"The bottom line is that there is no real future for physical retail in the music sector."
Retail analyst Neil Saunders reacts to the news that HMV are the latest high-street company to call in the administrators. Might I venture to suggest that this flies in the face of the evidence provided by the likes of Spillers Records in Cardiff, Piccadilly Records in Manchester, Truck Store here in Oxford and Sound It Out in Stockton? What is obsolete is HMV's particular variant of this model: surly couldn't-care-less staff, stock levels at the mercy of record company whims and a pronounced emphasis on DVDs over music. What isn't obsolete is the polar opposite: small, independent shops run by fiercely passionate music aficionados who delight in giving personal service and creating a hub for a local music community.