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The Record Exchange - Culture Spot

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[ 2016 staff picks ]

2016 staff picks

After weeks of scrutiny, Record Exchange staffers have completed their 2016 Top 10 lists. Visit the store to view the lists in realtime and preview our picks. Let the judgment begin!


[ payette brewing company ]

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The Record Exchange is a proud partner with Boise's Payette Brewing Company! Enjoy Payette Brewing Company beer (and for free!) at Record Exchange events such as Record Store Day, the annual holiday Bonus Club Sale and select live music events!


[ go listen boise ]

go listen boise

Go Listen Boise is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization with the mission of fostering a vibrant and diverse musical culture in the Boise area.


[ rx amazon store ]

rx amazon store

Visit The Record Exchange's Amazon Marketplace store to shop for rare and discount CDs, vinyl, DVDs and books. Live in Boise? Order online and arrange for in-store pickup!


[ rx top 10 ]

rx top 10

1. Petals
Elephant Revival
2. A Sailor’s Guide to Earth
Sturgill Simpson
3. One More for the Road
Curtis Stigers
4. The Temple of I and I
Thievery Corporation
5. Blurryface
Twenty One Pilots
6. We Got It From Here … Thank You 4 Your Service
A Tribe Called Quest
7. You Want It Darker
Leonard Cohen
8. Run the Jewels 3
Run the Jewels
9. Lemonade
10. Epoch

[ treefort music fest ]


The Record Exchange is a proud sponsor of the sixth annual Treefort Music Fest, taking place March 22-26 throughout Downtown Boise. Treefort 2017 5-day passes are now on sale at The Record Exchange!


[ sell us your stuff! ]

sell us your stuff!

The Record Exchange buys and trades used CDs, DVDs, Blu-ray discs and vinyl in good condition Monday-Saturday until 9 p.m. and Sunday until 6 p.m.


[ special orders ]

special orders

Can't find it in the store? The Record Exchange does special orders!




countrylips_10-Jake_CliffordPayette Brewing Co. presents the Treefort Music Fest Warmup Party featuring Seattle honky-tonk rockers Country Lips live at The Record Exchange at 6 p.m. First Thursday, March 2. We’ll be serving free Payette Brewing Co. beer for guests 21 and older with I.D. starting at 5:30! As always, this Record Exchange in-store event is free and all ages. Country Lips are performing at the Olympic later that evening and we have tickets for sale at the store!

Treefort Music Fest (March 22-26) is almost here, and we’re ready to start partying. If you don’t have a five-day Treefort pass yet, you can get one at The Record Exchange! You can also enter to win a Treefort pass at the event (must be present to win).

There’s also a First Thursday Treefort Art Walk, with local businesses (including us) featuring Treefort-inspired window art from local artists!


A wily eight-piece band of merry shitkickers from Seattle called Country Lips who specialize in a fortified brand of slap-back, honky-tonk, and countrified rock and roll. If you like Merle Haggard, the Flying Burrito Brothers, and some of Skynyrd’s jukier numbers, you’ll want to step on into this. Their latest full-length, Nothing to My Name, was mixed by Stuart Sikes (Loretta Lynn, White Stripes, Cat Power, Modest Mouse), and with it, the Lips have made giant strides. Out of the gate on “Black Water,” guitar-picked riffs and piano lock in and run together. They’re shooting whiskey while shooting skeet, and they’re nailing the same flying clay target right down the middle every time. Fiddle and mandolin rise out of the breakdown; somebody shimmies in the corner. The room stomps and spins. A three-part harmony rings up the chorus, and the tight-licked riff reloads again. —Trent Moorman, The Stranger

Outlaw spirit has faded since back in the day, but Country Lips might be the pick-me-up line of speed country needs to start kicking ass again. — Keegan Hamilton, LA Weekly, “Badass Country Punk Band Descends on Los Angeles”

Grab your sturdiest dancing boots and your best (well, least threadbare) flannel and be ready for a rowdy ol’ time with a big dose of twang. It’s not the alternative country of today’s big charts; this is more the whiskey-fueled honky-tonk of rustic bars with peanut shells littering the floors. —Geno Thackara, That Mag


TheHandPromoPhto_PThe Record Exchange (1105 W. Idaho St.) is honored to host The Hand Album Release Party at 6pm Thursday, Feb. 23. “Find a Reason” will be available for purchase at the party. As always, this Record Exchange in-store event is free and all ages. The Hand also will be celebrating the release with a special performance at Neurolux Feb. 24 with Cerberus Rex and Mantooth – tickets available at The Record Exchange!


TheHand_FAR.CDThe Hand was formed in 1998 with the intention of the lineup being Pat “Brown” Schmaljohn on bass and vocals, Scott Schmaljohn on guitar and vocals and a drummer that would put up with the Schmaljohn brothers. This plan was cut short with a substance addiction and later death of Pat Brown (RIP) in 1999. Scott and Pat were eager and excited to play together after a break from years of playing, recording and touring in Boise bands State of Confusion (1983-1988) and Treepeople (1988-1992).

