Fuzz Club - in our opinion - is simply one of the greatest record labels in the world.
Founded by Casper Dee in rural Norway during the 24-hour darkness of the Arctic winter, quite a lot has happened since then. In 2018 Fuzz Club is hosting a two-day festival in The Netherlands. Taking place at the Effenaar in August, Fuzz Club Eindhoven might just be the labels ambitious project to date, with two full days of live music, DJs, visuals and a record fair.
Those playing include: The Black Angels, APTBS, Spectrum, The Limiñanas, Holy Wave, The Underground Youth, Josefin Ohrn, Ron Galo and a bunch more. Looking ahead, meanwhile, this year will also see the label launch the Fuzz Club Magazine and open a physical record store in East London.
As the build up to Fuzz Club Eindhoven continues apace, Clash sent Casper some questions to get his take on things and to find out what he is most looking forward to from his trip to Eindhoven.
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What have been some of your greatest joys in seeing the label develop?
What brings me the most joy has been seeing this idea that I had evolve into something genuinely meaningful for people. And knowing that people are coming from every corner of the world (35 countries last time I checked) to our festival in the Netherlands is also pretty damn cool. The world we live in is increasingly divided at the moment so to think that there’s that many nationalities set to attend the festival is crazy and just goes to show the power of music in bringing people together.
And what have been some of the biggest challenges?
If you are passionate about music it’s probably easy to romanticise running a label. But to be honest, running an independent label is bloody hard work. It’s really rewarding to find great new bands and release records that you think are some of the best you’ve ever heard. That’s what keeps us going and led us to start the label in the first place. But the fact is, that’s a tiny part of the job.
At the end of the day you’re running a business. And not only that, you are running a business in an industry that has been on it’s knees for years. The biggest challenges for me, and probably for everyone running a small label, is that you have to learn and do everything yourself. From finding bands to all the fun stuff like bookkeeping and VAT returns.
If a potential listener was new to the roster, where would you send them first?
Our roster has become quite big and diverse over the years so it’s hard to pick out just one band. I think The Reverb Conspiracy compilation series would be a good place to start.
We view those compilations as our attempt to take a snapshot of all the amazing music out there and document it for the history books so that’s probably be the best intro to Fuzz Club and what we’re all about.
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Looking ahead to Fuzz Club Eindhoven at the end of August, what led you to want to put on a festival?
I’ve always wanted to do a special event where we would get as many of the bands that we’ve worked with under one roof. It’s a pretty special time now as I don’t think there has ever been so many good bands around. But nothing lasts forever, bands break up and people move on, so I wanted to capture the moment while it’s still there.
Obviously, all the bands on the bill will be close to your heart, but are there any that those attending simply can’t afford to miss?
That is a really hard question. I wouldn’t miss anyone to be honest. But A Place To Bury Strangers is a must-see. They are one of, if not the best live band on the planet. If APTBS is too violent for you then The Underground Youth always deliver an amazing show. Last year two of the best gigs I saw was New Candys and JuJu so I definitely wouldnt miss them either. If you like your music a bit darker then you can't go wrong with 10000 Russos, Sonic Jesus or The Oscillation.
But I think we have something for everyone. Well, maybe not everyone, but if you’re into post punk, neo-psychedelia, industrial, krautrock, experimental pop, garage or straight up rock n roll then we should have you covered.
What do you hope the festival will achieve?
For us and for the people that are travelling from every corner of the world, this festival is a big celebration. Though it’s been bloody hard work, I’m pretty proud of what we have achieved in just over five years. Fuzz Club Eindhoven is all about celebrating the scene around us and the people that have helped make it all happen. Ultimately, our main goal is for the people that are attending to have the time of their life and find some a few new favourite bands.
Obviously, as a company, I also hope that we can introduce the label and some of our smaller bands to a new audience as well, as record sales are what keeps this operation alive at the end of the day.
What can we look forward to from Fuzz Club in the rest of the year and beyond?
We have lots of great releases lined up including new albums from The Oscillation, Medicine Boy and Throw Down Bones plus a few Fuzz Club Sessions that we’ve been saving. We’ve just released the first issue of the printed Fuzz Club Magazine and hope to get the second issue out before the end of the year. And last but not least we’ll be opening a pop-up shop in East-London next month, we’ll have more news on that very soon.
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Fuzz Club Eindhoven takes place between August 24th - 25th. For more information on the festival, and Fuzz Club in general, visit: http://fuzzclub.com/
Words: Haydon Spenceley
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