Down & Out in Reno: Recycled Records (Part Two)

recycled records part 2 storefront 2

Sequels are rarely up to the elan of the original work. Likewise, this follow-up to last week’s review of Recycled Records cannot possibly match the entertainment value of the original article.

recycled records part 2 storefrontMy first experience buying at Recycled Records was a fun and fruitful experience – dire urge to find a restroom aside. I managed to pick up two albums I had been looking for at a great price. I had some compact discs at home that I never listened to and decided to take a few of them in for a trade.

While Recycled Records will pay cash for CDs, don’t expect a lot. Even on its website, it warns that the payout is not a lot. Usually trade is the way to go with used record shops. And I wanted some new music anyways.

So I packed a Trader Joe’s paper bag with 18 CDs.  And left my tiny, carpeted prison I call my apartment and walked to Recycled Records to make a trade.

Here is what I took in:

pistolanniesiron maiden final frontiergorillazmoonrise kingdomloto musicsarahbrightman dreamshakira livelumineers

Sarah Brightman Dream Chaser
John Debney Predators (Soundtrack)
Dragonforce Sonic Firestorm
Gorillaz Demon Days
Iron Maiden The Final Frontier
Japan Koto Music Nonesuch Explorer Series
The Lumineers The Lumineers
Brad Paisley Wheelhorse
Brad Paisley Time Well Wasted
Pistol Annies Hell on Heels
Ennio Morricone The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly (Soundtrack)
Original Soundtrack Moonrise Kingdom
Original Soundtrack Sucker Punch
Various The Rocky Story
Shakira Live off the Record
John Williams Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
Rage Against the Machine Evil Empire
The Verve Urban Hymns


The clerk refused Brad Paisley’s “Time Well Wasted” and The Verve’s “Urban Hymns” because the store already had too many copies.

As he added up my store credit, I walked around the store. It has a large selection of CDs and DVDs, and is starting to stock used Blu-Ray Discs. CDs, however, were on my mind. Immediately I found a copy of Adam and the Ants first album “Dirk Wears White Sox,” which had a $10 price tag. This is a good punk album, and I’ve been looking for a copy of it, especially the remastered version with bonus tracks.

The clerk told me I had $45 store credit. After browsing for an hour, I picked out eight albums.

adamandtheants dirkgabriel passionbowie lowmoby 18moby everythingbjork selmasongsbjork homogenicbjork debut

Adam and the Ants Dirk Wears White Sox (remastered and expanded)
Björk Debut
Björk Homogenic
Björk Selmasongs
David Bowie Low
Peter Gabriel Passion (Soundtrack for The Last Temptation of Christ)
Moby Everything Is Wrong
Moby 18

For some, this may seem like a bad deal. But both of my kids told me that the trade I got is much better than what they get trading video games as Gamestop. And I got some music that I enjoy.

I published this information to give you an idea of how trade works at Recycled Records. I can’t promise you’ll have the same experience, but I feel the store gave me a fair deal.

If you enjoy music, I recommend you go to Recycled Records, even if it is to just look around. While looking around, I checked out its vinyl selection. Picking up a Yes album, I was reminded of the haptic quality of these large album covers, packed with gatefold sleeves and amazing artwork.

Recycled Records is a local business, so its profits are Reno’s profits. It is run by locals. You save money. The local economy makes money. And we all get to enjoy some bitchin’ tunes. Check it out!

Recycled Records
822 South Virginia Street
Reno, NV 89501
(775) 826-4119
Hours: M-Th 10am-7pm, F-Sa 10am-8pm, Su 12pm-6pm

Copyright 2014 Tony George


Down & Out in Reno: Recycled Records (Part One)

recycled records frontI don’t care how poor you are. You got to have some tunes! It doesn’t matter if you are a living-paycheck-to-paycheck type of poor or the sleeping-under-a-bridge-marinated-in-your-own-urine poor. Music humanizes us. I have had some rough patches in my life, and people love to judge a person for enjoying anything when you are poor as shit.

“How dare you to listen to that Ace of Base CD when you say you can’t find a job. The only sign you should pay attention to is a “Help Wanted” sign.

Screw them. You need some new music. But money is tight. What are you going to do?

A few weeks ago, I was walking along Virginia Street along what has become mid-town Reno. I knew Recycled Records had moved there around December 2012 but had never taken the time to stop and check them out. I had been to the store when it was on Kietzke Lane to buy a ticket to see Kittie, but that was in 2007.

I had been looking for an album by Beck titled “Mutations.” Like most of the music I enjoy, Best Buy and Barnes & Noble don’t stock much by Beck. As I walked past Recycled Records, I decided to enter and take a peek.

Walking into the narrow, cramped store, I looked at a shelf that said “This just in.” And what was there? “Mutations” by Beck. Score! The price was $8 for the used CD, cheaper – and quicker – than ordering on Amazon. I continued to look at CDs, DVDs, and vinyl. The place is packed with merchandise. It even has cassette tapes.

Recycled Records was started in 1978, but its current owner, Paul Doege, purchased it in 1980. Since then it made a few moves around Kietzke Lane until it ended up in Reno’s midtown. This location, while smaller than past places, is at the heart of Reno’s small business and artisan community. It belongs in midtown.

The urge to use a bathroom grew stronger as I walked around, but its bathroom had a sign reading “for employees only.” Not wanting to advance to the later version of poor mentioned in my opening, I decided it was time to take Beck, along with a Moby album, up to Eric and pay up.

I'm easy to please. The CDs were used (of course) but in great shape. For $13, I left Recycled Records with a grin on my face (and the dire urge to use a bathroom -- read the story).

I’m easy to please. The CDs were used (of course) but in great shape. For $13, I left Recycled Records with a grin on my face (and the dire urge to use a bathroom — read the story).

“I just put this Beck CD out there a few minutes ago,” Eric said.

“This is the exact item I was looking for. Have you heard his new album?” I said.

“No, I ordered it, but it hasn’t arrived. How is it?” Eric asked.

“Great. It reminds me a lot of ‘Sea Change,’ a low-key affair,” I said.

“So it’s kind of like ‘Mutations’ then?”

“Now that I think about it, yes.”

I asked him about the stores trading and selling policy. He said an appointment is required if I want to sell some used CDs for cash, but for trades, anytime is fine. He also said trade value was higher than cash value.

I have plenty of CDs I do not like and decided a trade would be a good way to get rid of my Pistol Annies CD and get something I like.

From this first real visit and purchase, I found Recycled Records to have some great deals. If it has more than four copies of an album, Recycled Records will cut the price in half. Most CDs sell for $8 used, but Recycled Records will take $2 off the total if you buy two. In my case, thanks to our shared respect for Beck, Eric charged me $13 for the Beck and Moby albums.

Did I return with some CDs to trade? You bet I did. How well the trade went, and more about my adventures at Recycled Records will be featured in part two.

And, yes, I did find a bathroom in time.

Recycled Records
822 South Virginia Street
Reno, NV 89501
(775) 826-4119
Hours: M-Th 10am-7pm, F-Sa 10am-8pm, Su 12pm-6pm

Copyright 2014 Tony George