Sometimes a record label comes along and just gets it. They find a groove; an aesthetic that you can lock into and engage with on a very personal, visceral level. It’s not just the music, though. Sure, the music is the reason we show up. But it’s the artwork and the vibes and the sort of muscial connective tissue that binds the artists and albums from release to release that keeps you coming back. It’s like this super cool secret club that you feel you’re a part of.
There’s a handful of record labels that I’ve followed and pretty much fallen in love with like a middle schooler at the fall dance. Labels like El Paraiso Records, Spun Out Of Control, Burning Witches Records, Azure Vista Records and Holodeck Records found their way right into my heart and head. These labels had a vibe all unto themselves. You’re compelled to buy everything they release. It felt like finding these exclusive clubs where the bouncer at the door not only knew my name, but gave me a smile and a hug at the door, rolled me a joint and gave me unlimited drink tickets as I walked inside. These labels had an aesthetic and a vibe that rolled along with every release. The artists, while individual and distinct, all locked in with each other in a very organic, natural, and artistically pleasing way.
You can now add SFI Recordings to that list.
SFI Recordings is the creation of musician and screenprint artist Andrew Crawshaw. I first heard of Andrew through his electronic project Meridian Arc. I then dived into his work with SOMAFREE INSTITUTE, Old Dark House, and then his amazing work in the new age/ambient project New Frontiers. Crawshaw saw a hole to fill artistically and aesthetically and started SFI Recordings.
So far SFI Recordings has given us New Frontiers (of)New Dimensions, Deathcount In Silicon Valley’s Vampyroteuthis Infernalis, Paul Riedl’s Ambient Mixtape Vol. 3 & 4 Old Dark House’s Welcome Home and reissues of cassette only releases from Steve Moore and Majeure(Positronic Neural Pathways and Union of Worlds, respectively). There’s actually a lot more releases, but these are the big ones and the more recent releases. I implore you to deep dive into the Meridian Arc albums and SOMFAFREE INSTITUTE releases, as well as the re-scores to Bud(Air Bud) and A Stranger In The House(Black Christmas).
So if you want to stick out your tongue and drop a little SFI LCD into your system your best bet is to put Signals // Transmissions From SFI Recordings into your brain. This is one hell of a heady sampler platter filled with what SFI Recordings has to offer, as well as what they will be offereing in the very near future. Artists like Deathcount In Silicon Valley, Steve Moore, Justin Sweatt, and New Frontiers pop up to help you float along the cosmic ridge between here and way out there. Paul Riedl, Timothy Fife, Vortexx, SOMAFREE INSTITUTE, and Norm Chambers show up for some frontal lobe re-aligning as well. Of course Majeure and Old Dark House stop in as well.
Are you looking for a new record label to obsess over? Trying to vibe with some artists on a kind of intellectual-yet-visceral level? Did 2020 get in the way of your music-listening ritual of connecting with an aesthetically pleasing home for all your music needs? Look no further and SFI Recordings. But don’t take my word for it. Put that blotter on your tongue and take the ride below. You’ll be glad you did.