Tuesday, December 30, 2008

David Vincent's Bullet Belt.

Question: Dig, simple question, I just would like to know why you gave David Vincent a bullet belt when he signed with you in 1989. He recently was arrested for having the belt in Italy, have you read? From:

Answer: Yeah I read that story too...its crazy what you have to do at airports these days.Post 9/11 the list of things you cant take on a plane is huge now, and really annoying- no liquids at all, not even water, no razor blades, no scissors, and certainly no bullet belts.Fair play to David for sticking to his Metal fashion credentials, but I guess he forgot how officious the airport security folks can be these days, especially in Europe.
Modern Irish thrashers Gama Bomb wear bullet belts all the time, and even have a song named in honor to the metalhead's favourite accessory, but they too have abandoned travelling with them now - Bullet Belts cause too much hassle at security borders/airports/ferry ports etc to be worth the effort.I guess the peabrained security assume cos you have some bullets around your waist, you also have a gun too! Dimwits!

To answer your question, yeah, back in the late 80s when I signed Morbid Angel, my label was hardly anything, it had barely released 6 or 7 titles in the UK, and though the early bands like Napalm Death & Carcass were appreciated in the Hc/metal underground, Earache had little distribution outside UK.
At the same time, Morbid Angel were a talented young death metal band based out of Tampa, in Florida.The band had a well-received demo tape which was a must-have on the underground metal tape-traders circuit (much like Mp3 download/swapping now) but no actual album out, which was odd given their underground hero status.Turns out they were being picky about which label they would sign too, having turned down several offers before mine.It was a breakthrough moment when Morbid Angel agreed to sign for the first time to Earache- (they subsequently signed/extended 2 more times during the 90's), it set the label on course to become pretty established, and within 4 years of signing to Earache, Morbid Angel themselves became the first death metal act to ink a major label record deal- with Giant/Warners.

Of course none of us knew this would happen at the time,so in hindsight, when I flew over to Tampa in 89 to meet the band and oversee the recording of the debut album - my first time ever on a plane actually-it was an auspicious meeting of similar 'extreme minds'.I remember Trey's mind was blown when I showed him the Carcass debut LP- he was fascinated and impressed that a label could have the balls to release an LP with such extremely gory artwork-he told me he liked how Earache would not attempt to censor or tone down his art, because Morbid Angel's music and satanic lyrical stance was considered highly 'out there' by other, more established labels of the period ,like NYC's Combat Records, the label which did Death's late 80s LPs for instance.

One thing I noticed about the band was how dedicated they were- living together in a tumbledown house which they shared with a few early fans, the band were dirt-poor, any money they had went into better and more equipment, nothing else mattered 'cept the band, and the punishing rehearsal schedule they went through in the basement of that house- 5-6-7 hours solid, on a daily basis - meant that when I saw them play in rehearsal they absolutely floored me.By contrast a UK band like Napalm Death would barely rehearse maybe 1 time a week, or just whenever a big gig was coming up, this was for logistical reasons, because the ND members lived in different cities- Birmingham, Coventry, Liverpool etc.Morbid Angel were on a whole completely different level.
Spending time in Tampa meant I got to meet Frank at Aces Records - a market stall- which was the only place where underground metal was sold, we struck up a deal so Earache releases would be on sale aswell- Ace's was probably the first store in USA to stock them.At some point I guess David had shown interest in a bullet belt, which were highly prized by metalheads but impossible to get hold of in Tampa, dont forget this was at a time before punk/metal stores sprung up to sell accessories to the masses, as the scene was highly underground at that point, you made your own fashion.So as a signing gift I gave David a bullet belt, it might well have been my own, but i dont recall. Good of him to remember all these years later!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Effect of High Street records shops demise?

Question: Hi, with the demise of the local record shop, and slowly the highstreet stockist (woolworths, Zavi, MVC etc)has Earache suffered with respect to attracting fans to new releases? or has the popularity of Myspace etc compensated? Also what percentage of Earache sales do CDs and downloads make up? thanks From: gethindavies05@aol.com

Answer: Yes, its a time-bomb to all labels - as more record stores go to the wall in the current situation, its not good news for us.Without the High street outlets stocking the Cds, many artists lose their retail visiblity, so fans who like to browse in store are forced to dig deeper - often to specialist record shops or via online - to get their metal, and many fans simply arent accustomed to shopping that way, yet.

