I Prefer The Obscure Remix Blog

Over and Out(put)

Many months ago I wrote a review of a forthcoming Output compilation, V/A – I Hate Music. The review ran in Totally Dublin at the time, but the CD never got a release. Well, I’m glad to announce that it’s finally out today in the UK, so it probably came out last Friday in Ireland. This is quite an interesting release, as Output Recordings ceased trading over a year ago. In a rather explosive press release to Pitchfork last September, label boss and founder Trevor Jackson cited several reasons for this decision. Here’s a link to the full statement, it’s an interesting read.

I was a massive fan of a french artist signed to the label, Colder. Marc Nguyen Tan made two great albums for Output, Again (2003) and Heat (2005). I bought Again in the fabulous Road Records pretty much on the basis of the cover, and a quick skip through a few tracks on the deck. With the demise of Output, several artists and bands were left homeless. At the time I assumed Colder would be snapped up by some trendy label, but it’s been impossible to locate any information about the elusive Nguyen Tan. I know he’s a really well respected graphic designer and video producer in France, so maybe he’s returned to his day job, but if anyone knows anything about future releases, or if you are better at searching google than I am (which is very probable), do drop me a line. Here’s the video of a track off Heat, called To The Music. One of his finest moments, and best experienced on the dancefloor, VERY loud.

And for what it’s worth, here’s that review from Totally Dublin’s May issue.

Output Recordings: 1996-2007 RIP.

Various Artists – I Hate Music (Output Recordings)

Steady on Trevor! Surely this is some kind of mistake? You couldn’t possibly hate music. Look at all the evidence! For years you’ve recorded as Playgroup, and churned out remixes under the moniker Underdog. Your record label, Output Recordings, is one of the most respected and revered, fiercely independent, forward thinking UK labels of the last decade. And if that’s not enough, whatever small amount of spare time you have is spent designing award-winning record sleeves for friends and cohorts. You hate music? Rubbish!

Oh, hold on, what’s this piece of paper on the floor?

Headline: ‘Trevor Jackson’s Output Recordings Calls It Quits’.

In a statement to Pitchfork late last year, Jackson announced he was shutting down his label immediately. Why? Simple. He hates music. To quote the man, ‘Running a record label started as fun and ended up as a nightmare. I saw people I thought were my friends turn into monsters…individuals I thought were affiliates stab me in the back without even thinking twice…I never wanted to have all my passion and enthusiasm knocked out of me, but somehow it’s happened’. The loss of Output probably won’t even register on the industry’s radar. However, those of you who think they discovered artists such as Four Tet, The Rapture, LCD Soundsystem, Colder, Zongamin, Black Strobe, and MU, well you’re wrong. Jackson found them all first, and gave most of them their initial break. ‘I Hate Music’ is definitive proof, and clearly illustrates the importance and impact this label had on the last decade of independent music and movements. It is a fitting end, and worthy tribute. From jazz tinged electronica to punk funk, electro disco to new wave, garage rock to experimental techno, Output had it all, and always had it first. This compilation is virtually a snapshot of the coolest party ever thrown, and practically essential. But if you’re curious as to who some of the backstabbing sycophants and monsters may be, look no further than those who didn’t receive an invite to this final of final parties. There is one glaring omission.

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November 13, 2007 Posted by | Colder, Music, Output Recordings | 5 Comments