DEAR ALL. I wish to bring to light the announcement that we, Mystery Jets, have indeed left our previous contract with 679 recordings. We worked with some talented and inspiring people, enjoyed our time there and parted on an amicable note. But ultimately what occurred was a catch 22 situation with a major label. When we first signed, 679 was its own entity. They occupied a beautiful office in a leafy backstreet in Camden town, and we shared a pretty fierce roster with the likes of the Futureheads, Death from above and The Streets. Fast forward four years, and the label occupies nothing more than a six foot-high metal storage cabinet on the third floor of the Atlantic offices in High Street Kengington. And all we share is a shelf with some dusty old Kano promo cds.
John Lennon once famously said that he liked to imagine domestic objects that he could buy with the profits made from his songs, so as to give himself motivation to keep writing. It was once even (allegedly) said that he and Paul wrote 'Eight Days A Week' specifically so that John would be able to afford an extension to his house. "Sometimes we sat down and said 'right! Today we're going to write a swimming pool'."
Comparatively, record sales today aren't a scrape on what they were in the Beatles' day. Therefore, I think I can justify saying that in the eyes of a major label like Atlantic, Mystery Jets (and many of our contemporaries who have encountered similar obstacles, and who I have listed below) were effectively 'writing kebabs'.
Luckily I like Good Shoes.
And I like The Futureheads.
And I like The Horrors.
And I like Patrick Wolf.
And I also like kebabs.
On another note, it is with utter joy and excitement that I would like to announce our new home- Rough Trade Records.
We signed last week and took a photo to mark the occasion too.
Rough Trade records is a whole world unto itself. In the past thirty years it has been home to the likes of the Cure, the Smiths, the Strokes, the Libertines and the Arcade fire. And that's only scraping the surface. It also even more importantly carved the way for many of the independent labels we love and buy records from today. So I think its more than fair to say we are looking forward to what lies in front of us in the year ahead.
Photograph by Russ Tannen
Aside from the final dates in February in the UK and the States, our sights are firmly set on making the third record. Demos are being thrown around like beach balls, as are, less thrillingly, phrases like 'driving music!' and ' French new wave soundtracks!'. I can only speak for myself when I say there's a lot of Springsteen, Cars and late-police being played out round here. That said, I will however, never allow a Sting CD in this house.
For those of you who are not familiar with the heritage of Rough Trade, let wonder-kid Jeff Lewis make the introduction:
To Paraphrase Jeff himself -
"Don't let the record label take you out to lunch, every sip of soup's gonna be recouped"
Read what founder Jeff Travis had to say himself on rough trade's website here: