With nowhere to buy bass-heavy records in Melbourne, local DJ Rob Graham took matters into his own hands. A home business became Gutterhype Records – first on Johnston Street in Collingwood, then in the backstreets of Brunswick – in 2014, before evolving into Special Request two years later.
Around 3000 dubstep, techno, drum and bass, house and reggae titles sit in-store on old benches from Museum Victoria. Fresh records arrive weekly from some of the world’s biggest retailers, including Berlin’s Hardwax and London’s SRD. Both new and secondhand, they’re priced to sell and move very quickly.
Graham and his staff also set up a coffee cart, stocked by local distributors. Beans are courtesy of Gravity Espresso. If you’re hungry, a rotating selection of muffins, muesli bars and Jerked meats are also available. The shop backs onto the Batman Royale: a refurbished textiles warehouse now home to the Batman Market, various event spaces and a large commercial kitchen. You’ll often find Graham and the Special Request staff performing in the area.
If you can’t make it to Special Request in person, check out the Discogs page for home delivery.