Ever dreamt of running your own record label releasing the cool music you love? Well, we recently discovered a couple of guys who, on top of being in excellent bands from in and around Liverpool, have done just that. So we invited Krystian Hudson, co-founder of Society of Losers Records, to inspire you with his tale of founding and establishing an independent record label.
The initial idea of Society of Losers was conceived midway through 2016 when myself and Craig (Twigg) met up and had some pizza in legendary Liverpool DIY music venue Maguires Pizza Bar.
Both us are from Widnes but had never butted heads before. Both being in new bands, we met through the DIY music scene in Liverpool. Maguires was like my second home, I’d been running shows there for a few years under the Yeah Buddy! DIY banner.
I was looking to do something fresh and more communal, so when I met up with Craig the first time, we were shooting ideas back and forth for about two hours, discussing how many great weirdo bands there were around and how much good stuff was coming out of Widnes.
We originally decided to put on a show in September that would be much different than most: a whole venue takeover, our branding everywhere, goody bags and themed cocktails (including Soy un Perdador which was a White Russian with Soy Milk… no one got the reference and no one bought it).
It was the perfect kick-off for us. My band Salt the Snail kicked the night off, followed by Sunshine Frisbee Laserbeam who we’ve worked with several times since and headlined by DIY heroes Johnny Foreigner. A lot of people wanted to get involved from that point.
From there we decided to look into the idea that we would move forward as a record label that put on shows for our bands. Originally, we just put our own music out, Craig’s band Forever in Debt released their debut EP Born to Lose via the label and then, in early 2017, Salt the Snail released their debut single COFFEE. Both caught a nice bit of traction and some good attention for the label.
Enthused by the response to our own releases and Forever in Debt’s cassette selling out we started asking around record shops in Liverpool and Manchester. A particularly discouraging response from a curmudgeonly Mancunian (naming no names) provided the impetus for us to want to prove people wrong.
We started speaking seriously with Bisch Nadar and Wife, who became our third and fourth members respectively, we put EP’s out by both on CD and cassette. By the end of 2017, we had signed our fifth band Dead Houses, who were looking to release several singles. All of these bands had been favourites of ours for a while and we signed them based upon not only how bad ass they all were but how dedicated they were to theirs and our cause.
Starting out in 2018 with five bands we had our work cut out for us with each band ready to release music. Both Dead Houses and Salt the Snail had released new music by February, adding more CDs and cassettes to our stockroom.
We began speaking to one of my absolute favourite bands, Sweet Deals on Surgery, and were delighted to add them to the label. Throughout 2018 our shows spread far and wide, several in Liverpool and Manchester, our first two shows in our hometown of Widnes that went down a storm, shows in Leeds and Sheffield and the first ever LOSERPALOOZA – an all-day, two-stage noise-fest in The Peer Hat and Aatma, Manchester.
Heading into 2019, we are six bands strong with Sweet Deals on Surgery’s self-titled EP being released as our first ever vinyl (screw you Mancunian curmudgeon). We have signed the sublime and outrageous Mr Ted, who will be releasing several singles and their debut album along with new releases imminent for Bisch Nadar, Salt the Snail and Forever in Debt too. LOSERPALOOZA II is happening on 7 September and you can get your tickets here.
We have pretty positive heads on our shoulders and have nothing but high hopes for what we can achieve in this current landscape. So far, our success has been mirrored by the amount of effort we have made. I think as long as you try your damnedest there will always be opportunity in the music industry, especially with a strong work ethic and constructive attitude.
LONG LIVE LOSERS
To find out more about Society of Losers Records and any of the bands they’re working with head over to Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and their website. You can also check out more of their bands’ music on YouTube and Soundcloud.