Best Record/CD Store - 2006
Readers' Choice: Uncle Sam's
As the name suggests, CD Collector wants to unburden you of those extra discs piling up at the back of your music collection. If they're in good shape and not especially lame (e.g., Pat Boone's heavy metal album), bring 'em in for either cash or store credit. If your CDs are scratched-up or played-out, then bring cash -- you'll need some form of currency after perusing the assorted CDs, records, DVDs, T-shirts, and other music-related knickknacks you'll inevitably haul up to the register. While there are plenty of hip-hop and dance CDs to go around, the store is especially heavy on rock -- indie, punk, classic, new wave, etc. For your convenience, the more spin-worthy LPs are hung on the wall, including reissues of the Clash's self-titled album ($13.95) and Suicide's 1/2 Alive ($12.95). The thousands of used LPs in the main bin are a bit cheaper but still far above dollar-bin quality. Speaking of dollar deals, a buck is all you pay for each of the CDs stored in the back of the shop (across from the Numark DJ packages, which run $275 to $385 for dual turntable kits). A dollar also gets you one of those old-school punk, ska, and Oi! buttons you won't find at Hot Topic. Of course, after a trip to CD Collector, you've got no reason to do your music shopping at the mall.