This is as much a record store for me, as it is a resource and fountain of knowledge. Sure, you could walk into (the now-defunct) Tower Records across the street and find what you think you're looking for—but walk into Other Music and you will hear something you never knew existed playing over the speakers. Their weekly newsletters are graduate courses in music, from German minimal house to American folk, French pop to North Korean funk. What if reading about music is about as effective as looking at food for ya? Then go to one of their in-store concerts. One night I bask in the subtle ambient styling of Colette, a young French musician with an amped-up cello and a string of chimes. The next night I brace myself for the aural onslaught of Boris, one in a storied line of Japanese noise bands with gut-shaking bass lines and visceral drums.