A month before Ruland opened Spoonful, Jake Derouen and Kate Sykes transported their vast vinyl collection to a tiny second-floor space on High Street in Clintonville. The back rooms would function as their apartment; the front would be Dreadful Sounds, a record store catering to fans of punk, metal and hardcore.

A month before Ruland opened Spoonful, Jake Derouen and Kate Sykes transported their vast vinyl collection to a tiny second-floor space on High Street in Clintonville. The back rooms would function as their apartment; the front would be Dreadful Sounds, a record store catering to fans of punk, metal and hardcore.

Derouen, better known by his nickname, Laser, has long been a fixture of the hardcore scene as guitarist for heavy hitters like Nukkehammer and Killed In Action. He became an avid record collector upon moving to Columbus from Baton Rouge in 1998. Half a decade ago he had to pass on an offer to buy now-defunct record store Sound on Sound, but in the ensuing years the thought of throwing himself completely into vinyl became increasingly appealing.

"I just ended up quitting my job, and was like, you know what? I'm done. I'm going to start working on getting a collection together to open a store," said Derouen, 34. "For the last almost four years or so I was unemployed and just buying and flipping records. I'd buy a bunch of them from someone and then sell a few off on eBay or whatever and then take whatever money I made and go buy more."

By this year, Derouen had compiled an awe-inspiring collection of "extreme" records and was ready to offer likeminded listeners a place where they didn't have to dig through 300 classic rock discs to find a Christian Mistress LP.

Derouen's reputation helped Dreadful Sounds attract an instant clientele. His specialized supply of records kept them coming back. Although he said he's hardly making a killing, "We have paid our rent and bills with sales since day one. Word of mouth has taken care of us completely."

More than any of the other new Columbus shops, Dreadful Sounds is filling a niche; "Columbus needed this," is a common chorus among his customers. Despite a vibrant network of bands and fans, there was no comparable clearinghouse for music so heavy and obscure.

"That's my market," Derouen said. "I'm working on cornering it."