Sunday, March 21, 2010

heaven on earth

In anticipation of a new release from one of my all-time favorite bands, Mouse on Mars, I recently spent some time searching for some new info when I stumbled upon a Flickr stream featuring a little record store with close ties to M.O.M. and the Cologne, Germany electronic music scene. Upon further investigation through photographs, I learned a lot about this store I've heard of before known as A-Musik. However, what I discovered is that it was more than a mere record shop, but a solid little culture, complete with live in-store music performances, movie screenings and art shows. I've been to many record shops, but this here is indeed something special, especially after seeing some of my favorite shops disappear, or existing shops' inventory being replaced by more and more DVDs and video games. Some guys like to golf, while others watch lots of sports. For me, it's all about the music, especially searching for cds and records. Perhaps it's a prehistoric, primal inclination to hunt or explore- the thrill of discovering something new, digging it out from the bins and holding it in my hands is very special to me, adding to the listening experience (which could be perhaps akin to "the feast" ?). The same can be said for books, and you will never find a Kindle in my hands, unless it would be to chuck it into the nearest trash bin. A-Musik have been around a while, as well as many of their related musical acts, and they obviously understand the importance of cultivating a "scene" or a culture. It's also a beautiful little store to boot (my wife, the "style expert" agrees)! Seeing these photos (which I nabbed from Flickr) makes me want to hit the nearest record store, and bring my camera as well. In any case, I definitely know where I'll stop first, if I ever visit Cologne, Germany.