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Have HMV given up?

March 8th, 2011 · Posted by Skuds in Life · 3 Comments · Life

I went into Crawley’s HMV the other day.  What a shock that was.

There is now a huge space devoted to electronic gadgets: iPads, PlayStations, iPods, etc. and naturally rafts of expensive accessories for all of them.  It is all very nicely laid out too – low counters with lots of these toys on display where they can be touched and played with.  I was slightly impressed, but there was something wrong that I couldn’t quite put my finger on.

Then it came to me: isn’t this vast space full of electronic toys where all the music used to be?   Where is all the music?

There is still the few racks of three-for-a-tenner bargains at the front, along with the current chart, but for anything even slightly obscure or for back catalogue there are a few measly racks at the back.  It has almost got to the point where I have more titles on CD at home than HMV have in their shop.

This would not be too bad were it not for the fact that HMV was just about the last chain selling music in any quantity that even pretended to go much beyond the charts and popular ‘greatest hits’ bargains and having seen Our Price fold, WH Smith give up and most independents get forced out of business there really is no other option than Amazon left, which is OK but deprives us of the pleasure of browsing.

HMV might as well just call themselves a DVD shop now.  I can’t even get angry about it since I know that I am as much to blame for this as anybody, and my own purchasing habits have contributed to the demise of the business.

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3 Comments so far ↓

  • Danivon

    I had similar thoughts about HMV. They recently opened up a shop in Rugby, which until then had only second-hand shops or supermarkets that sold CDs and DVDs.

    But, they also went heavy on the games. The problem was that they were next door to Game, around the corner from a Gamestation, and as far the other way from a CEX.

    The music section was tiny and outside the chart stuff and compilations was barely worth looking through.

    It closed last month.

  • skud's sister

    Went into the HMV in Ipswich today (killing time waiting for Annie to wake up!) and I was actually quite impressed with the range. There was a lot of game related stuff and the ground floor was all sale, chart and games but upstairs was great. A good range (including sections for hip-hop, metal, dance, easy listening, classical, jazz and folk as well as rock & pop) and some good space-planning. I’d not seen the music videos and books stocked alongside the cds before – we usually have to search for them!
    In conclusion, not all bad news, so we should praise good practice where we see it.

    • Skuds

      Sounds OK if it lasts.
      Our one used to have genre sections that were OK for browsing – though they kept shrinking until the last one to have any real range was metal.

      A few years ago the reggae used to have such delights as the Greensleeves ones with umpteen versions of the same rhythm track now it has not much than a few greatest hits and compilations.

      Feeling nostalgic for Downtown Records in Basildon…