Woolworths was mainly stocking Top 40 so that doesnt affect too many Indie metal labels, but Zavvi on the other hand had a massive metal section and used to support the metal labels a LOT, advertising big titles in the metal magazines, so with their demise it only leaves HMV still operating as a UK high street operation selling metal Cds.
Its a strange anomaly that anyone can see that music is immensely popular with fans- every kid you meet has ipod ear buds in, and the world is enjoying music more than ever, BUT not via those shiny round silver discs, which are showing their age, technologically, Mp3 music files are the format of choice, soon to be music streams infact.

A Knock on effect of the chain stores closing down, hardly mentioned in the national media, is the folding of Pinnacle distribution, which closed its doors a few days before Xmas.Pinnacle was a famous UK distributor of indie labels, of 2 decades standing, and naturally carrying some big metal companies, many of which won't be paid for their sales now.Some of the labels have lost all their sales income for last 3 months, and even for the most hardy of record companies, its a hammer blow some wont recover from.

Cds still make up 85% of Earache's sales so its a worrying situation, paid-for downloads and other digital income (ringtones) is growing extremely fast, and major corporations are now paying for use of music- the popularity of the new Nokia 'Comes with Music' mobile phone and advertising revenue from the billions of streamed music tracks from Myspace.com and youtube.com are soon to be shared with the labels (well the ones who sign up to the deals offered), this is big news, but its not yet enough income to replace Cds. Many labels including Earache are diversifying into T-shirt merchandising and licensing music to Video games or movies, some are trying to get a small slice of the live income of its artists aswell.
In the long run, the signs are that paid-for digital music income will actually become the music labels saviour.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

The MDP - Alaskan Industrial metal

Question: Sup Dig! Seasons greetings and everything you\'re probably tired of hearing about by now. It\'s been officially a year since I started asking you blog questions on industrial and how to progress as an artist. You\'re fucking awesome dude.

Quick recap: Made a demo, got big on the internet, wanted to know how transition this from bedroom hobby to a possible career. Asked your opinions on the genre, had a nice chat with Al (gave me an address to send stuff in the future), and you tracked down my myspace and said it was \"pretty decent industrial\". Now on to the current:

I\'m not going to make any progress unless I get off my ass and get out and about. I played a few shows this last summer for the first time, and they\'ve gone pretty well. My last gig was at the request of Kynt and Vyxsin (goth TV celebs, check YouTube) when they came here to visit, since Kynt was a fan from my internet success. They put me in touch with the event holders here that run the big events here in state who are dying to get me around, which brings me to my conundrum:

The event folks here love me, maybe because I\'m the only industrial act here trying (or because I only ask for burgers as payment), but they want \"my band\" to play all over state and at thier events starting January, and they\'re even dangling traveling to Seattle to play there over my head. The thing is, the \"events\" here are all electronic/techno/rave-oriented ones as are their connections in the lower 48. I\'m DYING to get out of Alaska, I can\'t take this Russia-Canada sandwich anymore. I don\'t mind the rave atmosphere now, but my fear is if I start doing this whole \"rave techno\" scene stuff for the next 6 months to a year, is that the scene I\'ll be pigeon-holed in to event holders? I\'m worried that even with this experience under my belt, if I try and get involved with rock/metal promoters, they\'ll go \"we don\'t do techno\" which is what all the venues around here said when I tried to get traditional gigs. But this is a fucking-hick state, so my perception may be scewed. Does shit even work that way, or am I over-thinking this too much?

