12 Tónar record shop and label, Reykjavik

November 3, 2016

Superb music and coffee come together at this hub of creativity in Iceland’s capital – Björk’s a fan – and Monocled Man’s founder is suitably impressed

The streets of downtown Reykjavik peel away from the stunning Hallgrímskirkja church and, on one of them, at Skólavörðustíg 15, is an innocuous shop frontage – 12 Tónar. Sitting centrally in the Venn diagram of necessities for many young(ish) urbanites, this store has the best of Icelandic music – and coffee.

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It sounds like a utopian Scandi cliché. Genial audiophiles-cum-baristas advocate the wonder of vinyl and blended roasts, while Icelanders deliver niche music recommendations with impeccable accents and grammar in their second language. Both the staff and customers of 12 Tónar are effortlessly dressed, cultured and articulate.

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