Sound It Out (4 stars)

Sound It Out

Funny and surprisingly moving documentary on Teeside record shop

The tagline for this affectionate record store documentary is ‘High Fidelity with a Northern accent’, and it is a rare case of the marketing being bang on the money. A labour of love for director Jeanie Findlay, who also produced the film and did most of the camerawork, Sound It Out is as low-budget as professional filmmaking gets, but Findlay’s passion for the subject is evident in every frame; the film resonates with the soul of a music lover.

The subject in question is Sound It Out Records, Teeside’s last surviving record shop, and something of a haven for Northern England’s record-lovers, music completists and social misfits. Through interviews with employees and customers, as well as plenty of in-store footage, Findlay builds up a picture of the community this store, and more specifically its devoted owner Tom, has cultivated and in many ways cared for for over 20 years in Stockton. It’s touching, at times very funny and also surprisingly moving. As well as crafting an insightful portrait of a specific place, Findlay effectively captures the moment of transition that record collectors worldwide are in, as the physical, tangible aspect of owning music gradually disappears. Highly recommended.

Showing at Glasgow Grosvenor on Wed 16 Nov, 6.30pm and Cameo Edinburgh on Thu 17 Nov, 9pm, with a post-screening Q & A from director/producer Jeanie Findlay at both screenings.

Watch full movie: Sound It Out

Sound It Out

  • 4 stars
  • 2011
  • UK
  • 1h 15min
  • E
  • Directed by: Jeanie Finlay
  • UK release: 4 November 2011

In the UK over the last five years, a record shop has closed down every three days. This documentary examines the very last independent record shop on Teeside.