By the time I fly the fuck out of here, I\'ll have an CD of \"great\" songs as opposed to \"pretty decent\" (the stuff on my myspace) that I plan on sending to Al. There\'s a few specific artists in your roster I hold in the highest regard I\'d kill to hear feedback from. Maybe if the material doesn\'t suck that can happen :)

Answer:Simple answer is play anywhere anytime- so many other things spin off from shows, not just the playing on stage part, but simply being visible and networking at events gets you connected to the scene faster than anything.Also blog and tweet your thoughts to the world incessantly, 24-7, and keep your myspace fans updated at least daily with the latest info. Its basic promotion activity all new bands need to undertake.
I visited the myspace again and noticed your cover of Haddaway's early 90's pop-techno hit is the big draw- thats cool, you already figured out A COVER is the simplest and tried and tested way to get heard above the noise, so I reckon you should immediately do a remix of Katy Perry I Kissed a Girl- stick it on MS & YouTube, it'd be huge and make your name. Like this attempt, which has racked up 3 Million plays.. but you'd do it waay better i expect:

To be totally bleeding edge, make sure you put a "donking" techno beat on it, like this beat from UK's Blackout Crew who represent whats mass- appealing to the UK dancefloor pop-rave hordes right now:

Those 2 LA Djs seem like great allies for you, seems a great connection to have- so keep it going..As for rave vs industrial debate..if Rave events are the ones calling, then you certainly are a rave act- you should deal with the prejudices of the industrial rock fraternity later, when you have a full band backing you up onstage.

Y'know this post really makes me wanna hear Ultraviolence track "Strangled" again- this dark, angry, metallic,hi tempo industrialised rave style song from 98 was astonishingly unique for the time, and still sounds totally 'out-there' ten years on- taken from the Killing God album, on Earache:

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Confessor & re-isue artwork

Question: Hi Dig,
Was just wondering was Mosh 44 \'Condemned\' ever reissued, or just the initial pressing? I managed to win myself a mint/unplayed cd copy on ebay recently!! While on the subject of re-issues, why is it that some of the earlier stuff (like Entombed\'s \'Clandestine\' appear to have inferior quality sleeve artwork to the original pressings? The Godflesh \'crumbling flesh\' website says a similar thing about the \'Streetcleaner\' sleeve artwork.
Cheers and keep up the good work
Regards Craig From:

Answer: Confessor has never been re-issued by us since the actual 1991 release so its an original you have there.The band were criminally under-appreciated when we did them because the label was mostly doing extreme death metal and grind, so fans ignored them even tho we thought they were killer.
As for the artwork, in many cases it does cause us immense problems when we re-issue early 90's albums because sourcing the original art is hard, the art back then was pre computer, it was all designed by hand, using paste-up and transfered to film for printing the covers by photographic means.Now a decade and a half later, when we come to re-issue an album, while we have a library of archived art in the office, for some titles its not always possible to source the original art, so we use hi res digital scanners to scan in the cover, which is only as good as the printing at the time.Paradoxically the resolution of the film used on the originals is greater than the resolution of digital scanners today, meaning on some occasions the art looks lower quality.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Landmine Marathon on Earache?

Question: is there any reason why earache isnt working with landmine marathon? im wondering because its one of those bands that on paper you should be considering their influences appear to be a whos who of earache bands.

Answer: In short, not just yet.We are following the band's progress, from afar, just like we do with a zillion other promising acts.Its a shame i havent seen em live- they gotta tour UK for that to happen, as my trips to USA lately are few and far between.
After an amazing write-up on my favourite music blog INVISIBLE ORANGES we checked out the myspace and its pretty cool to see them praising the old Earache grind/death metal stuff from the past.We're chuffed with that!
The band also appear in the latest REVOLVER mag aswell, and vokillist Grace posts a highly entertaining blog on Revolvers site too, which makes them stand out from other bands and shows understanding of promotion etc.All in all, yeah I take your point that they have all the ingredients to be on this label, but no offers have been made.I see they already have a label anyways and its not always cool to muscle in on bands who are already happy elsewhere.
Another reason is we are picky and downright snobbish about bands - frankly, they need to blow us away to get signed.I find this a lot with young bands who worship the old Earache style and sound, they sound eerily familiar, but much like an old school pal who you meet again aged 30 or so- they are unrecognisable.To my, admittedly shot-though ears, Landmine Marathon sound like an polite, diminished echo of the past.Grindcore is supposed to be feral, unhinged and fucking off the hook.
The only bands in America who shock me are OCEANO and INSECT WARFARE.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Cult Of Luna DVD in the works & Steve Austin's (TITD) Supernova label.

Question: This is a great section of your website, I always enjoy reading the questions/answers? I have 2 questions:

1. Are you planning to release a Cult of Luna DVD any time soon, I understand a gig in London was recorded earlier this year with the full lineup?

And (totally unrelated)

2. Have you checked out this INTERVIEW (link below) with Steve Austin of Today is the Day, where he discusses in some length his general disdain of the metal music industry? He mentions his label employs someone who used to work for Earache. Just wondered what Earache\'s opinions are of his views?




Answer: Earache will release the first Cult oF Luna DVD entitled "Fire Was Born" on March 23rd 2009.Filmed at a special one hour and a half performance at the Scala in London earlier this year on multiple Hi Def cameras, its currently being edited and having the audio mixed by Johannes Persson.In Sweden it will be released as a standalone DVD, but for everywhere else Earache intends to give it away FREE to fans who purchase a special edition of Eternal Kingdom CD.The CD/DVD edition will be priced as a regular CD so the DVD is genuinely a free bonus.

As for Steve Austins interview- wow, that was one hell of a fascinating read, because I personally know all the folks mentioned in this interview - I gave Gordon and Curran their first music industry jobs, as Earache's Press Officers in NYC, a job they both did very well.Crucially though I've never met Steve himself,our paths somehow never crossed, so I have no insights into the dude at all.First thing to notice is that the purpose of the interview was obviously to hype up his Supernova Records label (Curran will have arranged it)and to do this, Steve goes to great lengths to bash his long term ex-label Relapse.It just reads like he's out for revenge for what he percieves as a lack of support/respect for TITD by the label.
What I find most alarming of all, is his singing the praises of SONY/RED for their generous extended credit line enabling him to manufacture CDs and Lps for the label.Hang on- when did the global corporate behemoth SONY become the Indie music scene's best friend, yet a totally Independent label like Relapse which is run by 2 music fanatics become its worst enemy?Thats just wrong, and vengeful.NO label is whiter than white, because occasionally they have to act in their own self-interests to survive, especailly in tough times, and if that means telling an underperforming band they cant have what they want, the toys go out the pram on a regular basis.
Anyway, hats off to the bloke for having the courage of his convictions, and giving his label a go DIY style.I notice something like 9 out of the first 20 releases are TITD live albums, to me that looks like a vanity label right there, tho its clever to have a proven seller, to even out the risks inherent in new bands.Steve talks a lot of common sense in this, i agree with his views on Mp3s and digital music.
Sinking $150,000 of his own money into it shows real intent,and I wish him every success, but perhaps Steve has never heard that long standing music industry joke.
Q: How do you make a million dollars in the Music Industry? A: Start with 2 million.

Look- heres all you need to know about the music business: When Art meets Commerce, head-butting ensues.
All bands enter the music scene as starry eyed fans, their artistic concerns are paramount, any commercial aspects are downright boring.This is how it is.I've never yet met a new band with a business plan, thats in 20 years, and this is a good thing actually, because if such a spreadsheet-toting band existed you can bet they would be beyond terrible.
However nearly all of them - well 9 out of 10- leave the scene because of financial issues..like when they travel long drives to play to a handful of people, do that enough days and you become seriously in debt.The bottom line is- even if the music is awesome and cutting edge and praised by critics, its the fans at the end of the day who decide the fate of bands.You are the ones who buy the music,buy the T shirts, buy the gig tickets... or don't.You have the power.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

What percentage of bands fail?

Question: It says on the Documentry about bands and labels Dig! that 85-90% of records released by labels never recoup and that a label\'s fail rate is 9 out of 10 of bands that they try to break through. In your experience is this really the case with labels or is it just the case with major labels? From:

Answer: Short answer is, and it depends on your definition of making it/failure, but yeah its pretty much true, the odds of a signed band making it to a level of 'success' leading to a long term lucratve career, are 10%-15% or thereabouts.I haven't seen the behind the scenes music documentary "DIG!" but its got a great name, I'll give it that.I checked it on youtube and it seemingly came out in 2004 and followed the careers of 2 newish for the time bands trying to 'make it' during that year, The Dandy Warhols, and Brian Jonestown Massacre.
Now its 2008 almost 2009 , and you could say that since I only recognise one of the bands, the film's own success rate at picking bands, was 50%.Hmmm thats not bad.

