What do Jamie XX, Bob Odenkirk and Derrick Carter have in common? They have all shopped at Portland’s Anthem Records. Stocked with electronic, avant garde and heavy metal music, Anthem has been selling new and used vinyl and CD’s since 2004.
Most of Anthem’s new items are from the Anthem, LoDubs and Losonofono labels. “Anthem tends to be heavy metal, drone and experimental,” explains store owner, Jon AD. “LoDubs is a garage label, or what was called ‘dubstep’ before that tag became wore widely known as midrange to heavy EDM music. Losofono started out as a Chicago house label in the 90s that now releases the synthesizer funk genre known as ‘skweee.”
Jon goes on to explain that the store was not always focused on these types of music. “I used to be located in a fancier area of town, and thus had all kinds of requests for the big rock band of the moment, which I spent loads of effort chasing, only to end up with unsold stock. As soon as I relocated to a place a little off of the beaten path, I dove head first into more underground genres.”
Jon began selling music in the early 90s. “My first experience selling records was setting up a DBA and getting a wholesale account with a distro called Watts back in 1993. I would pass a list around to people in Eugene, collect orders, and then deliver the records by bicycle.”
Today, Jon believes running Anthem Records has changed his life. “For those who have stores and embrace engaging customers in conversation, to see them come back all lit up when you recommended something is a powerful drug!”
Be sure to stop by Anthem Records’ booth at the Crate Diggers record fair at White Owl Social Club on August 23rd. Whether you are interested in skweee, or want to talk heavy metal hollow earth theories, the staff at Anthem will be there to chat and make listening recommendations.
Want to see more about Jon AD and Anthem Records? Watch this Discogs feature video.