Spanning the musical universe from soul, funk and jazz to indie dance, house, minimal and techno, Berlin’s wax culture is very much alive. Vinyl lovers know that a day spent digging in a crate is a day well spent, and that even in the digital age, nothing can compare to the crisp character and sound of vinyl. Here are the best record shops the city of Berlin has to offer.
Hip in Berlin? Then this one’s for you. It’s a store in Friedrichshain where you can purchase records and get your streetwear items at the same time. HVV has a huge collection of records for sale online, and the bricks-and-mortar store carries a selection of hip hop, funk, soul and disco and new electronic music from their online stock.
Hailed by vinyl lovers as the first place to go for the minimal house genre, this cosy record store has a warm, familiar atmosphere. The owner, Joe, is known and loved by his loyal customers, who are made to feel special through his passion, the great selection of records that keeps on flowing in, his abundant musical knowledge and the coffee that’s on offer while they browse the shelves.
Oye is the definitive record store for dance music in Berlin, and it showcases the best releases from small labels. Run by DJ Delfonic and disco head Tinko, the shop is well organised and expansive and the crew at hand are friendly and knowledgeable, making Oye Records an unmissable stop for any vinyl lover in Berlin.
One of the best record stores for soul-based music in the city, this shop has an impressive employee history, with huge international DJs such as Hunee and Alex Barck of Jazzanova having once worked the crates there. The store celebrates the golden age of hip hop, and soulful vinyl lovers can find many rare grooves pressed on wax, bargains to make you smile and new albums and reissues sold at a fair price.
Head to Space Hall for a musical journey you won’t forget. This expansive vinyl shop moves from a room full of soul and jazz crates into rock, post-punk, industrial and new wave. As you venture further towards the back room, you will reach an explosive electronic, techno and minimal section, and time will fall away as you dig through. Set aside a few hours for your visit.
Frequented by members of the Berghain sub-culture, people in all-black attire with straight faces, Hard Wax has been accused of being pretentious. Still, it’s one of Berlin’s most renowned record stores for techno and minimal, offering the best selection to be found anywhere. Founded in 1989, it’s a bonafide dance music mecca and an industry institution. You’d better keep a serious face and know something about music.
Melting Point has been described by loving followers as being the closest thing in Berlin to the famous record-store culture in New York. The crates are bursting with all manner of soul and jazz records at affordable prices, and there’s a great secondhand selection. You can also get your hands on techno, house and disco jams; just ask the friendly owner, Mitch, to assist you.
Platten Pedro is a haven for vinyl freaks. The store is almost 50 years old and is run by Peter Patzek and his wife. Spanning every musical genre, the collection is estimated at over 100,000 secondhand records, organised alphabetically and measured by the metre. This wonderfully eclectic and borderline bizarre shop does things its own way. The business hours, for example, are between 10.07 and 16.53 on weekdays, and between 09.59 and 13.07 on Saturdays.