All labels operate in the same way Major and Indie- basically we are all at the casino, betting on our bands- the budgets might differ, the majors are congregated at the High roller tables and the Indies are in the cheap seats with the slots ..still,does'nt matter who you are, or most alarmingly, even what you do, the odds are stacked 10 to 1 against a successful outcome.Statistics don't lie-the most common fate of signed bands is failure, and for each one which carves out a successful career, there are approx 9 others who get the dreaded "sorry, you're dropped" letter after an album or 2, which usually results in a flurry of recriminations and accusations of lack of support.Any label which bucks this trend, which is mostly new labels who are enjoying the success of a flurry of new bands coming from a new scene, with a string of hits, these labels are revered in the industry for a while, but over a longer time period after the first flush of their sucess has died away, they too end up at the industry average of 10% rate it seems.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Earache Going Digital & 360 degree deals?

Question: how has earache found the transition to digital music, a lot of labels seem to be going for the 360 approach. From:

Answer:Good question- there is always a lot of online buzz and chatter about this subject, and I read an interesting posting on INVISIBLE ORANGES blog recently, which summed up the current scenario very well, giving a balanced arguement and realistic suggestions for once, rather than the typical "labels = bad, free mp3s = good" stance, which sadly seems to be the consensus among the blogterati.
The internet & the digitisation of music, making it freely available to copy, has driven a huge upsurge in interest in all forms of music.Certain forms of obscure niche music which had been hitherto off the radar to most music buyers, because of lack of instore CD racking space devoted to it, those scenes are now enjoying somewhat of a boom.If you are a fan of Korean pop singers or Peruvian pan pipe/flute music, this is an amazing time for you, as you can download exactly what you want, to your hearts desire.I count Earache's extreme metal catalog as a similar type of niche which is benefitting from exposure via the internet.The hard part for serious labels which have fully staffed offices and a substantial catalogue is to actually try to make money to survive and continue to release decent music, faced with the onslaught of so called fans who seem to be settling more and more for crappy CDr burns off a mate or downlaodable files, instead of the 'real product'.

Our own artist Gama Bomb recently came out in favor and actually encouraging fans to download albums for free- they are a new band so all exposure can only be good for them, but they do admit they'd probably not say that if they were a huge selling act, and had more to personally lose than gain by encouraging it.To test their convictions, and for a laugh, I might suggest Earache gives away their next album for free via the internet, it would save us making Cds and Vinyl anyway, and because we do have a 270 deal with the band, it might actually be the smart thing to do, as we also handle the song publishing and merchandising for the band and receive a small slice of that income aswell, it makes it economically sensible at least.
360 is shorthand for when a label has a stake in and a slice of the income from all possible sources, usually meaning 1) recording,2) song publishing, 3) merchandising and sometimes 4)gig performance fee income aswell.Earache's deals might be accurately termed 270 deals.

The inside scoop is that labels are starting to do very well from digital music,the legal download services, iTunes being the biggest, suprisingly do now actually pay substantial sums to labels, including Earache.I guess all those hundreds of millions of folks who got ipods sooner of later discovered the itunes store itself and now the novelty of ripping cds into it has worn off, they absolutely dont mind now shelling out 99c for a track, knowing its decent quality, no DRM, highly convenient and legal.

Our problem at Earache nowadays is dealing with the multitude of legal download platforms which are follwing in iTunes footsteps, and seem to spring up from nowhere, and all want to include our catalog on their site.We must get one per day who assume that Earache is desperate to launch on their unproven website and will pay for the previlege of being represented there.Its fair to say we dont see eye to eye with these upstart tech guys, just because they developed some nifty sofware that streams and sells mp3s they reckon they're doing us a favor by even offering their services,but we do try to co-operate with them as best we can because we know its the future.
The culture of the upstart,high tech, very fast moving software industry is so alien to the culture of the more measured, long term copyright holding, music industry folks that its a wonder any deals get done at all.This failure of either side to accomodate the other back during the infancy of the net in mid-late 90s is the major reason that legal digital music was so long in coming, leaving the way wide open for the illegal sites like the famous trailblazing Napster, then the later sites likes of Kazzaa/Limewire/Soulseek and other newer p2p torrent sites to claim the territory, and victory.

Realising their mistakes,most of the major labels hired technology experts - EMI hired an ex-Google tech guy for instance- specifically so they can form a closer understanding with the technology companies.Myspace Music also launched in September 2008, which promised to pay the labels for the millions of free streamed songs on which the brand built its fame from 2004 onwards.Sadly the deal to pay for music included only the 4 Majors, and excluded the Indie labels,which was a shock, but that is hopefully being rectified soon we think.
Most of the big online companies making up many of the largest companies in the world have recently concluded deals to pay labels for the use of their music -Google/Amazon/Microsoft/Nokia etc.The explosion in music based video games- Guitar Hero/ Rockband where we have several acts appearing, has undoubtedly helped too.
Shockwaves went around the industry when major label Atlantic Records recently announced 54% of their turnover was derived from digital music, this was amazing, because even as recently as 2006, this figure was commonly around 10%.
All in all- the future for legal digital music is rosier than many pundits think, far from being the death knell for the recording industry, its proving to be a great opportunity for the the smarter labels, those than can manage to cross the cultural divide and embrace the tech revolution, they might yet even end up emerging stronger.
Heres the TV ad campaign which the UK DVD industry is running to dissuade people from downloading bootleg films on DVD:

Monday, December 08, 2008

Earache endorsements for extreme athletes?

Question: Has earache ever considered getting involved in other aspects of counter culture as far as sponsership and endorsements. The best example of another label doing this is deathwish inc sponsering ufc fighers which obvously gets the label name out to a much wider audience. Since earache takes its font from thrasher magazine how about endorsing skaters etc? From:

Answer: It's rare we endorse athletes/sports because its gotta be totally hog-wild and super-extreme for us to take any interest.Earache does get floods of offers all the time to sponsor this skater or endorse that sport, but its fairly tame stuff. Anyway, quite a few of the people in the skateboard industry are our friends- we often give those companies music to use in their DVDs, but never got round to endorsing a skater for some reason.
Years ago I was a huge fan of bareknuckle backyard brawler KIMBO SLICE (see pic above) and we deserately wanted to work with endorsing him, but no luck, he's now a major upcoming draw on ELITE XC.
Heres Kimbo in action:

In the mid-late 90s Earache was one of the first people to pick up on and we did endorse the newly formed Freestyle Motocross team METAL MULITIA
heres a clip of the king of freestyle motocross :

Somthing we'd consider endorseing in the future might be XMA athletes- the Bo staff routine is so fast and intense to watch it freaks me out.
heres why:

Friday, December 05, 2008

Gama Bomb & Bonded BB are on Vinyl LP for Xmas

Question: hi there i was wondering how you decide which albums get a vinyl release.the reason for me asking is that vinyl is my prefered choice and would like to know why evile and sss got a vinyl release but gamma bomb violator and bonded by blood didnt also why was decapitated the negation released on vinyl and not organic hallucinos finally how rare is the green vinyl release of domination by morbid angel would i have to go to ebay to get one thanks simon From: sidav@hotmail.co.uk

Answer: Simple answer is if we are pretty sure we can sell 1000 copies on LP, then we think about printing it.It doesnt sound like a lot, but strangely its actually not always possible for us to sell that amount, for proof, I simply have walk 10 metres and look at the hundreds of unsold EVILE double gatefold 2 x 12inch Black vinyl LPs sitting on our stock storeroom shelf.This is probably the fastest rising Thrash band in UK, and I have unsold vinyl.Anybody want some?

