First of all, I have to say this. The store is a small space, so don't be expecting something like a massive t-shirt selection, but for the time being, you will find an abundance of vintage products from the vinyl selection to, get this, cassettes and VHS tapes, which is amazing and especially if you're a collector. There's also a bin with a small selection of CDs available as well as a small selection of t-shirts, there's books and a bulletin board with lots of pins and a select number of patches. Some of the vinyls available really caught me by surprise because there were some titles that seem impossible to find these days, especially on vinyl. For example, titles like Tyran Pace's Long Live Metal, Leatherwolf's self-titled album, Max Webster's Universal Juveniles, Possessed's Eyes Of Horror, and Judas Priest's Unleashed In The East just to name a few are available for purchase. There's even a section of the wall known as the "Headhunter Wall" where it's copies of Krokus' Headhunter that people have donated to the store. Something I think is super cool. Some of the t-shirts you will find include Accept, Scorpions, Raven, Saint Vitus and Mercyful Fate to name a few. On the walls, you will see a ton of posters that are for decoration as well as a couple of flags of Iron Maiden, Motorhead, Slaughter, Cauldron and Pantera.
Stained Class Records may be a small space, but everything I mentioned above is only a portion of all the great products they have for sale. If you're a metalhead craving for some killer vintage products like some of the great titles on vinyl that you wouldn't have been able to find anywhere else, or VHS tapes or cassettes, Stained Class Records has it all for you with much more stuff coming in
Written by Alex Stojanovic
Photography: Alex Stojanovic & Rob Botten
Photo edit: Navneet Johal & Rob Botten
Interviewer: Alex Stojanovic
Video Copy, and edit: Rob Botten & Alex Stojanovic
@ Stained Class Records
1614 Queen St. West
Toronto, ON Canada
For quite a while now, Toronto was in desperate need of a new metal store. With the recent announcement that HMV is closing all across the country, there is going to be only a limited amount of places left that metalheads are going to be getting CDs and vinyl and most of those places are the independent music stores. There's still some great places in Toronto to purchase vinyl and CDs like Mike's Music, Kops Records, Sonic Boom and Cosmos Records, but there was a void for a place that caters to strictly rock and metal fans. To the surprise of many metalheads from Toronto and surrounding areas, back in December just before Christmas, that void was filled with a new metal store. The new store is the one and only Stained Class Records, which is located at the back of Parkdale Platters record store at 1614 Queen Street W.
Photo: Rob Botten
THE INTERVIEW WITH INTI PAREDES
Photo: Alex Stojanovic
February 18th, which was a rather warm Saturday night, saw metalheads gather at Stained Class for the grand opening to watch store-runners Inti Paredes and Ian Kilpatrick perform short sets with their respective bands: Manacle and Chainbreaker, as well as to purchase some of the killer vinyl titles, t-shirts, VHS tapes, cassettes, pins and patches available in the store. Being it was a small space, there was obviously no room for moshing, so all we could do was headbang and throw the horns.
With fake chains wrapped around the mic stands, Manacle kicked off the festivities with some ass-kicking speed metal. Vocalist Kevin Pereira unleashed some awesome high notes and the band as a whole displayed great energy even though the space was limited. Bassist Shawn Vincent had a bit of the Lemmy look with the sunglasses and a thick moustache. Their show was ended with a new song that they said isn't even titled yet. Very solid performance.
Chainbreaker finished the night off with a slightly longer performance. Their performance included a portion of the lights being turned off for enhancement. Like Manacle, the band displayed great energy and put on a great performance with short but energetic tunes. They were more in the vein of New Wave Of British Heavy Metal. After performing their set, they treated us to an encore. After Chainbreaker's performance, the store was open to everyone to browse and buy.
I think that putting on little in-store show every once in a while is a great way to attract a great group of people to the store because they can see their favourite local bands, plus have the opportunity to make some purchases. I think it would make a good business plan. The grand opening was just the first, and I'm sure there will be more to come. With all that said, it was a great way to celebrate the opening of Toronto's new destination for all things metal and hard rock. Go check out Stained Class Records, and pick up some killer stuff. I'm sure you will love what you find.
Photo: Alex Stojanovic