughts 7” Single
Amongst the other lists of super-hot 45’s that I’m building is a great funk/block party set. This is gonna be in it.
Quantic feat. Alice Russell ‘The Sound Of Everything (Watch TV & Senorlobo reprise)’ Marulasoulfood  7” (Plays the same both sides)
It’s a bit more sedate, but I assume that it’s the same Quantic as above. Reminds me a bit of ‘Soul Vibration’ by J-Walk. No bad thing.

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