New York vinyl fans have had to cope with repeated bad news over the past few years, as record shop after record shop has closed downtown. But — coming right after the news of a Kickstarter-funded documentary about the beloved, now-closed Other Music — there is more good news: a new record shop is coming to the East Village, created by the people behind the podcast and cult Instagram RecordNerdz and focused on hard-to-find contemporary music.
Opening July 29, Limited to One will be “a record store for record collectors,” said Kristian Sorge, who founded the store with his girlfriend Nichole Porges. “We’re not shooting to have a lot of dollar bins. We don’t want to have a lot of fluff. We want it to be a very curated space that focuses on contemporary collectible items and out-of-print items.”
Sorge says the impetus for the store is partly a response to the “vinyl resurgence” underway, and also a sense that contemporary music is not well stocked in record stores, which tend to be dominated by a “pony-tailed, Dylan-loving old guard” which caters heavily to Led Zeppelin and Beatles fans but not those of Nirvana or the Pixies or more recent work.
“I think there’s a new generation of record collectors out there whose preferences and musical tastes aren’t represented in record stores,” said Sorge. In particular he thinks the decade from the early ’90s to the 2000s, when people weren’t really collecting vinyl records and they were issued in very limited quantities, is a lacuna that Limited to One can fill.
Currently Sorge and Porges are working to stock the store; they’ve got about 2,000 records already and Sorge has been traveling around for six months buying more. “We’re taking our time on it,” he said. “We’re not just buying up big collections or estate sales or whatever; we’re looking for specific music. We’re not going to have 10,000, 20,000 records on sale at any time. We are going to be smaller. The wow factor is when you come in and look at the wall and see an extremely rare vinyl you’ve never seen in a record store.”
They’ve been posting finds to their Instagram as they go — “everything from Nas to Jawbreaker to De La Soul and a bunch of stuff we picked up in Japan like the Smiths and the White Stripes and Nirvana and the Roots. We’re all over the place, as long as it’s contemporary, and I use ‘contemporary’ very loosely. Indie rock or anything past the ’80s.”
The shop will be located at 221 E. 10th Street, between First and Second Avenue. The storefront will be small and intimate — “a little sub-street-level place,” said Sorge — and the hope is that it will serve as a community and gathering place, “like Flight Club, but for records.”
Sorge and Porges are eschewing the dusty, rummage-bin atmosphere of the stereotypical record shop in favor of a cleaner, more modern aesthetic. Boles Studio, which supplied furniture for Etsy’s offices among others, is building the record bins.
The store-opening party the weekend of July 29 will feature a mini-concert. The lineup is still being finalized but will include an acoustic set from Jeff Caudill of Gameface and other “sort of ex-punk rock, ex-indie rockers playing acoustic.”
Correction: An earlier version of this post incorrectly stated that Boles Studio designed the record bins.