Hello There, Sunrise

Ages ago, we had a Music World in our shite little mall. They closed and I panicked. Then HMV took over and I felt better. As you all know, HMV closed out, and I panicked. But then Sunrise Records took over some of HMV’s spots and, when I found out we were getting one, I felt better. Apparently, these comings and goings are a bit of a rollercoaster for me. In my defense, if we didn’t have a corporate store like this, we’d be stuck with Wal-Mart and that one used shoppe downtown that, well, anyway.

Yesterday I spent about twenty minutes perusing our new Sunrise records. Apparently the shoppe’s already been open for about a week, but I just haven’t had time to get there before this. I wanted to see what was up.

It’s music store ver.3 in my town!

Some First Impressions:

– it really hasn’t changed all that much in appearance (yet, they may change more with time). Pretty sure they just re-used all the old HMV CD bins and everything.

– both staff members I saw working were from the old HMV, so at least a couple of the HMV staffers applied and got the new (old) job with Sunrise.

– I was approached by one staffer to see if I needed help, and I did – I’d looked and did not see the new Solstafir set. I’d have bought it if they had it. Not only had she never heard of them, they didn’t have a section for them in the shelves, and the deluxe wasn’t on their tiny end cap of boxed sets either. It didn’t seem likely they would be getting it either, so I guess it’s the Amazons for me, on that one.

– there are WAY more CDs than HMV ever had. This is awesome. The entire row that used to be DVD and Blu-ray in the HMV are now all CDs as well. This makes me incredibly happy. They do still have movies, at the back of the store, but music is clearly the focal point. Yay!

– CD prices seemed to be OK, maybe a wee bit higher (by $1-$2) than HMV would have done, but I’ve no way of proving that.

– they had a $5.99 CD wall, but it was all those ICON hits set CDs. Meh. Will see if they change things up, but if not I’ll miss HMV’s 2-for-$10 and 2-for-$20 sales racks.

– the LP section is much expanded, and moved front and center by the entrance, so the hipsters can’t miss it. I found most priced too high (like all places), but it’s nice to see them offering the hipsters of my town a new copy of OK Computer for $45.99 (it can be had for $30 online, shipping included). Some of the vinyls were better-priced, around $20-25, but I’d need more time to really dig.

– Punk and metal, in both CD and LP sections, are mixed into one category. Which means it’s possible that Gojira and Green Day might sit side by side in the bin. That’s OK, I guess, but a bit weird.

– There was no Guided By Voices section. While I am not surprised, this is still an oversiiiiight.

– Just testing things out, I looked for myself, then asked and… it turns out they did not have the new Kendrick Lamar album, called DAMN. (on CD or LP). This is quite weird, as it’s a huge record right now. The staffer said they may get it in soon, as their stock is still coming. They’d better!

– I found the 16’ of shelving for board games, and the entire wall of t-shirts (not to mention the other section full of crap tchotchkes, just like HMV had), to be a bit much, but after texting this to James he said (and he’s right) that no store can make it on music alone, anymore. Still, are board games that popular? Is this the new thing that hipsters will want so they can leave our LPs the hell alone? Do we need that many Ramones t-shirts? Hm. Maybe on that last point, we do…

– I didn’t see video games, but I wasn’t looking for them as I don’t play them. I assume they were at the back of the store, with the movies. Not a huge footprint for them, anyway.

In Sum:

It’s nice to have another record shoppe in town. Panic averted! I didn’t buy anything today, but I’m sure I will at some point. With only 20 minutes in the shoppe, I don’t feel I really had time to get to know it, but my first impressions are, by my gut feel, that it’s gonna do alright. I’m super-thrilled with how many more CDs they offer over the (in comparison) pathetic wee patch that HMV offered. Yes indeed, that’s great.

Alright Sunrise, time to make a go of it. Drop your LP prices and increase your sales, and you’ll have reason to stay!


Posted on June 6, 2017, in posts by aaron and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 17 Comments.

  1. I’ve never heard of this store or HMV. They must not have made it down this way yet.
    We have an FYE at our tiny mall, but I’m not sure our Walmart even sells CDs anymore. I usually head to Amazon instead of bothering with the limited selection I get at the store.


    • Well, HMV is unlikely to be going anywhere, now, as they’ve shut down! However, I’ve never heard of FYE up here in Canuckland, so I suppose it’s just a regional thing with these smaller companies. Funny, calling Sunrise smaller, though, as it’s a national chain. Anyway.

      Our Wally does still sell CDs. They have a $5 bin which I hate because everything is just pitched in (literally) and you have to dig through. They have about 12′ of double-sided CD shelves otherwise, one 4′ section is new releases. Not exactly a lot of stuff.

      Agreed, it’s Amazon for anything beyond stuff you’d find anywhere. I just ordered the Solstafir last night!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve only checked out the Sunrise in Ottawa once because it isn’t close to the areas of town that I frequent. However, it seemed decent enough. Vinyl prices were average and selection was serviceable but I imagine the latter will improve with time. I’ll return at some point, I’m sure.


    • Does Ottawa have more than one Sunrise location? Seems like they oughta. Yup, selection was OK – better than HMV, to be honest. As it’s only two blocks from my house, I’m sure I’ll check in “now and again…” 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • I believe there are two right now but the other one is even further out of the way. But that’s fine, I’m not sure I would want a record store two blocks away. So dangerous.


        • Haha yeah the proximity is dangerous, but it’s worse where I work. I’m in charge of the books and music in a thrift shop – I see everything before it hits the sales floor. You wanna talk about attempts at restraint! Haha wheee!

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Ah great! I wouldn’t expect their prices to drop but just enjoy being able to browse in a good store.

    As for board games, what’s wrong with that? I’m hoping to pick up a new RISK board at Sunrise this summer, just have to choose one. You’re not going to find those games at your local Wally World.


    • Yeah, it’s a relief to have something in there – if Sunrise wants it, they fit the bill!

      I don’t think of board games when I think of music stores, so it was disorienting. Honestly, I don’t think of board games much at all (not a fan, really). However, if they sell, power to them. Our Wally has a whole section of games, doesn’t yours? Or Toys R Us? Hell, even Amazon. Let the music store have more music, I say! 🙂


      • The days of music stores selling just music are long gone. Look at Sonic Boom…even BGO sells board games. The games that Sunrise sells here are more for fans and collectors and you won’t find them at Wally World.

        Don’t forget Sunrise also specialize in movies. It makes sense that they’d sell stuff like Star Wars Monopoly. And board games > video games big time!


        • Yeah I know, I’m just a dinosaur ranting that music stores oughta just sell music. All this other stuff just takes up valuable shelf space for more music! Why, back in my day… rantrantrant…

          I wouldn’t know if they were hard to get games or not. I didn’t even really look, just walked past.

          If Sunrise specializes in movies, they sure gave them less real estate in this store than the HMV ever did. Maybe it’s quality over quantity. Ours is a smaller location, too, so maybe that’s a factor…


          • Our Sunrise has about half the store for movies and merch. But before they closed they were moving towards the movies being the majority. They even had a huge used DVD section but I prefer it without the used.


  4. Much as I like movies, nice to hear the emphasis has returned to CDs!


  5. I’ve been waiting to see if Sunrise was going to open in the Upper Canada mall in Newmarket to replace the closed down HMV…but the place is always so packed, the hubs and I haven’t made it in in the last few months. We made it to HMV when they were shutting down though. Got some deals on DVDs and a Mortal Kombat tee. lol


  6. Always good to have a wee dig in a newly opened music store, I reckon. Board games and music makes perfect sense to me. We often dig out one of the games we have and spin some records.


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