...to Awkward Aardvark. Lots of As with some consonants thrown in to combat boredom. We are a label founded by some mad cap vinyl nerds with a passion for fast and loud music and the goal to be not for profit.
Yes, we are NFP as we only cover our costs and give all that is left over to a charity. This could be a charity involved with helping the community that is most important to the bands. This could be homeless shelters, supporting LGBT or artists fallen on hard times. This could be your local hospital or help for the poor. Ultimately it is down to the bands who we support as they choose the charity most important to them..
We love the idea of releasing music that makes an impact the moment you put down the needle. That one great song that you cannot get out of your head. We hope that by combining great music with giving something back we make an impact beyond the music.Ambititious? Perhaps. Maybe a little awkward....
So let's say we wanna be a band on one side of your next release, how does it all work?
Very good question!
We aim to release a split 7", every quarter. We press limited amounts usually 300, but if both bands agree we press more. We release songs from 2 bands, one band per side and as many songs as can we fit at 45rpm. These could be demos, unreleased tracks, promos for an upcoming or recently released album or special collaboration on a non exclusive basis.
Do you do colours?
Each pressing will be on 3 different colours, one for each band and one label colour. The label colour is pinkish red as our aardvark, the band colours we leave up to the bands to decide.
Why are you guys doing this? Are you for real?
Yes pretty much. We have good jobs so this is a hobby, as long as we cover our costs we keep pressing. Also as we work for record plants our costs are not as high so we can actually make a difference even if we just press 300. We also believe that the punk and hardcore community is really a true community. Having toured and worked with bands for most of our lives we have met some of the nicest people that care and go beyond being artist, we hope to enable them to give something back without having to take financial risks themselves.
Do you do LPs and other formats?
We will start selling 12" LPs by some of our bands or releases from friendly labels such as SBAM Records who allowed us to press a very limited amount of vinyl of their releases on our most awkward orange colour. Watch this space!
How about merchandise?
We get asked a lot if we do T-Shirts with the Aardvark logo so bravely we have printed a small amount and sold these at festivals to great praise, one person was so excited that he bought 2(!) upon which we hugged for a minute or two. Good times! We may decide to sell these online too, but shipping these with 7"s is not ideal...
I have 2 bands ready for a split, would you be interested?
Of course, this is ideal. We would love to release your music as a ready made package deal, but we have only 2 tiny conditions: Do you play loud and fast music and are a living touring band? If so, drop us a line and send us some tracks!
So, whats keeping you?
Be awkward, make a difference!
What about the sleeve design etc.?
The bands have full artistic control for their side of label, insert and cover artwork. We supply all the templates to create the artwork and manage the pressing plant side of things
So who pays for what?Bands only have to supply vinyl ready WAV for pressing. Otherwise, as a band you pay nothing for the pressing. Instead cover the costs for the pressing and give free copies to the band. We arrange delivery of free copies to each band, in proportion to the pressing numbers free of charge to do with the records what they want. This is a thank you for contributing to the release. So if we press 400 copies for example each band gets 75 copies consisting of 65 of the band's colour plus 5 of each of the other two colours. Each band also gets 2 test pressings.
How do you donate to charity?
As we work for a record plant our costs are comparatively low, and so is our break even, hence we can afford to give the bands an amount of records for their own use. We sell any records that we don't give to the band online here to cover our costs and all surplus goes to charity. We set a minimum price for the record but we also have a "name your price" option to donate something extra. All donations will go to charity regardless! We want to support charitiies that are important to our bands so we let them decide who we donate to.
Whilst we have to account for VAT, Awkward Aardvark Record is an unincorporated association with special exemption from the tax office. So every penny of the of the sales price contributes to the charities chosen by the band.