Established in 1981, Polyester Records is one of Melbourne’s longest standing record stores. When the store originally opened its doors onto a yet-to-become-hip Brunswick Street, the CD hadn't been unleashed on the world and the vinyl revival of the '00s was still two decades away years away.
In the years since, CDs have come (and some would say gone) and the iPod and MP3 have revolutionised the music industry. Yet, Polyester still manages to retain its place as one of Melbourne’s leading independent record stores.
Polyester has a rich history within Melbourne’s diverse music culture; the website proudly proclaims they are “dedicated to supporting independent music both locally and from overseas”. No idle words, they ring true before even walking through the door, as a sandwich board lists the week’s newest releases in exuberant chalk script. But when one does walk through the door, the packages holding these luxurious acetate discs of love are eagerly awaiting. However, it’s not just about the records – Polyester also stocks an extensive range of DVDs and CDs, as well as selling concert tickets and books.
They say a business is only as strong as the people who run it and this hints at why Polyester has endured for so long without any sign of decline. The staff manning the decks at Polyester seem to give the impression that helping you out, whatever the enquiry, is actually a pleasure – as if sharing their passion for music in a tangible form makes you a comrade somehow. Which is nice, really.