Oh boy. The new Rough Trade store (inside the Old Truman Brewery, just off Brick Lane) is the bomb. Seriously. Lots of space, great music selection (with a slant towards post-punk, but also lots of stuff between German minimal, Independent Hip Hop, Americana, ...). Most artefacts decorated with brief one-sentence descriptions. Great personnel. An entrance area with lots of seats, a bar for coffee, drinks and snacks. Open wifi, which I used to rip the CDs I just bought so I could listen to them on my way with all metadata in place.
Beautiful interior, somewhere between bleak Berlinian Hard Wax factory floor aesthetic, slaughterhouse neon lights reminiscent of Munich's Ultraschall, and a Starbucks-esque level of professionalism without the soulless corporate mentality that usually accompanies it.
And they seem to be very successful -- lots of people browsing and buying. I guess it helps that they're pretty much the only record store of this sort in East London...
Was here yesterday for the first time, bought a CD and ordered two; came back again today and bought two more.
I defy you to browse around and not buy anything.