Minus Zero / Stand Out Records
Sadly, Portobello's conjoined record shops at Blenheim Crescent, 'Minus Zero Records' and 'Stand Out Records' closed down today. The shop, originally known as 'Plastic Passion' in the 1980s, split in two when the owners fell out: Bill Forsyth launched Minus Zero Records and Bill Allerton, Stand Out Records. All iterations of the shop have been great places to buy punk and post-punk records; as well as a great source for 1960s and 1970s rock.
Both of the Bills will continue to sell records via the web but after so many years bobbing about behind their shop counters - after another falling out - and with rent increases looming, they both felt ready to shut shop.
In the left-hand corner; Minus Zero.
In the right-hand corner; we have Stand Out Records
It was always a great place to buy 60s pop and 70s punk/new wave and will be missed not only for the browsing and buying opportunities, but also as a place where the world moved a little slower; a place of warmth and camaraderie, where you could lose yourself for an hour or two in the strange and predominantly male world of record collecting.
Additional note; January 2012: Bill Forsyth reopened Minus Zero Records, nearby, in the Red Lion Arcade. It was open from July 2010 to September 2011 before he closed permanently and has now left London.