What could have been another boring day at the bar instead ended in a rehearsal studio. The magic did its work and BOOM! Catisfaction was born. Gnarly but pop, luminous yet spooky, this band is definitely a savoury treat. We had the pleasure to distribute their self-titled EP, released in 2019, and are thrilled to present their newest album Kill 'Em All.
We sat down with the band and their label, Destructure, this week to gain insight into how they run their independent label, the process of printing vinyl with the current state of the industry, and the inspirations and themes behind their new album. Cats love this!
Can you briefly introduce yourself as a label and the band Catisfaction?
Destructure is a label started 20 years ago and it is focused on the French DIY/political punk scene. The 89th release (Bombardement's first full length) will be out in one or two months. Most bands are very close friends and we would not release a band record if we didn't know at least one member personally. It's definitely a family affair, and lots of band members (including myself) are playing in two, three or four bands simultaneously, trust me our scene has a family tree that would make you feel seasick. :)
This community feeling is essential to provide us with the energy we need to keep running the label. This is the reason why Catisfaction fits our catalogue perfectly: on top of being a great band with awesome songs, all three members are also in other bands that already released their records with Destructure. You should definitely check out Bitpart, Mary Bell, Better Off Dead, Going Away Party, and of course, their other bands not released by us, like Oh No It's Diva, Neuf Volts, Taenia, just to name a few.
Can you tell us something more about Kill 'Em All?
Right after Catisfaction released their demo I told them I wanted to release an album because they are close friends and I love all the energy and passion they put in every project they are in. I have been quite involved in the making of the album since I mixed it and I also did most of the sleeve art/layout. This is a great album and I would like to let Victoria (guitar/vocals) tell us more about its making and content:
«We started writing the songs for Kill 'Em All right after we recorded our demo in the summer of 2019, so they are definitely a continuation of it. Dark and even angry songs that convey a certain hatred or feeling of injustice towards patriarchy, and the injunctions we fall under. Still, we want to stay on the spectrum of positivity, hope, struggle and empowerment. In summary, it's a rather dark and gnarling album, but we hope that it will still bring you a glimmer of hope or the courage to fight for being whoever you want to be.»
You decided to make the release available as vinyl, including a black and white marble limited edition version. How do you feel about the future of the vinyl industry?
To be really honest I am not really into colour vinyl. And I hate that lots of labels are transforming the vinyl format into a rare and collectable thing. I think music should be available and affordable in any form, this is actually the reason why we choose to have songs distributed digitally.
I love sober, classic and classy black vinyl, but I respect that some vinyl music fanatics are not sharing that opinion. I also know that lots of people following us love to support the band and label by ordering to our store directly, so when bands are into it we try to show our gratitude by offering a colour option that the person can choose. I proposed the band to do a black and white marble vinyl to match the cover art because colour matching with cover is definitely non-negotiable!! I hate crazy weird colour vinyl, on top of being ugly most of the time they sound terribly bad.
Since I work as a vinyl broker, I often speak with lots of record labels and the general feelings at the moment are boredom and uncertainty. The punk scene has always been very attached to the vinyl format and it is harder and harder to project yourself in the future and plan anything when vinyl pressing plants are too busy with longer delays and when manufacturing costs keep increasing. On the one hand, vinyl sales are quite good at the moment but on the other hand, you have to wait for months before getting your record orders with higher and higher prices. I hear some labels want to stop their activity which is very sad, but I do understand them, I share their concern and do feel the same. This year is gonna be another tough one in the vinyl pressing industry with more shortages. The last few years have taught us that it's impossible to predict the future, even in the short term, so I guess we have to be patient and find new ways to deal with all this frustration and keep supporting exciting bands.
Is the fact that the label was born in Normandy playing any role in your approach to music?
The label used to be based in Caen, Normandy, where I lived for about 15 years; it has helped forge its primary identity, the scene was very exciting in the early 2000s with strong touring bands and exciting shows, but we are not there anymore. Sylvain who has been involved with the label for more than 10 years, is in Cherbourg and I moved to Paris a few years ago. The location is important because it changes your network of friends and makes it possible to work with new people, but anyway the french punk community is a quite small network. Most bands feature people that I have known for 10, 15 or 20 years but live hours away from us, and we regularly release records from bands based everywhere in France from Brest to Lyon, from Lille to Bordeaux...
What are your plans for 2022?
Each year Sylvain and I tell each other we should reduce the pace and release fewer records but we are lucky to be surrounded by creative friends in fantastic bands so I guess this year is gonna be another busy one. Next in line is Bombardement's album to be released in March, then sometime this spring there will be Bleakness' second album and the long-awaited first album by Syndrome 81. The rest of the year is still unclear, the future will tell us!
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