Amoeba Music

Best Record Store, May 2004

They’ve just added a goth section at Amoeba Music, giving the best record store in Southern California a brand-new kohl-eyed pout. That’s the only gloomy note in an otherwise eerily friendly place, where the clerks never try to make you feel stupid for wanting that England Dan & John Ford Coley greatest hits album. Half the staff are DJs, the other half musicians, and all are able to supply a smirk-free answer. In its three years Amoeba has become the indisputable kingpin in town, and it’s growing in ways bigger than the goth section: The free live shows—the Eagles of Death Metal, Los Lobos, and Devendra Banhart all recently—just keep getting better. If this blob expands any further, it’ll have to take over the Cinerama Dome next door.