These are some recent finds from Albuquerque's Krazy Kat Records. For as long as I have lived here, I have only recently started my rounds at Krazy Kat. For some reason, I never thought about checking out this place, and it wasn't until a recent news story about the store being raided by the police and representatives of the RIAA for pirating CD's that I thought I should see what they have (before the close down??).
I think it was back in August that I first went down to the store, and I ended up spending about 3 hours on my first visit. Krazy Kat is actually two separate stores, one is a regular store of new and used records and CD's, and the other is a discount store full of records from $1-5, cassettes and old VHS movies. In the regular store, underneath the displayed records and the cd's are shelves upon shelves of unpriced and largely unorganized records. After quickly flipping through the records on display, I decided to make the gargantuan effort of going through the mass of unorganized records and ask for prices. Most of these where behind other boxes of empty jewel cases, cardboxes and other garbage the store had laying around, so there was a lot of moving junk around to make space and trying to get out of the way of other customers trying to walk around me. After hours of sitting on the floor, my pants were filthy, my hands were black from going through so many dirty records, and my back was telling me cd's and mp3s are not as hazardous to my health. One of these days when I don't feel like working and am feeling slightly masochistic, I will dig through the massive number of boxes of 45s they have sitting around. At least they were nice enough to let me wash the black grime off my hands in their employee bathroom, although the employee kitchen/bathroom area was so disgusting it made me imagine what Amy Winehouse's apartment might look like.
On the first trip, I came away pretty happy, with a nice minty copy of an early pressing of John Coltrane's My Favorite Things, the double LP set of Syd Barrett's two albums, a cheap copy of Mercyful Fate's Melissa and some other things I can't remember right now. The pricing process was pretty frustrating. I have no idea what they were doing when they took the records away to be priced after I pulled out those I was interested in (maybe checking ebay??), but they'd come back with trashed copies of the non-gatefold version of the Allman Brothers-Eat a Peach for $10-12. I just wanted a listening copy, and just because they taped the completely split and water-stained seams for me, I wasn't gonna fork over that much money for it. Not to mention $8-9 for a junky copy of Bad Company's first album (somehow the images on the inner gatefold were completely torn off).
While their idiosyncratic pricing policy was laughable, they also have a great selection of good records in fairly decent condition in their discount store. I recently walked away with the above four records for under $10, and the vinyl for each plays great with only a few surface scratches. I'm pretty new to the whole fusion thing, but it was great to walk away with some classic fusion albums for such a low price. Next time I may have to grab one of the ten copies of Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch's tapes they have there.