A cd, are you sure you want to do that?
In these times of digital transiency, in which laptops by default come without a cd tray and in which YouTube and Facebook are more influential than ever, a cd seems to be a useless remainder of a long gone era. With high costs and payoff that’s insecure to say the least, why choose for making one?
I’ll be frank: the cd itself isn’t merely a goal, more of a way to get somewhere. We – RED – are the product here. I could write endless texts about what we are about, but a cd is worth more than a thousand words. It makes sense to choose that medium as our visit card, as a statement of our musical vision. We want to present a good product in which we choose to strive for the very best for both the ear and the eye.
Can’t you just make some mp3s?
It seems so easy: you simply send your music into the world as an mp3. But does that make it of immortal value? How to stand out? It strikes me how many people in my circle are buying vinyl nowadays. There is an added value to the care and attention that has been spent to a product as a whole. With that I mean a well thought-out order of compositions, mixed and mastered in such way that everything sounds as a unity. With appealing artwork to top it off. Not only do you keep control over the order and the artwork when choosing or a physical carrier, the sound quality that you have been working on so hard in the studio doesn’t get compromised by meager mp3 compression.
Wouldn’t vinyl be the thing to do then?
Good question! We have – as we love elpees ourselves so much – strongly considered to do a vinyl release as well. Because of the high production costs we decided to not do it just now. But who knows if you guys tell us you would love that!
Financial consciousness and artistship.. is that possible?
Making a living as a musician isn’t getting any easier nowadays. Subsidies have dried up, the amount of clubs has seriously decreased and the average Dutchman isn’t that enthusiastic about culture anymore. There has always been a huge taboo on artists thinking about an earnings model, until recently all at once cultural entrepreneurship is the buzzword. The current generation music students gets lessons in it as evident part of the curriculum. Reality nowadays simply is that it takes a huge effort to find yourself a place in the cultural world. Does this mean that we should make “music for the millions”? Absofuckinglutely not! As far as I’m concerned l’art pour l’art stays right in place.
From reactions I sometimes sense that some people in the audience is still stuck in the old taboo thinking pattern: they fear that with designating the factor money, artistry is being scrapped. Truth is, that with more financial means a lot more is possible. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand that a cd that has been recorded in a good studio with top of the line equipment and dito instruments sounds better because of the extra money investment.
Couldn’t you get yourselves a record deal?
Since the digitalisation cd sales have tremendously decreased while at the same moment the possibilities of spreading music rose to new heights. In the olden days – when all music was done through official record labels – the record executives acted as gatekeepers: they were curating their stable by keeping the quality at a high level and finding new talent that fit the image of the label while representing the new “zeitgeist”. With many labels at hand, as a good musician you would always fit in somewhere. With the collapse of the record industry there is only a few labels left and chances are they won’t run for you the way you would hope they would. With the choice of an independent release we were able to choose the best studios, engineers and graphic design with everything in our own vibrrrant style!