SRCvinyl has found a Toronto home for its collection in Parkdale, inside the art and apparel store Playdead Cult . The company began as an online record distributor before opening a retail store in Niagara Falls.
Inside the hardwood-lined Playdead shop, the SRCvinyl collection is what greets you first - however, it would be impossible to miss the other Playdead offerings: walls strung with quirky dolls, skulls and prints, racks of clothing and too many other odds and ends to mentally make note of.
The saleswoman helps me navigate the stacks of vinyl which are alphabetically organized. The wide range of genres and artists are impressive - everything from Motown and 90s alt-rock to contemporary Canadian indie, MF Doom and Bing Crosby.
Fingering past Natalie Merchant and Sublime, I land at Sufjan Stevens, The Waterboys and some classic film soundtracks.
The prices are unsurprising for mint condition vinyl - mid-teens for EPs and $25 and up for most albums. There are many special edition packages, which collectors would happily nab despite their $58 - $150 range. To ensure you're fully equipped to listen, Playdead also sells sleeves, cleaners, crates and record players.
Since the Playdead aesthetic isn't personally my style, but sifting through records is - simultaneously experiencing the eccentric brand and vinyl feels peculiar. But, the record collection is impressive enough to warrant a return visit.
The shopping experience is, overall, a unique, warm one - and since Parkdale is anything but short of awesome oddities, it feels right to throw this pairing in the mix.
Writing by Jess Huddleston. Photos by Hector Vasquez.