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Aquarius Records doc coming ft. Wayne Coyne, John Darnielle, Ty Segall & more

Aquarius Records

San Francisco independent record store Aquarius Records opened in 1970 and was known for expert curation, especially when it came to psychedelic rock, metal, and other obscure music, including local and independent artists. It was the kind of store where one could find a new favorite with each visit. They sadly closed in 2016 — Oakland’s Stranded Records took over the spot as a second location — but now the store will be immortalized with a new documentary: It Came from Aquarius Records. The documentary features interviews with Matt Groening (The Simpsons), Wayne Coyne (Flaming Lips), Bruce Ackley, John Darnielle (The Mountain Goats), Ty Segall, and Liz Harris (Grouper), and it was produced, directed, and edited by Kenneth Thomas. It’s due in summer 2020, but the director has shared the first seven minutes of the film online and you can watch it below. Here’s more info:

IT CAME FROM AQUARIUS RECORDS is a feature-length documentary about the SF-based independent record store, Aquarius Records. Having closed in 2016 after 47 years, this small apartment-sized store championed local, underground, independent, and challenging music to the masses – most memorably with their infamous bi-weekly, college essay-length, new-release lists.

This doc has interviews with the aQ owners dating back to 1970, other record store owners from around the world, musicians, label heads, music journalists, and INTENSE music collectors. Interviewees include Matt Groening (The Simpsons), Wayne Coyne (Flaming Lips), Bruce Ackley, John Darnielle (The Mountain Goats), Ty Segall, and Liz Harris (Grouper).

Aquarius Records influenced and enriched countless peoples’ musical tastes with their curated selections – but this film also shows the realities of an indie record store trying to survive in an increasingly difficult market of brick-and-mortar music shops, especially in the ever-changing and price-gouging Mission District of SF.

Six years in the making, the film has a very personal angle, with lots of behind-the-scenes footage (and drama) that shows both the joy and excruciating stress that comes with running — and closing — a store like this.

Currently in Post-Production.

Projected finish date: Summer 2020.

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