Gapers Block has ceased publication.

Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
 Thank you for your readership and contributions. 


Monday, April 15

Gapers Block

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jennifer / March 4, 2004 11:12 AM

reckless, hardboiled, and the crow's nest that's going out of business downtown ($10.99 cds!). certainly not from friends burning me cds. certainly. not.

Naz "Hottt downloads" H. / March 4, 2004 11:18 AM

I bought 10 cases of Pepsi. I'm living la vida loca.

jima / March 4, 2004 11:19 AM

GEMM for hard-to-find vinyl and CDs. Can be a bit pricey, but definitely worth searching for that long-lost album you've been looking for for the last 5 years.

Andrew / March 4, 2004 11:29 AM

Reckless and Dr. Wax if I'm looking for something indie, Amazon for the major labels. I like flipping through the stacks of old vinyl at thrift stores, too. Beverly Records down on the South Side is a great resource for hard-to-find stuff -- and they're local!

amyc / March 4, 2004 11:32 AM

Hard Boiled, mostly. Mark the owner will special-order just about anything he doesn't carry. I also get stuff direct from labels or at shows. Or I just borrow stuff from the guy in my house with the giant music collection.

steve sleeve / March 4, 2004 11:36 AM

the internet -- either stealing downloading or making secure transactions. otherwise: hard boiled, because it's close to my house. reckless if i'm in the neighborhood(s).

when i'm visiting the folks in minnesota: cheapo on snelling, let it be, or electric fetus.

m. truck / March 4, 2004 11:39 AM

Laurie's Planet of Sound,, eBay, Limewire, Chris

Ian / March 4, 2004 11:56 AM

Try via P2P...

Buy via Amazon...

Also listening to artists at the online label Take a look, they have a nice and fair business model.

Kenan Hebert / March 4, 2004 11:59 AM

There are a couple decent record stores in this town, a few average ones, but no great ones. Reckless is terribly overrated, particularly the Wicker Park location. The way people talked about it before I got here, I was expecting an Other Music (NYC) or an Amoeba (SF, Berkeley) or at least a Waterloo (Austin). Those are great record stores -- they always have what you're looking for, and you always leave excited about music. Reckless, by comparison, is a little depressing, a little sparse. I get a nagging feeling of slipping into a cliched hipster alt.universe, and I never find what I wanted.

Naz / March 4, 2004 12:18 PM

You know, that's the way I felt about Amoeba - I had heard all this crazy hype about it and was expecting to come away with a basketful of goods. Instead I came away with nothing and everything they had I could have gotten in Chicago for 1-3 bucks cheaper. However, I don't think it's fair to compare either way because each person's account varies from my own visit there. I find Reckless (at Belmont/Broadway, not a fan of the one in Wicker Park) to fit most of my needs and I like it a lot. It certainly doesn't have the size of Amoeba but it has "what I want" most of the time which doesn't mean it has what you may be looking for. Comparing record stores can sometimes be strange that way - it also depends on who's doing the buying and consignment. With indies they partially expect small labels to stock with them as opposed to seeking them out.

Lately though with the advent of the internet (and as always shows themselves), I find myself buying direct from bands from their site, at shows or from record labels and through online distros such as Redline (local Chicago imprint), Lumberjack, Insound etc.

emily / March 4, 2004 12:38 PM

From my music-fanatic husband. Any time I hear something I like he most likely already has it, so I just rely on him for all of my listening needs, or else I use or amazon if I want a real copy of something.

Jerry / March 4, 2004 12:58 PM

First, Ebay. Second, Salvation Army, Village, Unique, etc. Third, Reckless. Otherwise, I go to specialists: Forced Exposure, Biwire, Dusty Groove.

I still have a sweet spot for Tower on Clark, due to the salad days of coming in from the farm for the occasional shopping trip via Clark/Belmont. I used to walk from the ravenswood Metra stop all the way to that Tower and back! Ha! The dedicated consumer ...

Ian / March 4, 2004 1:01 PM

Exclusively through Soulseek and Easynews.

Badmouth me all you like for shafting the bands I love but if the stuff they put out had more than 150 pressings in existence and/or cost less than $75 per 7" I might buy it.

Actually I wouldn't, I'd still steal it. Hey, look at me; I'm moral decrepitude in a fleshy pink covering!

A lex, x, x / March 4, 2004 1:15 PM

First - The voices in my head.

Second - I listen to a LOT of internet radio.

Third - Reckless, Apple store, gifts.

Pete / March 4, 2004 2:35 PM

Physically, Present: Crow's Nest (I live near the one in Crest Hill, the original that isn't closing).

Physically, Past: Reckless, Quaker Goes Deaf, Record Emporium, Second Hand Tunes, Record Swap (Champaign), Record City (Lake Zurich and Skokie), and many others far too numerous to mention.

Electronically: Insound, direct from the record label (cuts out the middle man), eBay, Amazon.

Craig / March 4, 2004 3:12 PM

From a music dealer that hangs out under a viaduct by the United Center.

paul / March 4, 2004 5:25 PM

Amazon... but if anybody can direct me at the best place for world music in Chicago (esp Brazilian) I'd be much obliged...

