Every day this month we're rolling out a new feature on XLR8R's Labels We Love of 2009. Whether it's the eye-catching aesthetics of Type or the model-for-the-future approach of Interdependent Media, these cut-making selections of the best in underground electronic, indie, hip-hop, and experimental imprints punch way above their weight. Feast your eyes on the features and then download many of the labels' related podcasts here.
The lowdown on new London’s mysteriously modern goth force.
In the vein of adored labels like Factory and ZE, DiscError seems to have it all: the look, the sound, the swagger, and an overwhelming fondness for black, white, and the many, many shades of grey. Formed in 2007 by recording engineer James Aparacio and graphic designer Ciaran O’Shea (notable for his work for The Horrors and These New Puritans), the London crew is notable for their aesthetic—a raven-haired, pyramid-and-pentacle goth vibe that seeps through their bands’ album design, photos, and stylish videos like a damp and irresistible fog. This isn’t all for show—their bands, from Ipso Facto with their garage-pop to the fright-night analogs of Micron 63—are substantive enough to back the style. We interrupted the pair, who were busy prepping for September’s Offset Festival, which they help organize, and asked them to tell us a little more about their elusive roster.
James: Harmonized in white and black… Perfect for us at the time.
Ciaran: Our first release, recorded in a studio off Hoxton Square. The session was plagued with problems but we got there in the end. I think the girls had played two shows, and wanted to get something together quickly—it was certainly a record that captured the moment.
James: Ear-bending stadium rock with drum machines.
Ciaran: A band that genuinely means what they say; they’re a pleasure to work with and it’s been great to see how the sound has progressed over the last year. I tried three times before I managed to see them play live, with gigs cancelled for various fights and other misdemeanors—the embodiment of rock and roll.
James: Illusive electro.
Ciaran: The last I heard of S.I.N.S. was that he was still in Spain… After having played the Benicassim festival, he was kidnapped by a group of Spanish transvestites and subjected to a life of continuous pool parties and cheap MDMA.
James: Dirty, fuzzy electro with guitars and slogans.
Ciaran: Such a powerful sound, aggressive. I put them on in the disused kitchen of an East End pub: The tiled floors got covered in booze, broken glass, and blood from cut legs, and the band played with two projectors turned onto the audience blasting strobed lines in peoples’ faces.
James: The sound of Icarus hitting the ground.
Ciaran: Recording Advert was a great experience. Hearing the disturbing noise those three polite lads get from guitars whilst locked in a serene little recording studio in a family-run, converted warehouse overlooking a still quiet canal... Tuesdays don’t get much more fun.