"Buying a physical CD also requires putting on pants then driving to a Westfield somewhere and flicking through the shelves hoping to find the one you are after"
You what? Did Westfield exist in the 80s?
If you want a specific one then you punch the name into google and then you will end up on a retailer site that probably has your card details saved.
Otherwise, I tend to serendipitously pick them up. Most are used and cost 50p.
I know that some people just going onto things called "newsgroups" where there isn't much news but you can take plenty of "FLAC".