Please present your label, when and where was it started, who is involved in its activities and what genres are promoted by it.
Hypnotic Dirge Records is a project which I began in late 2008. We aim to release innovative and experimental music within the black metal, doom metal, and post-rock genres among others. Initially, when HDR began it was also focused on releasing a lot more ambient and atmospheric black metal stuff but I think the label has grown a lot since the beginning. I think the releases coming up in the summer of 2012 and early 2013 will really define what the label aims to release much better than some of the early releases!
Tell us a few words on each or the most important releases of your label, and which of them are still available for purchase.
Almost all of the HDR releases are still available to order. The first few releases are sold out as they were limited CD-r releases, but all of the important and more professional releases are still available. I would have to say that the albums which have been released that define the label the best are perhaps netra's Mélancolie urbaine, Ekove Efrits' Conceptual Horizon, and stroszek's sound graveyard bound, as all three seem to really capture the innovative and experimental side that I want Hypnotic Dirge to be known for. Speaking more broadly though, (and as cliche as it may sound) all of the HDR releases are important to me.
What are the most important features you look for in a band that is or has the chance to be signed on your label?
I'm always looking for new or established bands and projects that fit into the sound that Hypnotic Dirge aims to release. Loosely within the genres of black metal, doom metal, post-rock, acoustic, or experimental music but I am not very picky about the genre itself. I mostly care about the "essence" of a project. I care much more about whether the musician is a real artist, and is serious about their project. Of course, a professional attitude is important as well, but by that, I definitely do not mean a "rock star" attitude, as that is something that I despise. You can't make any unrealistic demands or expect to get rich or make a living playing black metal or doom.
How can a band get in touch with you? What should bands know before submitting their promos for your consideration?
Bands can get in touch by email. The email address is easily found in the contact section of the Hypnotic Dirge website. Bands should however know that due to the confines of being an underground label, and only being able to release a certain amount of releases per year that I'm really not in a position to accept every band which I think sounds good. There are some months where I get more demo submissions than orders, so hopefully that makes people understand the situation at least. That being said, don't hesistate to send your demos anyway because I'd hate to miss out on a great project simply because they were unsure of whether it was worth it to send a demo to HDR. I also really encourage people to learn at least a little bit about the label before sending a demo submission. To me, nothing represents lazyness more than bands who will send mass emails to tons of labels asking for a deal without knowing anything about the labels. I think artists
What's the most important thing in the relationship between you and your bands? What is your label offering to its bands?
Trust, co-operation, and friendship.
I offer bands and projects a reliable label, no lies, bullshit, or false promises, comprehensive distribution and good promotion.
Is there anything you planned with your label and has not yet been completed?
There are always many plans for the future. In the ideal world I'd like to release 10-15 releases per year and still give each release its proper attention. Right now, mostly due to finances I'm only able to release 4-6 albums per year and it's sometimes a bit disapointing when you want to release new albums more often, and at a faster pace. I don't have anything too earth shattering planned though, basically to keep everything at a steady pace, keep releasing new and interesting music, and hopefully always keep the label improving and getting wider distribution, more promotion, and improve graphics, photography, and video aspects along the way too.
How does the future looks for your label? Any major projects you would like to share with us?
I'd like to share the next releases coming up if that's ok with you as there's lots of interesting stuff on the way! Coming out this summer on Hypnotic Dirge will be the third full-length album (and first on HDR) from a Russian three piece band called 'Epitimia' as well as another project from the musician behind Ekove Efrits, this time called 'Silent Path' and focusing more on a depressive black metal style. After those two releases, I'll be releasing the new netra album called Sørbyen which is a fantastic album, and as much as I liked the debut album 'Mélancolie Urbaine' I feel that this one is even better. It's such an interesting album, but it's also pretty hard to categorize. A quick description would be to call it a strange hybrid of black metal, blues, trip-hop, alternative rock, but the best thing would be for people to listen for themselves. Alongside, that netra album, I'll also be releasing an album from Subterranean Disposition, a one man doom metal project from Terry Vainoras, known for the bands Cryptal Darkness, Insomnius Dei, and The Eternal. These four releases will all be released in the summer of 2012.
How can anyone get in touch with you? Please list your website, webstore and/or social media links.
Sure, the best place to start would be the Hypnotic Dirge website - www.hypnoticdirgerecords.com
There's over 400 albums available to order on the website, including all of the HDR releases, and also all of the releases from the Russian doom metal label 'Solitude Productions' as HDR is an official distributor of theirs so anybody in North America looking for Solitude Prod. releases can order from HDR if they want, and receive cheaper and faster shipping while still supporting Solitude Productions.
The HDR website also has biography info for the bands on the label, streaming music, reviews, blogs, free downloads, and videos so if you're interested, check it out.
Also, we're on Facebook, Youtube, Soundcloud, and Bandcamp so if you use those websites, look us up!