RIP: Catapult 100% Vinyl, Cardiff’s only independent dance music record store

catapult

The death of the independent record store has unfortunately been a trope of the changing high street over the past 20 odd years. And it was with a heavy heart that I learned, just after the new year, of the closing of Catapult 100 % Vinyl, which had been Cardiff’s only independent dance music specialist for some years.

There’s an open Facebook group that’s been set up where people who loved the shop (and spent a lot of time there over the years) are encouraged to share photos, videos, and memories of the place. If it was a place you loved, please join (or leave comments beneath this blogpost): RIP Catapult Facebook group.

When I moved back to Cardiff for university in 2000, I went out wandering through the city centre looking for a part time job to support me through my studies. I ended up getting a job in Catapult and spending all my wages on music: vinyl, CDs, whatever. And it was the best investment I ever made.

I had some good times in that shop. Made some great friends there. And bought amazing music there.

I’ll truly miss it, and what it signified for dance music culture in Cardiff. Is this the end of drum and bass in the capital?

We had a couple of photo shoots in and around the shop, during the life of this blog. Here’s Adam Corner, who used to work there, and his We Are Cardiff story about Cardiff’s nightlife

The shop has its fair share of successful alumni too – people who’ve worked there have gone to start record labels, work at 1Xtra and Radio 1, DJ at festivals all over the world, and even top the charts. Below is a short film I put together about Lincoln (aka High Contrast), who I used to work with at the shop a decade ago (argh!), and the album launch party he had with Hospital Records in the store.

I’ve been meaning to do a proper post about Catapult since I started this blog. Guess it just goes to show you can’t wait forever on things you want to do, because life doesn’t wait.

The shop was a massive part of my younger days in Cardiff, as I know it was for so many others. And I’ll really miss it. RIP Catapult Records.

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8 responses to “RIP: Catapult 100% Vinyl, Cardiff’s only independent dance music record store

  1. nice write up but very sad that this record store had to close. i am visiting cardiff in may this year and also want to check out the record stores there. are there any alternatives considering dance music?

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    • Spillers Records sells dance music too, but is more of an all rounder in terms of the music it covers (they sell pretty much everything there!). Definitely go visit that. Also there’s Kelly’s Records in the indoor market, and D’Vinyl in Roath. But no other dance music specialists. Very sad for Cardiff 😦

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  2. Hey, I’m from Media Wales and I’m writing a story about the closure of Catapult. I was wondering if you had taken / owned the pictures on here and if so, could I have permission to use it with my article please? I would also like to speak to you to include your feelings about the closure in my article. My email is rozina.sabur@mediawales.co.uk Thanks, Rozina.

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  3. Such a shame that Catapult has closed. Fond memories of the store and also others such as Whoosh. I guess Catapult’s closure is down to the changing nature of high street retail and the music industry specifically.
    I recall the shop’s earlier name was ‘Catapult 100% Vinyl’ but sadly the current ‘vinyl revival’ probably couldn’t save Catapult. The format, kept going for many years by dance and black music, is for technological reasons no longer the preferred choice of club DJs. Instead vinyl is now bought by collectors or those who buy for home listening from the indie and rock markets.
    Anyway its good that someone has paid tribute to what was a very special part of Cardiff’s music scene and should at least be recognised as the ‘last man standing’ from Cardiff’s dance music specialists. Big up the Catapult crew.

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