Monday, March 30, 2009

Shortie on Earache - why?

Question: Do you think the problem with shortie was that not just that earache was trying to get into a scene that you werent used to and didnt really understand ( screamo), but also shortie were distintivly second rate when compared to the big boys of the genre Glassjaw Thursday, Funeral for a Friend etc? not saying this as a shot at Earache im just wondering if you wanted to enter a newish genre for the label surely it would have been better to do it with a better band? From:

Answer: Well in hindsight you are exactly right,its true the band failed to catch on so it must be deemed a failure.I agree that death metal and grind are the styles Earache is steeped in mostly, with 2 decades experience in the trenches promoting that stuff.A screamo band like Shortie might be outside our comfort zone, but we are quite open-minded and adaptable, so enjoyed working with them a lot.I dont think that was the reason for lack of success- I just think sometimes you just need the right breaks to go your way. Back in 2000 or so, Shortie seemed to have a decent stab at success because they came from Sacramento, Deftones liked them, and they also had a lot of high profile backers and supporters in the biz, actually.
The Shortie debut "Worthless Smiles" was first released in USA by a group of dudes running a company which placed music in films and videos- GoBig Entertainment- the main guy Tim Riley left during that time to work as music supervisor for Activision- he now heads up the Guitar hero team, he decides what music goes on the game.
Noted LA producer Dave Dominguez who recorded Autonomy for us, and later did Linea 77's Italian top 10 charting album was the one who really befriended the band, he supported and backed them to the max.
By the time of the second album Without A Promise' (all their recordings begin with letter W- even their demos, fact fans ) they had recruited a fast rising management -Eric Rushing's Artery Foundation - he now does bands like A Day TO Remember & Devil wears Prada- but back then was just starting out.

Frankly speaking, part of the reason for failure is the obscene amount of dollars spending thats required to breakthrough into the highly competitive screamo scene, because the pay-off can be spectacular- like say Paramore.Victory records took massive gambles and reaped the rewards with Thursday and many more, because they pretty much invented the screamo genre.Being Indie they did it thru sheer hard work and clever promotion.
Major labels on the other hand, would routinely invest $1,000,000 into hot new acts, and Earache's investment would have been just a fraction of that.If you want to see what a million dollars differnce in marketing budgets looks like on screen, compare the 2 video clips below, both directed by Shane Drake:

Shortie- Truth 2005 (Earache) Directed by Shane Drake ($10,000)

Paramore- Misery Business 2007 (Fueled By Ramen) Directed by Shane Drake ($100,000 est)

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