Record Store Day 2023: dates, full vinyl release list and our top picks

Record Store Day UK 2023 Poster
(Image credit: Record Store Day)

The resurgence of vinyl sales since a low point in 2013 has been great news for die-hard music lovers everywhere. Some of the credit for today’s very welcome (and impressively persistent) ‘vinyl revival’, as it’s been coined, must go to initiatives such as Record Store Day, an annual celebration that champions vinyl, and all those who sell, collect and enthuse about the once-endangered format.

In the organisation’s own words, Record Store Day (RSD) is “a day for the people who make up the world of the independent record store – the staff, the customers and the artists – to come together and celebrate the unique culture of a record store and the special role these independently owned stores play in their communities.” Now isn’t that wonderful?

Record Store Day is a global event, too, bringing together those vinyl and music lovers from all over the world. So how does it do that exactly? Well, through record store events and the release of new records. Below we have provided the lowdown on Record Store Day – what it entails, this year’s dates (spoiler alert: it’s this weekend) and how you can get involved.

According to Record Store Day's own website, the event marks “the one day of the year when over 260 independent record shops all across the UK come together to celebrate their unique culture”. With worldwide vinyl sales now looking stronger than ever and 2023’s event promising dozens of exclusive vinyl records released specifically for the occasion, there’s certainly a lot to celebrate.

What is Record Store Day 2023?

Record Store Day officially launched on 29th April 2008, with the concept conceived the previous year at a meeting of independent record store owners who looked to raise awareness for the hundreds of distributors dotted across the US and further afield. 

The day itself sees record shops around the globe sell the exclusive batch of vinyl albums released especially for the event, with many limited in number and going on sale on that day. More on those special releases below. 

Many bricks-and-mortar stores also host events and sales in conjunction with the celebratory event, too, such as Rough Trade hosting special live music performances or This Is Soho handing out merchandise, advice and even some sneaky cans of beer for those who patronised its four London stores in 2022.

Like many special so-called “days”, though, the initiative goes far beyond a solitary date in the musical calendar. Just as charities such as Red Nose Day work far beyond their annual telethons, Record Store Day is a fully-fledged organisation that, in its own words, “works with independent and major labels throughout the year to create contests, special releases and promotions”.

Record Store Day 2023

(Image credit: Record Store Day)

Record Store Day dates: when is RSD 2023?

True to tradition, Record Store Day has kept its April placeholder in the calendar over the past 15 years. While it was interrupted by the global pandemic in 2020 and 2021, when it was pushed back to later in the year and split into two events (or ‘drops’, as they were called), last year saw it return to its regular April spot, business as usual.

This year’s event is scheduled for Saturday 22nd April 2023. That's tomorrow, so get queueing... 

The best Record Store Day 2023 releases

Record Store Day

(Image credit: Record Store Day)

The full list of Record Store Day 2023 releases can be found below, but once again we couldn’t help ourselves – in true What Hi-Fi? tradition, we’ve sat down to collaboratively compile the releases we are most excited about seeing, and hopefully hearing. 

You can see our curation of team What Hi-Fi?'s 15 best RSD 2023 releases, which includes special vinyl pressings of live albums by Stevie Nicks and Midlake, limited-edition Thin Lizzy and Pixies releases, and even songs from Bluey.

Read our picks of the 15 best Record Store Day releases 2023 – Pixies, T. Rex, The 1975 and more

And the entire Record Store Day release list is as follows:

1975, The – Live With The BBC Philharmonic Orchestra: 2LP

1975, The – Live With The BBC Philharmonic Orchestra: CD

1975, The – Live With The BBC Philharmonic Orchestra: 1Cassette

A Flock Of Seagulls – B-Sides & Rarities: LP

A Place To Bury Strangers – See Through You: Rerealized: 2LP

Acid Mothers Temple – Paralyzed Brain: 12″

Adicts, The – Fifth Overture: LP

Looking forward to Record Store Day? So are we...

Now living on the other side of the world in Melbourne, Australia, our managing editor Becky Roberts is more excited about RSD 2023 than ever before. Why? The reasons for this are pretty simple: it's been four years since she properly enjoyed the one-day-the-day in-store crate digging, the quality of releases this year, the health of vinyl and the quality of today's turntables' performance.

Read more: Why I'm looking forward to Record Store Day more than usual this year

Our guides to getting the best from your new records

Rega Planar 2

(Image credit: Rega)

You've bought your coveted new RSD 2023 releases. Now what? You've got to play them, of course! Whether you've already got a trusty turntable or are looking for a brand new record player to spin your newly bought vinyl on, we're here to help.

Below you'll find guides to the best turntables on the market (for every budget and every need), as well as tips on how to set it up and get it sounding its very best. Your reading guide is below:

Harry McKerrell
Staff writer

Harry McKerrell is a staff writer at What Hi-Fi?. He studied law and history at university before working as a freelance journalist covering TV and gaming for numerous platforms both online and in print. When not at work he can be found playing hockey, practising the piano or forcing himself to go long-distance running.

With contributions from