Following the tragedy, The Hand’s first lineup included Scott Schmaljohn on guitar and vocals, Darin Dodd on drums and Chris Bock on bass.

TheHandSngleThe Hand currently features Cody Roy (Demoni) on drums, James Johnson (Trigger Itch) on bass and Scott Schmaljohn on guitar and vocals. Uniting in 2014, The Hand had a new vigor, urgency and energy. The Hand was asked to tour in February 2016 on an 11-shows-in-12-days West Coast tour with Built to
Spill. “We were well received on tour, and knew we had to get a new record out,” Scott says.

With this new momentum, chemistry and songwriting, The Hand went into Andy A.’s Chop Shop studio to record nine new songs. “Find a Reason” will be officially released at The Record Exchange release party. The Hand will also have a two-song vinyl 7-inch( limited edition of 30, signed and numbered) for sale at both shows.

The Hand is planning tour dates in the spring, as well as playing Treefort Music Fest Wednesday, March 22 at Neurolux.


Lydia_Loveless_Horizonal_David_T_Kindler_Girls_StyleLydia Loveless will perform live at The Record Exchange (1105 W. Idaho St. in Downtown Boise) at 6pm Monday, Feb. 6. Loveless is performing at Neurolux later in the evening and we have tickets for sale at the store. As always, this Record Exchange in-store event is free and all ages.


BS239_lydialoveless_real_LPcover1600_1Blessed with a commanding, blast-it-to-the-back-of-the-room voice, the 25-year-old Lydia Loveless was raised on a family farm in Coshocton, Ohio—a small weird town with nothing to do but make music. With a dad who owned a country music bar, Loveless often woke up with a house full of touring musicians scattered on couches and floors. She has turned this potential nightmare scenario (eww….touring musicians smell…) into a wellspring of creativity.

When she got older, in the time-honored traditions of teenage rebellion, she turned her back on these roots, moved to the city (Columbus, Ohio) and immersed herself in the punk scene, soaking up the musical and attitudinal influences of everyone from Charles Bukowski to Richard Hell to Hank III.

Loveless’s Bloodshot debut album Indestructible Machine combined heady doses of punk rock energy and candor with the country classicism she was raised on and just can’t shake; it was a gutsy and unvarnished mash-up. It channeled ground zero-era Old 97s (with whom she later toured), but the underlying bruised vulnerability came across like Neko Case’s tuff little sister. Indestructible Machine possesses a snotty irreverence and lyrical brashness that’s an irresistible kick in the pants.

On her second Bloodshot album Somewhere Else, released after a few 7″ singles and an EP, Loveless was less concerned with chasing approval – she scrapped an entire album’s worth of material before writing the set – and more focused on fighting personal battles of longing and heartbreak, and the aesthetic that comes along with them. While her previous album was described as “hillbilly punk with a honky-tonk heart” (Uncut), this one couldn’t be so quickly shoehorned into neat categorical cubbyholes. No, things were different this time around—Loveless and her band collectively dismissed the genre blinders and sonic boundaries that came from playing it from a safe, familiar place. Creatively speaking, if Indestructible Machine was an all-night bender, Somewhere Else was the forlorn twilight of the next day, when that creeping nostalgia has you looking back for someone, something, or just… anything.

2016’s Real is one of those exciting records where you sense an artist truly hitting their stride, that their vision is both focused and expansive, and that their talent brims with a confident sense of place, execution and exploration. Whether you’ve followed Lydia’s career forever, like us, or if you are new to her ample game, Real is gonna grab your ears.

On her first two Bloodshot albums, there were fevered comparisons to acknowledged music icons like Loretta Lynn, Stevie Nicks, Replacements, and more. She’s half this, half that, one part something else. We hate math. But, now Real and Lydia Loveless are reference points of their own. Genre-agnostic, Lydia and her road-tightened band pull and tease and stretch from soaring, singalong pop gems, roots around the edges to proto-punk. There are many sources, but the album creates a sonic center of gravity all its own.

Always a gifted writer with a lot to say, Lydia gives the full and sometimes terrifying, sometimes ecstatic force of the word. Struggles between balance and outburst, infectious choruses fronting emotional torment are sung with a sneer, a spit, or a tenderness and openness that is both intensely personal and universally relatable. It is, as the title suggests, real.

Lydia Loveless has toured with artists such as Old 97s, Drive-By Truckers, Jason Isbell, Iron & Wine, Scott H. Biram, and the Supersuckers. Her music has been praised by Rolling Stone, NPR, Pitchfork, SPIN, Stereogum, Chicago Tribune, and more.

Loveless penned an original song for the 2015 film I Smile Back, starring Sarah Silverman, and was the subject of the 2016 documentary Who Is Lydia Loveless?, directed by Gorman Bechard.