Cultures of Soul is an American record label from Boston founded by Deano Sounds in 2010.
Like so many other labels of the younger generation specialising in re-issues, Cultures of Soul started off as a radio programme. The dream to one day form a record label was carried around with Deano Sounds for a long time. »It has cost me a lot of time to find the music, which I think is worthy to be re-issued«, he explains and at the same time outlines his philosophy: »I want to publish the most interesting music around on the planet, which has never been heard before – and moreover works on the dance floor!«
Amongst others, many respective Soul-45s romp about on the label, including extensive compilations. Cultures of Soul places very specific attention to regional music, aside of the western narrative. Brazilian Boogie from the late 70’s meets Bollywood soundtracks from the early 80’s, or synthesizer-driven Disco sounds from South Africa. A conscious decision? »Definitely«, Deano Sounds affirms. »For me, the music is at its most interesting, when several styles and cultures interact with one another.« Along the lines of a classic call-and-response pattern of Gospel and Blues, which have their roots from the African continent, the DJ explains.
The DJ spends the biggest part of his working hours playing detective games. Since before a compilation can be compiled, mastered and pressed, the permissions must be clarified. For a collection with cross-over songs between Gospel and Disco, he works together with »vinyl-archaeologist« Greg Belson. The two write a mutual wish list, then Deano Sounds sets out to find artists – no easy task, most of the labels were either shut down, or were obscure, private pressings. A lot of effort to re-release the best, unheard music on the planet. KC
Riverette is a Spanish record label from Madrid founded by the producer team Dos Attack in 2014.
Before Carlos and Andreas founded their label for rough, dreamy Club music, they had already figured out as teenagers a vague plan. »At that age, you just want to be a part of something, which you think is the coolest thing in the world«. »We are certainly not over it just yet. Indeed, over time it has just become worse. Our aim was as naive as ambitious: publish awesome records, come what may!« The awesome records from Riverette transient between House and Techno with a ragged analogue-feeling. However, more important for the two than classification possibilities is the relationship to the people behind the music. »Of course we ask ourselves: ›Is this generic?‹ If the answer is ›yes‹, we don’t publish it. »It can of course be Genre music, but it cannot be generic«.
The first Riverette catalogue number even came from the king of Genre music: Legowelt. »In a certain sense, Legowelt was somehow like our Moby Dick. When we planned the label Riverette we always referred to him in the same breath.« Over the internet, a contact was established, then Dos Attack soon threw a common party with the Dutch synthie-odd-ball. »He is presumably one of the humblest and most chilled out guys from the entire scene and his output is unbelievable.« It was also important for the duo to host their first, own track on Riverette on a split with Legowelt. Even though the producers describe themselves as quite different characters, they have stayed together for years. »From the beginning, we had a kind of old, married couple vibe going on«, is their description of their own work-life balance which isolates them on their home turf.
That may help explain why Riverette collected only few local acts in the back catalogue, including Dos Attack and Skygaze. »It is just like a we against the world situation.«
Soul Has No Tempo is an Australian record company from Brisbane founded by Ali Tomoana and Gavin Boyd in 2013.
With just three records released, Soul Has No Tempo has managed to blossom into being one of the most exciting Australian record labels. Taking account that Soul Has No Tempo was originally just a podcast, a platform to »introduce musical discoveries in a weekly live mix«, recall Ali Tomoana and Gavin Boyd. That changed when the two met Jordan Rakei. It’s hard to imagine today without the Neo-Soul prodigy. Eventually this led to the duo otherwise known as an »unbelievable local talent« to not only conjure up an artists agency out of nowhere, but to also publish their first EP »Groove Curse« in 2014. Jordan Rakei at that time sent around heaps of demos. From the music, we made a truly special EP which undoubtedly also deserved a vinyl release, in order to cherish the moment.
After the EP’s release in 2014, nothing was released from the label for at least one year, because they wanted to take the time to tackle the project properly. Only with the second release – Jordan Rakei’s debut album »Cloak« – was the final step to establishing a label completed. The record was a success and it was quickly certified that this was more than just a one-hit wonder. Soul Has No Tempo went on to bring out their third release – the debut album of the young producer Sampology – you could see already at the low frequency of the releases published that Boyd and Tomoana did not just want to bring out music which could sell well; rather they wanted to support artists, give them a space to develop, and publish music which they themselves were blown away by.
Preferably, Soul Has No Tempo likes to publish on vinyl, even though Boyd and Tomoana admit that »in 2016 the format doesn’t matter«. However, the two have both collected records for years, and naturally they also want to own a copy of their label’s music. »We value the physical format and nostalgic feeling that resonate from records«, which is why the visual part of Soul Has No Tempo is always undertaken by exciting artists. With their one-off artworks, the »home-grown« talent and naturally the fascinating, diverse music, which the label’s name Soul Has No Tempo lives up to, Boyd and Tomoana without a doubt satisfy their requirements »to create a piece of art with every release, which we are all proud to have been a part of«.
Sonor Music Editions is an Italian record label from Rome founded by Lorenzo Fabrizi in 2012.
The label was preceded by other projects, which specialised in certain Genres: Armagiddon Times for example centered its focus on Punk music, Synthetic Shadows released re-issues of Post-Punk and Minimal Synth-records. Sonor Music Editions is however a very different story, expresses the label’s Manager Andrea Galtieri. »When you listen today to the tracks by Alessandro Alessandroni, Piero Umiliani, or Mario Molino, it’s hard to believe that they were composed in a certain era, because they still sound so fresh today«, he says. »It makes Italian Library Music so unique.« The regional limitation of the re-issue labels is no obstacle for Sonor Music Editions. In the meantime, the team gathered together an archive of over 5,000 releases, which together with the catalogue – a selection of the absolute favourites – is getting bigger. »Our motto goes ›Spin locally, push globally‹«, Galtieri explains. »We are always on the lookout for records, which work all over the world.«
The archaeological work is a full-time job, admits Galtieri. Since Sonor Music Editions is very strict about it. »It just needs two things: dedication and knowledge. Every release is lawfully license and copyrights are clarified. We have nothing to do with illegal presses and bootlegs. We want to support artists, which is why full transparency is very important to us.« This also extends to the production process of the curious albums which have found their very own niche, within the Library Music Scene. Each piece is designed in Italy and produced from the original master-tapes. All Sonor Music Editions releases are limited to 500 pieces. »We want it to be the way that the people can buy an unique record, like how it was in the 70’s.« Collectors’ requirements are not the be all and end all. Other labels insist on records which in relevant circles have a certain prominence, thinks Galtieri. »The people are always saying: ›Wow, what is that?‹«, he says. There will be plenty more enthralling reasons: the composition is, after all, enormous. KC