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Thursday, 20 January 2011

Venn St. Records, Clapham

There’s a musical slant to two recent Clapham openings. Ousting what was Rinky Dink, purveyors of holiday-in-E-beefa house, Hed Kandi, have launched their first ever bar. All Barbarella 60’s moderne, it’s as slick as a Joey Negro MP3 download. But, having recently re-invested in a Technics turntable - David Guetta, beware! - I’m nowadays more inclined to vinyl, the old skool theme spun at Venn St. Records at the common end of the high street. Take Rob’s record shop from Nick Hornby’s High Fidelity, light it neon red, cover the walls in collages clipped from vintage issues of Sounds and NME, throw in a buzzy bar, et voilĂ ! Unlike Si’s sorry karaoke shenanigans, VSR genuinely has the X-Factor. My instant crush on this little neighbourhood sweetheart may owe much to hit £7 cocktails served 2-4-1 before 7pm, except on Saturday: Spun Agave, AC/Daiquiri and Raisins’N’Apricots (an apricot-infused bourbon and sherry Old Fashioned) top my chart and, in at No. 4 with a Bulleit (well, Jack Daniel's, to be pedantic) is minty, peary, apple-y Stairs Julep. Open until 1 am, occasional live music is provided by local duo, Redgrave, whose Kylie and Oasis covers, although listenable enough, suggest any debut album will not bother Buddy, The Beatles or other legends whose LP sleeves are displayed within. A barman tells me the vinyl is for sale. £10 secures a pot luck pick. I'd be gutted to get the Jackie Genova Aerobic Workout LP, prominent above the bar: I picked that up at Oxfam for my aunt  a few years back. Cost, 5p. 
78 Venn St SW4  7738 8645  www.vennstreetrecords.com