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The $4 Bin – Volume 1

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Call me old fashioned, but I still buy CDs. In fact, I have an addiction to buying CDs. Over the years, the number of discs I’ve bought and sold (and bought again) has numbered into the several thousand. I haven’t bought into the MP3 revolution, since I do frequently hear a drop in quality in the converted format, and since I have invested a small fortune in my stereo components (which also help highlight the new medium’s shortcomings). And, I have a crappy internet connection at home, which would force me to tie up my lines for hours on end just to harvest the fruits of the online revolution.

Fortunately, there’s a great independent record store in town that provides me with my fix.

The best part about the store is not that they stock over 10,000 CDs (which is great), or that they have twice that many selections on vinyl (also great), but that they have a high rotation $4 CD selection ($8 for double discs) where, if you scour them regularly, you can find some gems that were inexplicably missing from your collection.

Here are a few of the discs that I’ve recently unearthed in the $4 bin, but whose music is worth paying full price for:

The Rolling Stones – Hot Rocks 1964-1971 (double CD, $8) – What a find! These are not the most recent remasters reviewed elsewhere on Blogcritics, but since I don’t plan to upgrade to the new technology, I don’t care. The discs sound great. Unless you want “Hang Fire” in your collection, the casual fan of the Stones could get away with just owning this double album. And what a (literally) crushing loss: the first day I brought the disc home, I accidentally cracked disc two — the superior of the two discs — when I was putting my baby to bed. Now, none of my CD players can read the darn thing. Sigh.

Paul Simon – Rhythm of the Saints – the follow up to Graceland, this disc may be even better, melding the native sounds of South America with Simon’s introspective lyrics and wispy voice.

Weezer – Weezer – Why this hasn’t been in my collection is beyond me. Actually, I know why: when the disc first hit, led by “The Sweater Song,” I found the group just a bit too arch and “wink-wink” ironic for my tastes. But the power pop is just too infectious. A great disc.

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  • Eric Olsen

    Very nice Ross – what finds! We are simpatico, bro.