Leeds has a new cafe-cum-record shop to while away the hours at as Single Shot opens on Central Road.
Coffee and music – they’re two things that Leeds does particularly well, and new indie Single Shot brings them together in perfect harmony. They’ve turned the old hairdressers shop on Central Road into a cool new record store with a cafe out back, so you can kill two birds with one stone.
It’s the culmination of a dream for owners Paul Raper and Rob Tierney who, after working together at HMV for nearly a decade, decided to jump ship, and use their passion and expertise to set out on their own. Rob told us why, “There are two things that I love in life – vinyl and coffee. I thought I’d combine the two – and Paul loves the booze, so we want to combine that into it as well. We had a similar idea, and we’ve got on well and worked well together for years – so we thought, why not? We’ve got to try it.”
They found a unit to make the dream happen, and after a few months of cutting through the red tape, finally managed to get to work on the shop in the middle of November, turning it around in super quick time. How did they do it so quick? By doing it all themselves, of course – from painting the walls to building the furniture.
You’ll find racks of records at the front of the shop, with a slew of LPs, 12”s and 7”s. For the time being, they’re only selling used vinyl, stocking everything from rock to pop, metal and hip-hop, sourcing their stock online, from private collections and even their own, with every record cleaned on a Pro-Ject vacuum record cleaner. The racks are set up in alphabetical order, with the rarest and most desirable pieces presented on the walls above – and if you do find a record you like, you can listen to it beforehand, with a Sony turntable ready and waiting.
You won’t be ripped off either – they’ve priced all the records to be affordable and accessible, so you’re not breaking the bank when you pick up your favourite LPs. They’re hoping to venture into new releases before Christmas, so by the new year, Single Shot will be the one-stop shop for all your vinyl needs.
Past the racks of records, beyond the feature wall decorated in vintage gig posters, you’ll find the counter where you can pay for your wax, or treat yourself to a coffee and a slice of cake. All their coffee beans and equipment comes from The Caffe Society – and they’re also responsible for their training, so you’re in for a mighty fine cup of coffee here. It’s part of a concerted effort to make sure that they’re sourcing the best local suppliers they can.
You can bag yourself an espresso for £1.80 and a latte, cappuccino, flat white or Americano for £2.40. They also have hot chocolate, a selection of teas and a range of cold drinks – they’re planning to add craft beers to the menu in coming weeks too. Cake-wise, they’ve worked with Brown and Blond to offer up the likes of caramel shortcake, Boston brownies, peanut butter brownies and rocky roads, however, they will mix it up every few days.
“It’s all locally sourced, from nearby suppliers,” Rob explained. “The coffee is from The Caffe Society in Sherburn-in-Elmet, who supplied the equipment and coffee, and it’s all good quality stuff. The cakes we’ve got from local suppliers who also use all fresh, locally-sourced ingredients. No mass produced factory stuff if we can avoid it.”
The local feel isn’t just in their coffee and vinyl, however. Single Shot plan to keep expanding their offering, and that includes providing a platform for other independent Leeds businesses to sell their wares. They’ve already begun, in fact, by stocking clothes by the Leeds-based Kid Slug Clothing Company, whose t-shirts and art prints are all inspired by tattoo designs, and they’re looking for photographers and artists who want to display their work too.
This is just the start for Single Shot – and the future is certainly bright. Alongside the craft beer, the art and interesting indie finds, they’re set to become an NME stockist, and they’re planning to put on live music in their downstairs space. They’ve already had pop-punk band Boston Manor in to do an acoustic set on their opening day, and it’s something they hope will become a regular feature to go alongside their coffee and records.
So why should you head down? In their own words, “If you want something different from the usual corporate coffee shops – we’re not trying to compete with anybody, we’re just doing our own thing. We sell coffee, tea and cakes, so if people want to come in, browse the vinyl, sit down and read a music magazine, while they think about what they want to buy and have a coffee while they’re doing that, they’re more than welcome”
And if that hasn’t quite twisted your arm, perhaps the fact you can get a coffee, a slice of lemon drizzle cake and a copy of Simon and Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water for less than a tenner will – absolute bargain.
Single Shot, 30 Central Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6DE.