Dublin is a city with music at its very core. Pre-Covid, you could expect to hear something new every night of the week, with the sound of live music pulsing across the city. Dublin plays host to so many amazing pubs, bars, clubs and venues, ranging from small independent grassroots to huge arenas. There’s something for everyone in Dublin.
Bands like U2, Thin Lizzy and The Cranberries hailed from Ireland’s capital city. Today, Dublin’s music scene is more eclectic than ever, with the likes of Fontaines D.C. AE MAK, Pillow Queens and Loah charging the way to make music history of their own. As you’d expect from such a rich musical city, there are loads of record stores in Dublin. Here are some that we can’t wait to re-visit:
Where? – 7, Dawson Street // The Eason’s Building, Lower O’Connell Street
Tower Records is proud to be Ireland’s largest independent record store, with two stores in the heart of Dublin city specialising in music, films and merchandise. The two stores are the home of Ireland’s largest vinyl selection and are proud to be selling a massive range of DVDs and Blu-rays (if that’s your thing too).
They have hosted some HUGE artists for in-store performances, including Bjork, Macklemore, James Vincent McMorrow, Lykke Li, Shane MacGowan, and even Fall Out Boy! They also stock all the musical equipment you’ll need to set up your own home studio. You have to check this place out!
Where? – 4, Crow Street
All-City Records specialise in two of hip-hop’s five integral elements: DJing and graffiti. Opened in 2001, All-City is proud to be a heritage hub for underground street culture in Dublin. All-City stock a brilliant range of obscure vinyl and is the place to come for all your street art supplies, too. Specialising in contemporary underground dance music, funk and hip-hop, they cover musical areas that other stores have a habit of overlooking.
After starting their own record label in 2003, All-City has grown into one of the most influential labels in Dublin, releasing records from Onra, Knxwledge, XXXY and Machinedrum.
Where? – 15A, Wicklow Street
Freebird Records was established way back in 1978. After moving a few times, Freebird Records now resides in the Secret Book And Record Store, stocking an amazing selection of new and second-hand records across most genres.
Musical icons often visit the shop, including Andre 3000, Sinead O’Connor, Bob Geldof, Robert Plant, and loads more. This is a great spot for any keen readers too as the Secret Bookshop stocks over 2,000 titles.
Where? – 8, Crow Street
R.A.G.E. stocks a massive range of vinyl and the staff are thoroughly knowledgeable and happy to help with anything. If you’re on the hunt for that old, hard to find album, this is probably one of the best spots to head to. They specialise in LPs and 7″ singles spanning soul, jazz, reggae, rock, metal, pop, indie and punk.
Not only do they stock an amazing selection of records, but they also specialise in retro video games and stock NES, SNES, N64, GameCube, Megadrive, Saturn, Dreamcast, Playstation 1, consoles and accessories with loads of classic Mario, Zelda, Metroid, Pokemon games and super-rare titles spanning all gaming consoles.
Where? – 32, Market Arcade
Spindizzy stocks a broad range of records, with loads of rare ones hidden amongst its crates. Decent value can be expected here too. They specialise in reggae, but stock vinyl and CDs across genres from indie, disco, funk, house, Balearic and psych.
They pride themselves on their friendly and helpful service, so don’t hesitate to ask if you have any questions!
Start with these and then explore even further! Dublin is one of Ireland’s most renowned music cities, and there is always somewhere new to explore for your next vinyl fix! Don’t forget how good some charity shops can be if you’re on a bit more of a budget.
You can find out more about what life in Dublin is like, here.