What fans often don't realise is the huge costs involved in making a vinyl LP - the process is so archaic and time consuming,involving dipping the master into vats of steaming hot silver liquid, its positively medieval and wasteful, hence is 10x the cost to making Cds. Its this outrageous cost difference and general lack of interest in the format which prevents us making more vinyl. The good news you want to hear is that yes, Gama Bomb and Bonded By Blood will be available on LP from our webstores soon for sale, hopefully by xmas, and in limited edition colours- out of 1000 made I think 100 are on clear wax, 150 red 250 orange and 500 black.They are made in USA,we dont have them on store yet- so watch out for them.
To be honest we have this discussion- more like heated disagreements, actually- a lot in the earache offices, I can't stand vinyl, cos personally I have not played a vinyl LP for maybe 10 years, I dont even own a vinyl player, or 'record player' as the dratted wind-up belt-driven contraptions were commonly know as.Dan the Uk label manager on the other hand is a Vinyl NUT, and fights the analogue corner hard, insisting on LP releases wherever possible- so you can thank him for your collection, cos if i had my way, ALL vinyl would be banished for ever!! Mwahahaaa!!
But even I can see that the interest in the LP format is booming nowadays- questions I get asked on a daily basis on this very blog the most are like " how many copies were made of blah blah vinyl and err whats it worth?" Ive hate answereing such questions because i'm not a pricing service for ebay sellers. The easiest way is to check our EARACHE COMPLETE CATALOG page- click on the album title to see an informative list with photos of the special editions made back in the 90s.
As for Decapitated- all their albums were on vinyl, i think, but the last one,it slipped by I suppose. Green Morbid angel vinyl is original early 90s vintage so fetches top dollars on ebay.
heres a video explaining how vinyl is made:

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Earache Xmas party 2008- all welcome FREE

Question: Hi i was wondering who is playing the xmas party this year, and how do i get a ticket? from: dave.horton65@hotmail.com

Answer: Yes you too can get to hang out with the Earache crew and watch some of our finest up n coming bands- with free jagermeister if the extremely generous Cellar Trends folks will sort us out this year with a case of the stuff!.4 bands are playing at Rescue Rooms, NOTTINGHAM on Thurs 18th December, its FREE to get in as usual and everyone 14+ is welcome.You don't need a ticket, just text the number on the flyer for info and turn up..SEE YOU THERE!

Were NWOBHM band HELL an influence?

Question: Was the band Hell a big influence on earache at all? As from reading interviews with them yourself, andy sneap and the guys from heresy were frequent atendees of their shows. the influence on andy is blatent but im just wondering did it have an influence on you as far as your own bands or starting the label? Also what are the odds of you ever releasing material by your own projects dig as you did mention them in the terroizer interview a few years back. From:

Answer: I'd forgotten all about the local Derby/Notts 80's NWOBHM band HELL until Andy Sneap started to sing their praises in an interview he did for Wicked World/Earache where he mentions how they were a big influence on him- I think they lived in his village, Ripley.As for me, I can't say I was a big fan, as I mostly was listening to and preferred manic Hardcore punk bands, plus the fast, punky, down n dirty early 80's UK metal acts like Motorhead, Vardis and Tank, quickly leading onto the equally speedy big 4 Thrash bands coming out of USA.Slayer is my main influence, always will be, they changed my life, quite literally, as the unspoken aim of my label's early output was to 'Out-Slayer Slayer', which is tough to do, beleive me.
Back in early 80's it was really unusual for HC and metal dues to mix, but Nottingham was luckily quite a close knit and open minded town, I do remember seeing them live,I guess the dudes from Lawnmower Deth dragged me down to see Hydra, the early incarnation of Sabbat, and I would have dragged the Heresy dudes along too.
As for my own bands- theres no need to release anything as they were just hobby, non-serious 'bands' designed to have a blast and a bit of fun, with the aim to make noize and make people think, in the early 80's.Both revelled in short fast blasts of Noize, in many ways they predated and hinted at the style Earache would release later in the decade.You can read about Genocide Association and hear a Skum Dribbluurz gig here.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Brutal Truth re-issues?

