Solaris on tour: Amsterdam calling! Part 2

Another day, another Amsterdam adventure! 

After checking out the local art scene it was time to investigate the local record shop infrastructure. Thanks to some hot tips from the staff at Mary Go Wild I realized that weed wasn’t the only dope shit that can be purchased in the Dutch capital! There are many many record shops all over the place and during the short period of time available to me I was at least able to hit two: Concerto and Record Friend.

How can you not check out a store that claims to be your record buddy? And sure as hell this shop had some great treasures for me to unearth!

It’s no secret I am a big fan of bargain digging so the 5€ section was where I focussed my attention on. As the store had a massive second hand section I focussed on the Funk/Soul/Disco side of things to stay sane and keep it moving.

The artworks alone had me drooling: I just love a good cheesy cover. Especially the vintage disco 12″ sleeves were absolute killer and I had to make a couple of purchases…

One big find for me was the soundtrack of “The Last Dragon”… a Motown produced Kung Fu Fantasy movie from 1985 that tried to jump on the Bruce Lee bandwagon by telling the story of Bruce Leroy (!) who protects a damsel in distress against the evil shogun of Harlem: Sho’Nuff!

Being endowed with this powerful Kung Fu artefact I tried to challenge the local Shaolin monks to a duel but they all refused the challenge politely. I would have totally kicked their butts and they knew it! WHO IS THE MASTER?!

Next up was Concerto which I ran into by chance. Totally expecting that it was for classic music only I was surprised by the massive vinyl shop that spanned across three big rooms and a nice cafe next to it. If this is how Amsterdam rolls vinyl wise it’s a diggers paradise!

A sweet selection of record players and vinyl related accessories… LIKE!

As a proud 45/7 Vinyl Club artist of cause I had to rush straight to the 7″ section. More great covers but as time was ticking I had no chance to really get digging which was a shame! But there is always next time… 

Great items all over the place! I definitely have to return to this record oasis.

After this vinyl excursion I had to refuel my batteries with some traditional Dutch treats: Cheese, Beer and raw pork mince aka Mett! I am very font of this manly dish but normally would consume it for breakfast on a bread roll when back in Germany, not as an afternoon snack straight from a cheeseboard! Ah well, tasty nevertheless… 

After refuelling I had to hit three more stores I spotted on the way to the pub: Henk Comics, CIA Comics Import Amsterdam and Outland Designer Toys

I love comic books and comic book movies ( Bats in my favorite naturally ) but I rarely pick up new issues these days. There is just so much out there and space in my small flat is of an issue! I still love going to comic stores though to suck in all the geekiness and fanboyism of the comic world!

Henk Comics welcomed me with a Star Wars themed floormat and kinda set the theme for my visit. Loved the sexy Stormtrooper cosplay… and the SpiderGwen cover art wasn’t too shabby either!

More comics and more collectibles at CIA! When it comes to digging it seems the comic world has much in common with the vinyl world: It’s all about going on the hunt and getting surprised…

There was so much great artwork on display it was hard to concentrate. Really need to draw more! Oh and much props to the person who dares to purchase that JarJar backpack. #walkofshame 

Now sufficiently warmed up I was ready to hit the main event: Amsterdams No.1 Designer Toy store Outland! The 4ft KAWS companion in the shopping window already hinted at the fact that this might be my kinda shopping experience…

Stuffed to the brim with Dunnies, Munnies, Coarse, Funko, Bearbrick, Lego and other great toys I really had to keep my wallet in check! Having had a couple of pints of beer before wasn’t really helping the situation either. 

After a nice chat with the owner Jerome I had to get something so I went surprisingly for a toy that was based off a character from Disney’s Big Hero 6: I always loved the oldskool Kaiju design of Fred’s super suit! The big bulky eyes, octopus mouth and weird spikes really reminded me of the Masters of the Universe figure Mantenna as well which I have fond and scared memories of!

As my flight left later the same day I had to rush home and pack my purchases into my already full trolley. God bless, it all managed to get on it’s flight safely back home to London!

What can I say, I really enjoyed Amsterdam! Shoutout to Petros and Andres for inviting me over 🙂 ! The city has loads to offer to the geeky traveller and vinyl record obsessive and it’s relaxed vibe, beautiful canals and architecture are worth a visit too. I definitely will be back, next time with a bigger, emptier record bag!

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