Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Lie-in

It never feels quite right, claiming a day of travelling north to see one of your bands play in front of 1500 people and drinking with friends as "work", but nobody can deny the tiredness which follows. Similarly it's difficult to class a night out in London, running around panicing as the still-being-refurbished venue is literally a pile of rubble and dust just 30 minutes prior to opening, before watching three amazing bands absolutely pack out and wow the room, with friendly faces grinning at every turn. The two-day tiredness is difficult to deny, however. This is why I'm sitting in bed writing this blog post. This is why I'm going to be replying to emails from my bed. This is why I love working from home. No brave faces, no cold trips to the office, just pure, warm, comfort as the batteries recharge ready to tackle the world.

Shapes will soon be departing Nottingham, heading across the border to Glasgow for their final show with Glassjaw tonight. Sunday Daryl Palumbo thanked the guys for going out with them. The excited Brummie squeal could be heard for miles.

As you will see from yesterday's post, we've announced the next part of 2010's exciting plans. Mr W.K.'s single has been flying out, breaking previous pre-order records and lighting up my inbox with PayPal confirmations upon every check. We still have a couple of new bands to announce over the coming weeks, our first homegrown talent of the new year and a couple of very exciting prospects at that. It's going to be busy and I'm not sure there's enough lie-in time in a whole year to recharge my batteries that much! Maybe this will help...?

Monday, 25 January 2010

Party hard

I promised some exciting things in 2010. Let's have a little recap...

Walter Schreifels album and UK tour

Shapes and Pulled Apart By Horses touring with Glassjaw

Talons touring with Johnny Foreigner

The 52-part '10 Collection subscription series

And now this...



Check out www.bsmrocks.com for more info and to pre-order. I'll write more about this on here later in the week, but right now I'm eating potato waffles and that's kinda hampering my typing. Keeping it real, y'all

Come and celebrate with us at the Old Blue Last in London tonight. Free gig with Talons, Shoes And Socks Off and Tall Ships.

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Have you met Chase?

I feel the need to apologise for my absence in every new blog post at the moment. I guess the times of writing on here daily are gone, crushed by the realities of a growing workload and unfortunately more pressing matters. We're now three parts (Tangled Hair, Walter Schreifels and Ice Sea Dead People) into our 52 track '10 Collection and plan to unveil a new 7" release before the end of the week. We also have some amazing gigs coming up as Shapes head out in support of Glassjaw whilst Talons and Shoes And Socks Off play five free entry shows around the UK, with an array of wonderful supports (dates for both tours are listed on bsmrocks.com). On the other side of the Atlantic things are starting to take shape. Castevet's 12" is being pressed right now and will be available to pre-order from our online store over the next couple of days, Grown Ups hit the studio next week (with producer Matt Allison, who has previously worked with the likes of Alkaline Trio and Lawrence Arms) and will be touring the UK in May, Walter Schreifels returns to Brooklyn from a tour of Australia, where he'll be finishing up the artwork for his album and finalising plans for his UK tour in March/April, and Noumenon complete work on their new EP ahead of the split single with Talons. On that note, I'm going to hand this over to Chase, BSM US label manager, to say hi...



Hello all. As was stated back a few months ago, I will be running the US "branch" of Big Scary Monsters. Kev and I thought it would be fun for me to share a few things about myself and post 5 U.S. artists I personally think you should all be listening too! I hope you enjoy what you read and if so, maybe I will post here more often!

5 U.S. bands you may or may not know about but should:

- Noumenon (Chicago, IL): This 3 piece "math rock" band will seriously blow your mind. Its distorted, its ridiculously technical but at the same time tasteful. The bands forthcoming EP is going to bend this over-saturated genre into something really original and well, FUN. - http://www.myspace.com/daftkrunk

- Into It. Over It (Chicago, IL): Another act from the wonderful city of Chicago! Into. It Over It is the brainchild of ex Damiera, The Progress and Up Up Down Left Right Left Right B A Start member Evan Weiss. Its really a flash back to late 90's emo but with a bit of a modern feel. Think Death Cab For Cutie, Braid and Piebald all mashed up into one artist. Songs range from upbeat and technical to quiet and emotional. One of my favorite up and coming songwriters! - http://www.myspace.com/intoitoverit

- The Felix Culpa (Chicago, IL/Milwaukee, WI): The Felix Culpa is a band I've been into since I was in high school. I've had the joy of playing shows with them in my previous bands and over the years watching them continue to write these incredible songs. A great, great live band. One of the best drummers I've ever seen live. If you are into some really solid post hardcore jams, I highly recommend The Culpa. They have a new record coming out at the end of this month titled Sever Your Roots and I think you should check it out! - http://www.myspace.com/thefelixculpa