Question: OK, I\'ve asked this one a couple of times before, but to no avail..How about a reissue of the Earache-era Brutal Truth material? The ultimate would be a multi-CD box set with the \"Extreme Conditions..\", \"Perpetual Conversion\",\"Need to Control\"(with the extra tracks from the vinyl box set) and perhaps a \"rare tracks\" CD with the \"Ill Neglect\" 7\" and some early live stuff. This would definitly be a money maker given the fact that they recently reformed, and there is a buzz about the band. C\'mon, if you guys can release 5 albums by A.C., then there\'s no reason a classic band like BT should go neglected! It\'s likely a pipe-dream, but let me know the reason why you guys won\'tdo it! Please? Cheers!! From: stephenfeltner@bellsouth.net

Answer: We currently have no plans YET to re-issue any Brutal Truth albums Earache did in the early-mid 90's.Reason is- even though the band don't sell many copies anymore, the main Cds have never been out of print anyway, they are still freely available from Earache webstores.Another reason is because 2 years or so ago we made a special Extreme Conditions Cd with tons of extra rare as hell unreleased tracks as a special edition CD exclusively for sale via Disk Union in japan.
A lot of Earache's bands from the 90's are suddenly reactivating themselves after in many cases a decade or more of silence and inactivity- Carcass, Brutal truth, Massacre with Kam lee, Sleep,Morbid angel with David Vincent back, Mick Harris is looking to get a grindcore band together again, and hell, even Lawnmower Deth reformed!
So we are aware that newer fans would like to get their hands on the original albums- brought suitably up to date with remastering, bonus tracks galore, a live DVD from the era and lavish packaging.At Earache we have to find the right balance between our time and finances being spent on building our new acts careers or repackaging the past.Don't get me wrong we are incredibly proud of our past bands- many are deservedly legends in the extreme metal scene, having been its prime movers in the dim and dark pre-internet, pre email, pre mp3 early 90's- but having so many of them, we have a constant dilemma here about which bands to do, as fans ourselves i'd love nothing better than to instantly re-package our entire back catalog, but its a real labour of love and hella time consuming, and it takes the bands involvement too don't forget- a lot of our bands have moved on to other labels or migrated to completely different scenes since the 90's heyday and frankly some of them we suspect won't want to co-operate with Earache, for whatever reason.So its no easy task.
Our back catalog plans currently revolve around early Cathedral and Morbid Angel.Both bands will receive a series of lavish remasters, with accompanying documentary style DVDs (well dualdiscs) in 2009, much like our highly successful Carcass dual disc series in 2008.


Monday, December 01, 2008

Acid Reign re-issue?

Question: I heard a rumour earache have purchased the rights to re-release Acid Reign\'s fear and moshkinstien albums. As much i want it to be true i doubt it. Good idea though nudge nudge wink wink . TA keep up the good volume!!!! From: jhnstcrr@aol.com

Answer:yeah Acid Reign were actually damn great, and are an under-appreciated band fron the original UK thrash era 85-89 or so.In fact, several of the ex-members went onto record for Earache as cathedral and lawnmower deth in the 90's.BUt as for us doing a re-issue, we dont own the rights, thats MFN, and its highly unlikely they can be bothered as the label folded a few years back, i think its part of Sony/BMG now.

Godflesh- the infamous promo baseball bat?

Question: I saw a godflesh promo baseball bat come up for sale on ebay. Im wondering firstly is this a genuine promo item? also how rare/valuble are they? From:

Answer: At first I thought you were winding me up dude- a GODFLESH Baseball bat- err thats a joke, right?..but yeah you are correct- I'm flabbergasted that such an innappropriate artifact exists and is for sale.Nothing to do with Earache dude, this was made by the bands "other" label, the knobheads at UK label Music For Nations released the final Godflesh album "Hymns", and obviously thought it would be a wizzard promo idea.Actually thinking about it, its probably made by the US label which did Hymns- Koch.Baseball bats are associated with either 1) sports or 2) violence - neither of which are subjects that reflect Godflesh's music, I would have thought.The band split up during the promotion around Hymns, and MFN label folded a year or two later.Koch still exists and is a powerful major-style label, its main sellers are Rap artists and the multi- million selling japanese Pokeman cartoon tie-in Cds.