How many record stores open at 7am?
Part record store and part cafe, Alley Tunes is one of a kind. Tucked into an alcove opposite Glenferrie Station and Swinburne University, the shop offers visitors a great spot to hang out, grab a coffee or stop for a dig.
Alley Tunes has been selling vinyl since 1994. It was a favourite of current owners Max Le Bras and Fabrice Lemoyne, who bought the shop on the cheap in 2007.
The shop makes the most of a small amount of space. Warm, earthy colours make the inside space feel homey, where thousands of new and second-hand records sit in recycled wooden shelves. A big turnover means there’s a good chance you’ll strike gold in the famous $5 bargain bin.
Alley specialises in house, techno and other electronic music. Around 50 per cent of the stock fits this description. Jazz, blues, Afro and more make up the rest. Expect to find pressings from seminal labels such as Harthouse, Ninja Tune, R&S, Warp Records and F Communications.
Records are handpicked and predominantly imported from Europe, though there’s a smaller selection from the US and local distributors too. Le Bras and Lemoyne will also buy your collection, should you be looking to sell.
Sit down outside or enjoy a coffee to go, courtesy of beans from Balwyn roastery Caffé Romeo. There isn’t much in the way of substantial meals, but there are great French waffles and baked goods from Waffle On and Little Bertha.