Every day is record store day! This could easily be the subtitle of this project, since you and me, we are all vinyl addicts. We love to go record hunting on any given day. But one day each year, people all over the world celebrate Record Store Day. This gathering of independent record store owners and employees is being held on a yearly basis since 2008 and has become a tradition to celebrate and spread the word about the unique culture surrounding thousands of stores worldwide and about 100 in our own little country.
Our very own project ‘Red Bull Belgium: The Vinyl Frontier’ was born for the occasion of Record Store Day 2014, when we published our first book interviewing seven Belgian vinyl collectors such as dj Lefto, Music Mania owner Lorin Deforce, SDBan label boss Stefaan Vandenberghe or northern soul digger Thierry Steuve. The book was a free gift to record diggers who could pick it up at their favorite store on the day of Record Store Day. The thousand copies quickly ran out, so not much later we posted all the interviews on our website and never stopped writing about Belgian vinyl culture since.
We still value Record Store Day for being a celebration of independent record store culture and the emphasis on local content. That’s why we present you our favorite Belgian Record Store Day activities and releases for 2019.
Ambassador for Belgium: Jimmy Dewit
We have always been a fan of Jimmy. Ever since he started dj’ing as Bobby Ewing or part of the groovy lunatic dj combo Discobar Galaxie, he stole our hearts. For his efforts for our Belgian national music heritage with Jan Delvaux as Belpop Bonanza, we awarded the duo a ‘Red Bull Belgium: The Vinyl Frontier’ award for Outstanding Contribution. For Record Store Day 2019 he curated a special 7 inch vinyl record with the evergreen “Killy Watch” by The Cousins on the A-side and “Eso Es El Amor” by The Chakachas on the B-side. Here is an interview (in Dutch) with Jimmy Dewit about Record Store Day 2019. It’s a free record by the way, a gift for avid record diggers this Saturday.
A fine list of dedicated Record Store Day releases by Belgian artists and labels
Consouling Sounds, Glints, Hooverphonic, Millionaire, Mania Dub, The Van Jets, Whispering Sons, … are all releasing especially for Record Store Day 2019. Find the full list of Belgian releases on recordstoreday.be. We are curious to check the 10” by Raketkanon frontman Pieter-Paul Devos, the Poltrock cover of Soulwax’ Missing Wires and the Destiny’s Child cover by jan Verstraeten.
Three hotspots in Ghent (Music Mania & Consouling Store) and Brussels (PIAS Recordings)
Next to record store digging galore, Record Store Day offers a bunch of free concerts all around the country, with the traditional hotspots in Ghent and Brussels. It’s always rewarding to go to Music Mania since the iconic record shop is hosting concerts in collaboration with Democrazy at the adjoining Vooruit once again. Lined up are Zwangere Guy, STADT, Hydrogen Sea and Tristan among others. At Consouling Store Barst, Il Dead Boys, Vandal X and Bolt Ruin provide the roughest soundtrack of the weekend. And in Brussels the record shop CHEZ PIAS of PIAS Recordings is the place to be. They open doors for showcases of Poltrock, Whispering Sons and Portland.
Extra exciting at CHEZ PIAS is the live vinyl cutting session by Daft Studios. A live recording by Portland will be transferred on vinyl in the Insta-Vinyl Caravan parked outside the shop. Read a feature about Daft Studios in Malmedy here.
Antwerp is on fire
The city of Antwerp counts 13 record shops, here are a few to pay a visit On Saturday for their line-ups of young talented bands or legendary dj’s.
Fat Kat Records: showcases by Barst, MTTR and Sad Sad Sad
Tune Up Records: showcases by Eric Thielemans, Mauro Pawloswki & Aso Asin
Wally’s Groove World: showcases by JJ Funhouse, Mills Boogie & Hill Men
Warrecords: 1 year anniversary with showcases by New Beat pioneer Dikke Ronny and Café D’Anvers legend Smos.
Why not travel around the country and visit a record shop you haven’t been before?
Here is a selection of shops you could try out.
Enjoy the seaside and a visit to Compact Center - Ostensche Ploate in Oostende
Enjoy the Ardennes and a visit to R-Factory in Spa
Buy off-stream vinyl at ZoeZoe Records in Ghent
Discover non-anthems at Doctor Vinyl in Brussels
Have an amazing lunch and check records at Super Fourchette in Brussels and The Manufactory in Ghent.
Or try our Belgian Record Store locator map, with every record store in Belgium on it.
Or ignore Record Store Day completely
And join “Record Gore Day™ "vinyl klinkt warmer op de evenaar" editie #3” by Antwerp outcast shop Morbus Gravis. One week after Record Store Day 2019, this event will be held at café De Klok a few hundred meters from Morbus Gravis and should be the most low-profile Record-Store-Day-Not-Record-Store-Day event in Belgium … no, the world. Unless it gets picked up by a international selling energy drink supporting Belgian vinyl culture of course.