Monday, May 20, 2013

"Brick And Mortar And Love" DVD (director: Scott Shuffitt)

This feature-length documentary examines the legendary Louisville, Kentucky indie record shop (and sometime-music venue), Ear X-Tacy, and holds a special place to me, as well as anyone who recalls the shop's heyday. Featuring interviews with owner John Timmons, plus other employees, customers, and other indie record shop owners, "Brick And Mortar Love" is a kind of love letter to the now-closed hub of Midwestern indie culture.

The shop's struggle to stay profitable is profiled here, and director Shuffitt follows the store from it's heyday to the final day. His "there on the scene" camerawork is a definitive document of the store and what it meant to local business and the scene itself. Changes in the industry, and the emergence of big-box retailers and online sales, despite a massive public outcry and support from Louisville local artists, weren't enough to save one of America's best-loved and best-known indie record stores. "Brick And Mortar And Love" is a moving testament to what we have now lost.

As a one-time Louisvillian, I spent considerable time in Ear X-Tacy, and purchased a number of items there (I recall picking up Throbbing Gristle's "Part Two - The Endless Not" there, among others). This film touches home, and is quite recommended for anyone who has pleasant memories of this piece of Louisville history. 

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