Labelinterview mit T-KODE von Stratosphera Records

Stratosphera Records
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How did you come to do what you do? When did the idea of creating the label first come out?

The first idea to create the label came from a dream that I had one night – I woke up the next day and I decided to open Stratosphera Records. I wanted to view the world from another perspective, and the label to me was the key to doing that.

Some statistics; since the label was created, how many releases, how many vinyls and how many packages/parcels have you made/sent?

Since the label has been open, I have produced two Various Artists releases on vinyl, and three digital releases. I will always press 300 copies for the vinyl releases, and almost 50 of those will go to djs for promotion before their release to test it out on the dancefloor.

Which countries do most of your buyers come from?

Most of my buyers come from London and Berlin, which I didn’t expect, but I’m really happy to have EU buyers supporting the label. I also have a lot of regular buyers in Argentina.

Which of your releases would you say you are most proud of?

So far, the release that I have been most proud of is my first on Stratosphera, ‘Opposite Reaction Vol. 1’, one of my Various Artists releases. It was the first vinyl release of the label and I was stressed about that, because it really felt like a test that I had set for myself. Luckily, the releases had an amazing response – I felt so proud of myself and I was really happy to give people a good release to listen to.

Can you describe to us what a typical day at the office means to you?

A typical day for me is full of work, whether I’m in my normal job or in music. We always need to be keeping in contact with everyone, sharing ideas and collaborating with each other in order to be productive every day.

Who’s in your team? Are you a Music Producer or DJ?

My team is composed of myself, my partner Veronica and a handful of close friends who believe in what I do. I’m a producer but also a DJ, and I feel truly alive whether I’m making or playing music. There’s nothing better in this world.

Which distribution channels do you use?

Since the label opened, I have been working with SRD Distributors from London. They are very professional, they take real care over everything and always push the release in the best ways that they or I can imagine. I also work a lot with digital platforms such as Bandcamp and Beatport.

Do you ever use YouTube? How strong or weak do you think the impact has been?

I have used YouTube for all of my releases. The impact has generally been very good; the message has reached a lot of people, so I would say that in most of the cases it has had a pretty strong impact.

Have you ever given yourself a boost by buying clicks & plays on SoundCloud?

I have never really thought to buy click or plays on SoundCloud, I think that generally speaking it’s really not so good for the music or for the artist. If your music and project are good, the people will understand that, and they will give you all the support you need.

Where do you find hungry and ambitious artists?

Almost all of the time the most hungry and ambitious artists are the new faces, and I’m part of that generation. We want show everyone for real what we have inside us, and what this music gives to us.

What impact do you think streaming with Spotify has on the economic situation of an indie label?

It really depends on how you decide to promote it, and how well the people respond to its message.

When you look for new music to sign what are some key elements and factors you are looking for, aside from it being a great track obviously

Well I’m obsessed with finding good and unexpected tracks – the trademark of my music is the groove and the roughness of the synths, whether that’s in old-school Detroit techno or in the music of newer artists, which I often play more. I like to show people that the new music can go just as hard and stay as interesting as some of the more old-school stuff, so I try to keep a good balance between the two.

How would you describe the style and vision of your label?

I started the label with a very definite vision: to give people another perspective both of music and of this world itself. And as for the style? Groovy, dark, melancholic synths accompanied by modern arrangements and solid structure.

Do you use any websites or apps to listen/ find new tracks?

Almost all the time I am looking for new waves on Bandcamp, I think it’s a really good platform where you can give direct support to artists or to the labels you’re listening to. I think it’s just a good way to find something new and interesting, and a lot of people or labels also send me their promo music to use or just to listen. I always really appreciate that, so thank you!

For all the producers out there sending in their demos via emails, what are some tips you would give them on professionally sending in their track to you?

All I would say is just explain what the message is that you want to share with the world with your music. Just tell me how and why the project began, and keep it interesting, so that anyone listening will understand, and they will listen to your music with more patience and attention.

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Thanks for having me on board, I really appreciate talking with you about me and my label.