It has long been argued that independent labels are the tastemakers. The genuine and credible face of the music industry that is seen as parasitic and treats its artists badly. Indeed, Jarvis Cocker is on record stating that he became interested in recording again following an engagement with Rough Trade after many years with major labels.
The latest such label to come out of the city is Deathly Records. Founded by Vicky Pearson, who settled in Liverpool after a stint traveling. “I was going to so many gigs in Liverpool and kept saying to friends “Why isn’t this band signed? Why isn’t someone working with this band? That song should be out there” Eventually someone said “Why don’t you do it yourself then? ”
The label also strives to be eclectic and provide a platform for a wide range of artists. “I want to be able to listen to a song a hundred times and not get bored of it” Vicky tells me “but, at the same time I like a lot of different music. Whilst I prefer to do garage rock and stuff at the end of the day if it’s good it’s good.”
Deathly’s debut release was the final part of “The Recrudescene Trilogy” by gothic duo OVVLS (pronounced “owls.”) The previous two installments had been released on 7” and cassette but for part three the band wanted to do something different. “They were looking for an inventive way of releasing it. So after hours of brainstorming we came up with a cool idea.” The song was called Abandoned Ship and was released in a bottle. Each contained a handwritten note and the tracks were contained on a usb drive embedded in the cork!
“The trilogy was always going to be a trilogy” Vicky explains “they approached things as a project and recorded in a garage where they could see their breath.” The band promoted the trilogy during a five date tour of the USA in September.
The labels second signing are rockers Lilium. Vicky’s relationship with the band began when she saw them at this years Threshold Festival. “They are one of the hardest bands to describe because they are so versatile.” She tells me. “After listening to the debut single Disappear people liken it to rock, alternative rock or prog rock and throw around names like Pearl Jam, Silverchair and Deerhunter. But the next song is totally different.”
Disappear will be launched at an event at 24 Kitchen Street on November 25th.
Also on the bill at Kitchen Street on 25th will be fellow Liverpudlians Etches, fresh from some sell out dates in Manchester along with recent Deltasonic signees God On My Right who Vicky describes as “a breath of fresh air. Their energy is a great addition to any live bill”
Whilst Deathly’s roster consists at present of two Liverpool bands Vicky has her sights set further afield. “This is not a Liverpool or North West release” she explains “this is a worldwide release we are trying to get into as many places as we can. There are many great bands in Liverpool who you can see most weeks of the year they don’t seem to play anywhere else. Whilst it is good to be in a scene they can work for and against you. Sometimes it is good to be part of something, other times you need to break away.”
When I ask what is next for Deathly Records Vicky tells me that OVVLS are hoping to undertake a small UK tour soon and that Lilium will continue to release singles into the new year before releasing an EP. She does not see herself signing anyone else quite yet. “Whilst I do have a community I can lean on a lot of the hard work is done by myself. I’ll try to keep it to a two band setup for the moment.”
Physical copies of the singles in OVVLS Recrudescene Triliogy can be obtaind via their website here. The triology is also available digitally via iTunes, Deezer, Napster and Spotify.
Lilium will be launching their single Disappear on 25th November at 24 Kitchen Street. Entry is free. Join the Facebook event page here.