Best Record Label - 2011
The Internet is killing the music industry. And it's total suicide to start a record label in 2011. So why not just say, "Screw it," preempt the inevitably shitty sales, forget making money, and put out an entire collection of uncompromisingly noncommercial stuff just for the thrill of building your own little scene atop the ruins of a dead system? Well, that's exactly what local artist Jay Hines did when he launched his latest enterprise, Augurari, a DIY project described on the official website as "a nonprofit organization" that "offers a catalog of limited-edition sound works in various media formats," all executed by visual artists who happen to sideline as musicians. So far, Augurari's output totals five cassettes. And the most recent is a split release from distortion-happy duo Viking Funeral (Juan Gonzalez and Carlos Ascurra) and no-wave threesome Holly Hunt (Beatriz Monteavaro, Gavin Perry, and Nick Klein), while the rest of the back catalog includes tapes from Siren Cult, Daniel Newman, and Charles Dubé, plus Hines himself. To keep it simple, Augurari is all about arty noise. But if you're wondering specifically what "uncompromisingly noncommercial" sounds like, simply listen to one of the tracks off Hines's cassette, Diane Ream/Nags Head: It's literally the sound of a belt sander destroying a microphone.