Kris / March 4, 2004 6:45 PM

I am a bad consumer, because I buy a lot of stuff at Virgin and Borders. Just the major-label stuff, though. Also, Reckless on Broadway, since it's near my house, but I do have a hard time finding what I want there.

Nobody's mentioned CD Baby? Great for truly indie stuff and making new discoveries, and they're good people.

tony / March 5, 2004 12:27 AM

Lately it's been either from the iTunes music store or I get rips from friends' collections.

armaghetto / March 5, 2004 5:42 AM

Ooh! Not completely off-topic, but this is a pretty nifty site. A visual music search engine:

I'm a kazaa, amazon, local shows, random music stores kinda guy, for the record.

Paul / March 5, 2004 9:30 AM

iTunes is the primary source, Amazon is secondary, and local shops (ie, not Virgin) are tertiary. This is mostly because I am lazy and don't do much indie stuff.

Ben / March 5, 2004 11:30 AM

CDs (local) - Hardboiled, Laurie's Planet
CDs (mailorder) - Other Music, Darla
Digital - Hotline Client, iTunes Store

SUZANNE / March 5, 2004 12:13 PM

1.friends stores:laurie's planet o' sound and dr.wax
3.make it up

Jake / March 5, 2004 1:32 PM

Laurie's and Hi-Fi are my favorite record stores in town. I used to buy a lot of used vinyl, but after moving a few times, I've been trying to not buy so much crap I don't need.

I buy my Mojo magazine at the Virgin downtown (it's close to work), and I also use their listening stations and occasionally take advantage of their $9.99 specials. Best Buy and Target are also good for their first-week-of-release specials. I got the Darkness for $7.99 at Best Buy, woo hoo.

Amazon is good to see what's in print, but I hate paying for shipping. And waiting.

I buy stuff from bands at shows and online from indie labels. Speaking of which, Suicide Squeeze printed up another 5,000 copies of their 2003 Elliott Smith 7". It's the last thing he released. Get it while you can. It's good.

I download a lot of major-label stuff that I don't feel the need to own physical copies of. And singles. But if I download something I like, I'm usually pretty good about buying the cd, especially if it's on an independent label...

I'd be willing to occasionally use the Apple Music Store except that iTunes will not burn cds with my system, so fuck that.

Kenan / March 5, 2004 1:42 PM

What's your system? I'm using XP, and iTunes works great for me. And even so, couldn't you download with iTunes and burn with whatever you burn with?

Jeremy / March 5, 2004 1:44 PM

Locally, Reckless, even though they're weak on backlist—those records which a good record store should always have in stock. The Wire's Pink Flag, Television's Marquee Moon, Belle and Sebastian's Tigermilk, My Bloody Valentine's Loveless—these are examples of indie-canon records that Reckless doesn't bother to keep in stock. If they don't come in used they're not coming in.

Reckless is pretty good on new releases though—yesterday I went there looking for the new Liars and I had no trouble. (But, predictably, they don't have last year's They Threw Us All in a Trench and Stuck a Monument on Top in stock anymore. Sigh.)

Online I'll order hard-to-find stuff from Other Music, or (increasingly) direct from the label or artist. Plus the usual CD-R swaps with friends etc.

stephen / March 5, 2004 2:11 PM

Well, lately have been cutting back on music buying (which sucks) but I've come across a couple of very nice online sources that aren't the apple music store. Not that I have a problem with it, but its nice to have options, no? One is Music Lunchbox, which features more indie stuff that the itunes store may not have, and allows artists to sell songs directly through it. Not bad! Not sure how well it works with macs, tho.
It also has Ogg Vorbis compression..there's also BLEEP, Warp Records' very ambitious project that allows you to buy just about their entire catalog online, which is an insane undertaking for a single label. Yet they did it, and did it well..the song preview function is brillant. Just watch out, I kinda went nuts on the Boards of Canada albums..

stephen / March 5, 2004 2:16 PM

In other news, Martha Stewart's been found guilty! On all counts! Next discussion, what patterns go with gray?

Brenda / March 5, 2004 3:01 PM

Diet Pepsi caps. I have a pretty good stash in my desk drawer. I wonder how long these things are good for?

Carly / March 5, 2004 3:09 PM


...does anyone know of anyone who's actually won the Pepsi thing?

Brenda / March 5, 2004 3:17 PM

The Pepsi thing is really good odds. 1 in 3 wins. This week I've bought 5 Diet Pepsi's and had 3 winning caps.

If you're looking for a sure thing, try this:
How to Never Lose the Pepsi iTunes Giveaway

Benjy / March 5, 2004 3:41 PM

So you're the one getting my iTunes songs! I've bought about 12 Diet Pepsi's in recent weeks and only won 3 songs--can't preview them in a vending machine. Did find another one on a discarded bottle in the waste basket by our receptionist, though...

BTW, they're good through April 30, 2004.

skimble / March 5, 2004 5:41 PM

For world music I'm quite happy with CDRoots.

Kris / March 5, 2004 7:23 PM

I have seven iTunes caps sitting in my desk drawer, but I have yet to download the software. Store. Thing.

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