DVD Review: "Last Shop Standing"

"Last Shop Standing"

Director: Pip Piper

Producers: Blue Hippo Media, Proper Music Publishing

Running time: 54 minutes; 75 minutes of bonus footage

Release date: April 20

A documentary based on Graham Jones' book about the rise, fall and rebirth of independent record stores in the United Kingdom, "Last Shop Standing" lands stateside as the official film of Record Store Day 2013. The stories aren't much different from the anecdotes told by those who revered U.S. shops from the '60s through the end of the 20th century, libraries and clubhouses filled with unknown treasures and well-informed clerks holding the keys to discovery. The United Kingdom and the States differ only in the effect that supermarkets had in driving out the little guys, once grocery stores stocked CDs. Paul Weller, Johnny Marr, Billy Bragg and Richard Hawley are among the musicians providing the stories about neighborhood shops that held sway over their musical training. But it's the store owners themselves who give "Last Shop Standing" its charm and character, whether they be veterans of the industry who have fought a good fight or newcomers turning kids on to the joy of vinyl. Footage late in the film reveals the intensity and popularity of Record Store Day as an international event.

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