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Designer Labels: Electronical Reeds – Part 2


ER Management Press Photo (1)-1

Continued from Part 1

How would you rate the Belgian scene these days? Is it vibrant? Accepting? Better or worse than it used to be?

Laurent: It’s complicated. There are great events and parties that take place today but it is not a movement any more, something that used to be the case a decade ago. Though while the scene has slowed down a lot during the mid-2000’s it is picking up now.

Felix: A very expansive question. It is different. It had its less prosperous moments but it has clearly been picking up over the past several years.

Arnaud: My perception is a bit darker… Even if there are some great events happening in Brussels, I feel that a lot of people are missing the key element of a party: the music. The pleasure of enjoying the music, discovering an artist and get into his or her vibe is becoming quite secondary.

That’s interesting. Are you faced with many difficulties with your parties or are the authorities generally accepting of what it is you guys do?

Felix: If you are to do a club night you do not really deal with authorities as it would be a club’s role. If you are doing something in unorthodox places you have to know the right people but even then your project must be very solid regarding things like neighbors issues and security. As the scene is picking up, it seems the authorities are more eager to listen to what we have to say.

That’s good to hear. What labels did you model yourselves on from the start? Who do you see as the benchmark for success?

Laurent: Personally I really looked up to historical labels like F Communications, R&S Records, Planet E and Strictly Rhythm in its early days. But the industry changes too. Today labels like Innervisions, Mobilee, Sincopat, and Katermukke are really good benchmarks.

Felix: While I was not involved that much at the start of the label I see FComm and R&S as the benchmarks for the earlier management team. Today we are closer to references Laurent mentioned: Mobilee, Innervisions and Katermukke. We finally have a real crew of artists and we invest all efforts and resources in them. The sound of the label is reshaping, becoming more coherent. There are no one shot releases like some in the earlier days of the label. It is a family and friends affair now. This is who we are and this is what we do.

Arnaud: As A&R, I don’t really have a benchmark per say. My references are sounds more than places they come from. Before my A&R position I rarely paid attention to the label the music was released on. I followed artists more. Now, as A&R I do, even though it is mostly Felix and Laurent that manage our relationships with different imprints and I get to focus on music.


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