Born in the late 90’s from the American Midwest hardcore scene, with ‘godfather of hardcore’ Doormouse at the controls and featuring artists like Stunt Rock, J-Slim, Anonymous and, of course, Doormouse. From one the most forward-thinking hardcore labels in the US also came releases from the likes of Venetian Snares, Unibomber and Poncho Nightmare along the way. This is stuff for the discerning hardcore rave fan, and Doormouse agreed to an interview with us…
1 – How and why did you come about starting Addict Records?
I started Addict after I started its sister label, Distort. Distort has always been about hardcore tracks and I have always been into hard stuff, but also into abstract styles. I started Addict to release good tracks from various artists and friends whose music I love.
2 -When you started Addict Records, were there any labels that you could say were a reference/inspiration for your efforts?
Drop Bass Network was a big influence as far as helping me get started. Kurt Eckes was a rave promoter in Milwaukee, the biggest one, and also ran his awesome label, which he still does. He helped me get contacts and figure out how to operate. Another influence after I had started was Gordon aka Bambule. He turned me on to sounds that I had never heard and changed a lot of the ways I thought about music.
3 – Since the inception of Addict Records, are there any events in the history of the label that you’d consider as particularly relevant, from difficulties and setbacks to successes?
WTW barn parties have always been known to be part of the label. These were festivals of music in a barn in the rural US. People came from all over the US and Canada to attend, and these events were seen as being at the forefront of a movement in the late 90’s/early 00’s. We went to great lengths to make these intimate down home events that suspended reality for a night. After a few years, some people did some things that messed this up. As far as success, getting another record out is always a great success and very relevant.
4 – So far what would you consider as special highlights (or successful) releases and artists in the history of Addict Records?
Going full colour for sleeves was a great moment, after starting off with white labels. Being able to put out friends music that I believe in has always felt good. I consider all of our releases to be successful, and almost all of them are sold out. My favourites are usually the worst sellers.
5 – Are there any releases in particular that you would recommend as good ‘introductory material’ to the Addict Records label?
Most recently, “This Is Stunt Rock Vol. 3” and “Xylophone Jism” are great LP’s. Some of our releases are more DJ oriented, but these are more listening records. They were both released in conjunction with Cock Rock Disco last year.
6 – Looking back, do you have any regrets with Addict Records? If you could go back and change something, what would it be?
7 – An obvious question, but what is Addict Records ‘relationship’ with the Internet? From promotion tool and digital sales to file sharing and piracy, how has it affected you?
The internet has not greatly affected anything for us, other than wasting time. We sold out of releases before it, and we still do. No big change other than being able to order salt free butter and magic wands at three in the morning.
8 – Slightly related to the previous question, how do you see the concept of ‘netlabels’ and, as a labelhead, what is your perspective as to the future and evolution of physical media (CDs, vinyl, etc)?
A net label is fine with me. Vinyl has always been about quality control. If your stuff is not good, you’ll find out fast when you put it on vinyl. The internet is good at lying to you through collections of yes men. Vinyl never lies.
9 – Perspectives for the future, what lies in the horizon for Addict Records? Can you share some long-term goals and where would you like to see the label heading to?
We’ll continue to release high quality vinyl until I die. Then I’ll bury my nose in the ground and sniff.
10 – Seeing that we’ve just given a soapbox of promotion please show some fair play… what other labels/artists would you recommend at the moment and why?
Merle Haggard, Otto Von Schirach, DJ Baseck, Venetian Snares, DJ Induce, DJ Anonymous, Stunt Rock, Skymall, Invisible Robots, Eric B. and Rakim, Costes, Captain Ahab, and vagina. These are all things I recommend. Gun shot sound effects too…they’re hardcore. That and ragga samples in breakcore/jungle. Really exciting.
11 – Thank you for your time, do you have any final comments/requests?
One foot in a quagmire, one in a blender.
— interview by Kate Turgoose & Miguel de Sousa (January 2007)