Al Serkal Avenue brings us Dubai's first independent record store!
We visited Flip Side DXB and our first impression was… ‘authentic’. The store boasts a stacked vinyl collection covering genres like Hip Hop, Reggae, Blues/Jazz, Electro/EDM and Local UAE artists. For collectors out there, there’s a special section with Rare Arabic Classics on wax, and they’re all original copies so you know what that means – no repeats! Once it’s gone, it’s gone. Aside from the vinyl selection being timely and fresh, it exhales classics from all different eras and features one of the best compilations of UAE based musicians.
The authentic “Williamsburg, Brooklyn” feel to this store is not without an edge that gives it some personality too, with the décor sporting artwork based on iconic Arab musicians, and unique store merchandise to accompany it.
"Prior to The Flipside opening, Virgin was the only place you could get records in the UAE. Our selection of music is very carefully curated & sheds light on music that isn't so mainstream" says Flip Side Founder Shadi Megallaa. "there were only a few groups of people who would sell & trade used records. That's exactly why The Flip Side had to open," he adds.
Flipside also gives local artists & musicians/DJs a place to do in-store events & also provides them with a platform to perform. The store also stocks local record labels like Ark to Ashes, Bedouin Records, Boogie Box, Volt Music & very soon Flip Side's very own label!
With the ever-growing pool of artists in the region Flip Side expects to do big things. "Theres a lot of talent out here - musicians like Abri & The Funk Radius, NOON & Laylah Kardan to name a few are great in the live music scene" says Shadi. "The same goes for electronic music and a good example is the line up at this years Mutek festival"
The UAE is not just growing upwards but outwards. What you thought might need to wait until your next travel is no longer the case - a kickass record store is now just around the corner.
About the Writer
Faariss Khalil is a British musician who currently lives in Dubai. As a former turntablist from Bristol his experience of growing up in a thriving music scene has fuelled his passion to uncover new music in the UAE. When he is not out there discovering talent Faariss enjoys listening to Dubstep, Trip Hop, Indie and Rock