Other Voices Records is both an independent label and a mail-order from Russia, rising from the ashes of the pioneering post-industrial/ambient label Tantric Harmonies. It was first titled Intuition Records but was later renamed. Musically, they don’t limit themselves to genres, the only requirements are that you should be a creative artist. The name itself is derived from a classic post-punk song by The Cure, and a homage to both the band and that particular song. There’s much going on in means of productiveness and their releases are featured as downloadable, CD, tape and vinyl. Which gives a good range to the releases. Artists and bands featured on this label is everything from Nagamatzu to Venus In Furs. With that said, they’ve got a wide range of genres represented on their label. I took some time to interview Oleg from this label, both about the releases but also the history of the label as a whole and much more.
What could you tell me about the history of Other Voices Records? Who are you, what’s your mission and what was your first release?
– Well, officially Other Voices established in 2007 and was firstly titled as Intuition Records, but a few years later I renamed it. It was born out of the ashes of my first experimental/ambient/industrial label Tantric Harmonies I ran from 2000 to 2007. So the first release in 2007 was an EP from Angie Damage. Mission? Death to false Metal! No, I have no mission, I just want to keep some good music alive.
How would you say that your situation affects you, being from Russia and all, what are the positive things about the Russian music business and the negative?
– Hm, I’m afraid there are not many positive things in making business in Russia. We are too far away from world scene. Big distributors don’t want to work with Russian labels. Shipping rates are too expensive. Post service is slow. The only good thing is manufacturing, it’s a little bit cheaper than in Europe, but quality and options are not guaranteed. So my answer to this is: it’s fucking hard!
What would you say separates Other Voices Records from other labels out there, and did you drawn any other inspiration from other labels you found to be good?
– I don’t think there’s a big difference from one indie label to another. They’re all operated by enthusiasts and every label reflect the musical taste of its owner. Not sure about inspiration, but I really like what Dark Entries and Anna Logue do.
Which other labels would you recommend?
– Genetic Music release very good stuff too.
Your latest news release-wise is “Sing My Body Electric” by Tobias Bernstrup and “Windows on the World” by The Silicion Scientist. What could you tell me about those two releases, how much time did they take to release, and how did they come to happen?
– “Sing My Body” was released very quickly. I do really love what Tobias do. “Windows” took time, but I think it’s worth it. I’m 100% satisfied with the result of both releases. They sound and look just great!
When it comes to pricing, what do you recognize to be a fair price for consumers? What is it that decides what price-tags each release is going to get?
– I try to keep a more or less mid-price policy. And I offer discount prices on pre-sale actions as well as some season sales and I have special prices for old products.
I checked my mail and the upcoming releases are “Growing Seeds” by Lust For Youth and “The Big Wheel” by Stress. Is there anything you could tell me about it, anything you can reveal?
– Lust for Youth is in stock now and I plan to have Stress released for mid-Autumn. “The Big Wheel” will include all material from the original mini-album + lot’s of rare and unreleased songs from the period. A very good present for all fans of new wave and early EBM.
One of the most interesting releases on your label is definitely the Indians In Moscow limited-CD, which also got me to your website. Why did you decide to release anything with that legendary band?
– Why? Indians are fantastic! Being honest I was surprised it remained unre-released until now. It looks like there’s not many people besides the UK that know about IIM (90% orders I got came from UK), but I strongly recommend this album to post-punk freaks!
Have you collaborated with any other label on any release, if so, was it successful?
– Yes, we did a co-release with the American label The Fossil Dungeon, famous for its ethereal goth releases and fantastic cover arts. And we did The Silicon Scientist “Windows” CD with Anna Logue Records. Also, Eleven Pond was released on 50/50 with an artist, so we can call it a collaboration. Yes, every experience was very positive.
You’ve also got quite a varied roster, everything from old-school post-punk to new school synth-pop and you say you want a mix of both new and old. How would an artist or band get released on your label, what are you looking for specifically?
– My problem is my wide range musical interests. Well, the answer is quite simple: if I like it — I release it. New or old, it doesn’t matter, even the genre doesn’t matter. I don’t want to limit myself and my label with one-two genres. Nowadays 80% of my releases are more or less fit the new wave/minimal genre, but if I find some original metal band tomorrow, I can release it too.
Which one of your releases have been the most popular and what part of the world buys most of your records?
– Most popular releases are Neon, Eleven Pond and Tobias Bernstrup. 99.9% of my customers are from Europe and the US.
Could you tell me anything about other releases, which ones are your personal favorite?
– Ha! Everyone wants to ask me about it! I DO LOVE THEM ALL! Seriously!
It’s quite odd that you release CD, Tapes, Downloads and Vinyl – isn’t that expensive in the long run?
– In few lines: yes, it’s expensive, but also a great fun. Vinyl is beautiful, CD’s convenient, and Cassettes are great fun.
What artists and bands would you like to see be released on your label?
– Have no idea at the moment, too busy with current releases for 2012-2013.
Thank you for this interview? The word is free now, say what you wish!
– Thank you for good questions.
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