- Mountain Asleep (Louisville, KY): If you like your punk rock fast with a dash of melodic, technical guitar/drum work then you will love this band. Some of the more fun live experiences I've had the past year have been at Mountain Asleep shows. Check out this band, download the record, and learn all the words: http://www.ifyoumakeit.com/album/mountain-asleep/hello-anxious

- Thousandaires (Brooklyn, NY): It doesn't get much better than this. Catchy, upbeat punk rock with tons gang vocals and sing-a-longs. Thousandaires features members of Bridge and Tunnel, Get Bent and Halo Fauna. How can you go wrong with that combination? You can download the record for free here: http://www.ifyoumakeit.com/album/thousandaires/land-seal-demo/

(Sorry about the abundance of Chicago bands in my lists. I grew up with this scene and call it home. Too many talented bands you should all know about!)

a few of my favorite bands/artists:

- The Lawrence Arms
- The Jesus Lizard
- Sonic Youth
- Modern Life Is War
- Owen
- The Smiths
- Owls
- The Ghost
- Hot Water Music
- Black Flag
- Fela Kuti
- My Bloody Valentine- Colossal
- Converge
- Fugazi
- Sigur Rós
- Michael Jackson
- Tom Waits
- Bob Dylan
- The Promise Ring
- Braid
- Cap'n Jazz
- Morrissey
- Alkaline Trio (Pre Good Morning)

a few records I'm currently listening to:

- A Sunny Day in Glasgow Ashes Grammar (Carrot Top)
- Lord Newborn and the Magic Skulls Lord Newborn and the Magic Skulls (Ubiquity)
- Narrows New Distances (Deathwish)
- Phoenix Wolfgang Amaadeus Phoenix (Glass Note)
- Russian Circles Geneva (Suicide Squeeze)
- Toe For Long Tomorrow (Manchu Picchu)
- Noumenon Party Mathematics (TBA)
- Pissed Jeans King of Jeans (Sub Pop)
- Dear Landlord Dream Homes (Red Scare)
- Dirty Projectors Ascending Melody 7" (Domino)
- The Pains Of Being Pure At Higher Than The Stars EP

a few books I'm currently reading:

- One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez
- god is not Great by Christopher Hitchens
- Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse

Feel free to contact me anytime!
email: chase.igliori@gmail.com
blog: http://chaseinaction.blogspot.com/
twitter: http://www.twitter.com/chaseigliori


Monday, 11 January 2010

Everything's starting to come together

Friday afternoon I was sitting right where I am as I type this. It had been four days since I last left the flat, there was no food in and the whole country had been forced to a halt under a blanket of snow. I was struggling with writing a press release for one of my favourite artists, getting annoyed with my HTML inabilities as I fought to update the website with news of another, whilst being frustrated by the fact that I couldn't announce a tour for one of our bands (and one of our former bands) supporting one of my top 3 of all-time. It's moments like that which both reaffirm your love for the job, and make you realise you're a dick. Struggles whilst working with three bands you have absolutely adored for nearly a decade aren't real struggles. Get a grip! This is incredible.

As you may well know by now, the touring band in question is none other than the mighty Glassjaw, and the supporting bands are our beloved Shapes and the heroes of Yorkshire's most macho rock n roll stars, Pulled Apart By Horses. An absolute triumph. Plans changed, travel booked, Manchester Academy, here I come. Full dates and details can be found on www.bsmrocks.com

As you may also have learnt in the past 5 minutes, the 2nd installment of our '10 Collection, new BSM signing and Friday afternoon website villain is Walter Schreifels. He of Rival Schools, Quicksand and Gorilla Biscuits fame will be releasing his debut solo record this spring. It's a brilliant record from one of the most important men in the history of punk and hardcore music, and one I'll be talking a lot more about on this blog over the coming months.

As you still won't know, because I'm not announcing it for another week yet, the third aforementioned artist now has a ready and waiting press release, along with some incredible artwork and t-shirt design, which will literally blow your mind. Sit tight.

A huge month for this tiny label, but keeping your feet well and truly on the ground is important. As such, I'm off to meet my Mum for lunch now, then home to stuff some envelopes and tackle the inbox.

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Punktastic / Puntastic

Paul from Punktastic (a name with such a good ring to it I sometimes consider chaning my name to something beginning with B and getting involved in the alliteration fun) interviewed me at the end of last year regarding BSM, the Christmas number one and the future of independent labels. Have a read.

