You'll have heard the news of the destruction of the Sony DADC distribution centre in Enfield by now - we wanted to help support the independent music labels who have lost most of their stock as a result of the rioters in London. (Independent DVD companies have also been affected - see how you can help here.) Below is a 30 minute playlist covering some of our recommendations of tracks/albums that you can purchase to support the labels.
The lovely Hannah Morgan (@fionchadd,who we met at a Clock Opera gig late last year) is organising the collective efforts to aid the independent labels at @_label_love_ and at a dedicated website, where you can donate via Paypal.
The situation with regards to insurance is unclear at the moment but what is clear is that many of these labels are dependent on the stock that they've lost and any compensation may not arrive until a much later date. The impact on labels (and artists) is well covered in this excellent NME article.
PIAS tweeted a comprehensive list of the labels affected, while Irish blog Nialler9 put together a list of the artists on the vast majority of those labels. Use the hashtag #labellove on Twitter, if you do purchase anything.
There are, of course, plenty of other causes which will save/rebuild lives (and I'm not just talking about riot-related charities) but let's save some livelihoods too. We recommend either buying a copy of an album from your favourite affected label(s) preferably directly from the label themselves or visiting your local independent record store.
- Frightened Rabbit - 'The Midnight Organ Fight' (Fat Cat)
'The Midnight Organ Fight' is widely considered one of the best albums in recent times - as shown in our blogger poll and wider poll to discern the best British albums of the noughties. 'Keep Yourself Warm' demonstrates the emotion and lyrical genius of the Scottish band.
STREAM: Frightened Rabbit - Keep Yourself Warm
- Theoretical Girl - 'Divided' (Memphis Industries)
This album went by largely unnoticed in 2009 but according to me, was "a bizarrely captivating mix of twee, angst, disco and haunting melodrama." 'The Hypocrite' captures many of those feelings.
STREAM: The Hypocrite by Theoretical Girl
- Fight Like Apes - 'Fight Like Apes And The Mystery Of The Golden Medallion' (Rubyworks)
A band which I've mentioned several times on FG and a song ('Jake Summers') that I've done the same. The album from whence it came was my favourite record of 2009, ousting the brilliant 'Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix' from the top spot with its spiky, anthemic synth-punk. And they're even better live than on record.
- Vampire Weekend - 'Contra' (XL)
I'm not sure how much of a backlash there remains toward Vampire Weekend but I was rather impressed with their second album. It might not have been on the same level as the debut but songs like 'Giving Up The Gun' showed they still know what they're doing.
STREAM: Vampire Weekend - Giving Up The Gun
- Jonsi - 'Go' (Smekkleysa)
'Go' was my favourite album of last year and the FG album of the year. Similar to Jonsi's work in Sigur Ros but with the aid of powerful arrangements from Nico Muhly, a selection of magnificently dynamic songs were birthed - 'Go Do' being just one example of the album's symphonic beauty.
Jónsi - Go Do
- These New Puritans - 'Beat Pyramid' (Angular)
Their orchestral follow-up 'Hidden' might have been particularly applauded by critics but I prefer the intensity and atmosphere of their debut album's inventive take on post-punk. 'En Papier' is one such inventive moment on a brilliant, over-looked album.
- Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip - 'Angles' (Sunday Best)
To quote myself from the past, "the juxtaposition of Dan Le Sac's electronica and Scroobius Pip's spoken word created an intriguing pop album, both lyrically and musically." Their debut album isn't consistently brilliant but when there are several songs like 'Letter From God To Man', then it's easier to forget about the filler.
Letter From God To Man by le sac Vs Pip
Head over to the individual label sites to purchase any of the albums, or other sites like Boomkat and eMusic.