"30 years since if first opened it's doors, Rough Trade is still enjoying its reign as the best independent record store in Britain, if not the world" - The Guardian

"We need people who truly love and believe in new music, in good new music, at the very forefront of selling it. Rough Trade Shop's are as good as it gets and their launching of a digital store brings real independent retail heritage into the digital landscape. I say bring it on!"

- Lawrence Bell, Domino

"The arrival of Rough Trade Digital is a major step forward for the digital music sector. When you have one of the world's best record stores faithfully translated into digital, everyone benefits, from labels like ourselves, to the artists and foremost the digital customer."

- Richard Russell, XL

The Mecca that is the legendary Rough Trade Shop celebrates its 30th anniversary this year and to mark the occasion the UK's finest record shop will be launching the Rough Trade Digital store for music lovers worldwide.

Rough Trade Digital will be providing a whole spectrum of MP3's which will make popping online feel like a trip down Talbot Road or a saunter into Convent Garden. You still know that you're still going to benefit from the staffs excellent product knowledge and get an authentic record shopping extravaganza but at a click of a mouse

Step inside and you'll not only be able to browse through the digital racks and listen to some weird and wonderful tunes from an extensive range of quality back catalogue but also access loads of new releases.

The selection of MP3's will constantly change to keep even the most avid music fan on his/her toes. Insatiable music fans will be able to discover much more music and more often

Rough Trade Shop staff will be on hand to dish out top tips on a variety of new releases and help customers discover new exciting bands in the same way that they do from behind the till.

Another feature of the site will be a counter-to-digital service for unsigned bands wishing to sell their music digitally. Bands who want to get their music out there can bring in a CDR to one of Rough Trade's shops in London, then they can sell it on the website complete with Rough Trade's potential endorsement. You never know who's out there in cyberspace, bands could reach a whole new audience or even several record companies!

Crucially Rough Trade's Digital store is free from Digital Rights Management (DRM) which is completely unlike other major existing download sites, and is also a point Rough Trade strongly believe respects the interest of their customers.

They'd like to allow everyone the freedom to use the downloads from the site in whichever way people see fit: be it to listen to on a laptop, burn to CD or export to an MP3 player.

Rough Trade Shops believe in according their customers the same ownership rights as if you'd bought a much-treasured limited 7" or a brand new CD from one of their London shops.

Every ardent music fan knows that Rough Trade Shops have been consistently supplying generations of customers with fantastic music on ever-changing formats and has quite rightly established itself as the place for finding out what's great about music, be it brand new, old, popular or just down right hard to find. These eccentric but loveable locations - in Talbot Road and Neal's Yard - have also provided a valuable resource for both bands and enthusiasts to congregate, share ideas and discover new music. People also go there as they know can rely on getting expert insider advice and information from its staff. The glorious series of Rough Trade Shop compilations compiled by their staff are just one way of making Rough Trade Shops' name synonymous with in-depth, trusted musical knowledge - check out any of the liner notes on each comp once you get behind the stupendously good tracklistings. Or as you pass through Neal's Yard one day, you might discover a new band to fall wildly in love with playing there as part of one of the hundreds of in-store gigs they have in the intimate surroundings of the Covent Garden shop. Very soon we're going to see Rough Trade Shops' transferring all it's charms and expertise that we know and love into the Rough Trade Digital store and in doing so hurtling headfirst into the 21st century music market.

In fact this milestone is almost upon us, with the launch of the digital service being set for midday GMT on the 14th November, 2006.

Set your watches.

Rough Trade -