In almost completely unrelated news, save the spelling similarities, I came up with a couple of puns this week so good I physically patted my own back. They relate to a new, as yet unannounced signing (yes, another) and a little fan club idea we'll be kickstarting for them shortly.

Friday, 8 January 2010

The Ten Collection

Oxford has been in chaos this week! My poor little city is just not equipped to deal with adverse weather conditions as the snow has reduced us to a shivering, sludgy, slowed down mess. I think I was one of only 12 people who did any work on Wednesday. It was my first official working day of the year, so with a clearly defined to-do list and a sense of purpose I didn't know existed within, I resisted the urge to join the rest of the population building snowmen outside and sat at my desk with a Scrooge-like discipline. Despite all the trips, partying and Tweeting, I'm taking this year seriously. It's a big one, ladies and gentlemen, not least because I've committed to a 52 part singles club!

So, the '10 Collection. I think I've briefly mentioned the plan on here before, but for the sake of clarity, here it is again. In exchange for subscribing to the series for £15 (going up to 17 from February), you will receive:

a) Exclusive BSM t-shirt
b) 10% discount for our webstore, valid for the entire year
c) Entry into monthly prize draws for free CDs, gig tickets, etc
d) A lovely MP3 emailed to you each and every single week

Personally, I think that's pretty damn reasonable.

The 52 MP3s will be made up of our favourite unsigned bands, exclusive first airings from forthcoming BSM releases and new music from some of our friends labels. It all kicked off this week with 'Cardboard Hilltop' from Tangled Hair, the new solo project from Alan Welsh, ex-guitarist and singer in the much-missed Colour. Next week it'll be followed by a track from an as yet unannounced new artist of ours, who has played a huge part in the punk and hardcore scene in America for a very long time now. I'm not telling you who it is, but you should be excited!

You can subscribe to the series at www.bsmrocks.com/10collection and the Tangled Hair track will be sent out immediately. And as I'm feeling nice today, you can download a second, brand new song, of Alan's called 'Right Here', right here, even if you're crazy and decide not to sign up to the collection.

Here's a photo of Alan you may not want to see. Enjoy:

Tuesday, 5 January 2010

It's a disappeared glacier

The new video for 'Another Bag Of Bones' by Kevin Devine.

Monday, 4 January 2010

You know you pretty much have the best life in the world...

...When you wake up and you're this guy:




...Or, you wake up at 8am and can't get wait to get the new working year started.

But then you realise it's freezing so get the laptop and scamper back to bed.

Where you switch on the heated blanket.

And lie there sending emails all morning.

Including some to one of your all-time favourite musicians about a new release.

Which will be coming out on SQUARED vinyl.

With handwritten thank you notes to the first 50 purchasers.

And you also email one of the most influential musicians in punk/hardcore history.

And he writes back.

Because you're working together on a new record.

Then you have arguably the best, most pun-happy idea ever.

Before turning the electric blanket down 'cos it's getting real hot.

And then spending some time trying to decide where to go in March.

Canada?

New York?

Texas?

Or maybe all three.

And just when you think things can't get any better.

You remember you've got loads of pastrami in the fridge.

And all of a sudden, it doesn't matter that you're not Jay-Z.

Friday, 1 January 2010

Happy new year

I'm sitting on the sofa, dangerously hungover picking at a tin of Roses, surrounded by KFC debris whilst watching the darts on TV. It's January 1st 2010 but in all honesty, it could be any of the last 5 years. They all start the same, really.

I'm back in the office (ie sitting at my desk some 5ft away from where I am right now) from the 4th but already find myself chomping at the bit ready to get this year underway. We have so, SO many exciting things coming up. Yesterday morning a few emails were being bounced around confirming the final details of our first 'proper' release of the year. It's a 7" but not as you know it. I think that I'll be announcing that one very close to another big one for us, in what I'm building up in my head as the biggest week in this little label's history so far. Exciting times, indeed.

The '10 Collection information will be up online over the weekend, so if you get a chance, please do check out www.bsmrocks.com and see what you think. It's a daunting project, offering up a new release every single week for the whole year, so I'll be looking for a little help from you all at somepoint.

Anyway, the darts is hotting up and this is a bit of a nothing post really, just wanted to put something out there to welcome in the new year. It's going to be a good one.

Here's a lovely video of Shoes And Socks Off playing live in Trafalgar Square during the BSM xmas tour last month. It's a belated Christmas gift. Much love.