When you think of indie-rock and the Australian music business over the last 20 years you’d be hard-pressed not to think of Spunk Records. the label that came out of a fanzine and fledgling touring company has become the stuff of legend. Bron chats to its founder and one of the nicest guys in the business, Aaron Curnow, to talk iconic releases – Built To Spill, Sleater-Kinney, Mogwai, Belle And Sebastian, Arcade Fire, Sufjan Stevens, The Middle East and Joanna Newsom among them – the ones that got away, and just what made one legendary indie-rock frontman end up in a fight seconds before hitting the stage.
In the first episode of the new series of Label Mates, Bron looks at one of Australia’s most iconic indie labels and speaks to the man behind its severed bovine logo, Nic Dalton of Half A Cow records. From a bookstore in Sydney’s inner-city suburb of Glebe to stages across the world with the Lemonheads, Dalton has around 180 releases under his belt including his own work with bands Sneeze, his Gloomchasers, Chewee, Godstar, Love Positions and more. He talks about 25 years with Half A Cow, its unique challenges and, of course, just where the famous cartoon motif came from.
From a childhood bedroom in Glasgow to a fully fledged label nurturing local talent and with releases spanning the US, Japan and the UK, Rock Action Records is an enduring voice in the independent music scene - much like its founders, Mogwai. Bron looks at a label that refuses to be typecast, featuring the likes of Swervedriver, Envy, Errors, Part Chimp, Torche and more.
This week we run through the incredible Rubber Records out of Melbourne, Australia. Icecream Hands, Even, Cordrazine, Ricaine and so many more bands who have helped steer not only Rubber Records but also the OZ indie scene.
1998 saw the creation of Seattle label BARSUK and they have developed a sound unique of the label as well as the north-west of the USA. Bronwyn deconstructs the artists and hand selects the best parts of this incredible record company
Conor Oberst is name well known in music circles, but its interesting to note his brother, Justin, is one of the brains behind the record label Saddle Creek. Also the home of legends Cursive, Tokyo Police Club and Son, Ambulance amongst others, you can't go wrong with this week's episode! Saddle Creek Records continues to be the flagship label of a style of music called "The Omaha Sound", characterised by a slight country twang. This is increasingly inaccurate, though, with the rise of more electronic sounds such as those favoured by The Faint. Catch Bronwyn Thompson run through the varied styles and artists that make up this influential label.