How Most Metal Bands Fare Due To Fans Not Practising What They Preach
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RUNNING OUT OF FUEL
We have now lowered the prices of our self-titled album to 13 euro. Our 'Unveiling the Signs' split is also available for 8 euro, and both can be bought together for 18 euro only. The album is also still available as digital download from itunes.com or spotify.
The new prices will mean that we are only earning 1 or 2 euro per sold copy after deducting the wholesale price we are paying to the label and postage and packaging. But one needs to do what one needs to do.
This measure follows disappointing sales of our latest album, which means that we still owe money to our record label and that financing our next album has become problematic. We have repeatedly stated through this medium and elsewhere, that bands of our 'size' are not making any money, and definitely not a living through our music. We play it because we like it and hope to communicate with those who like what we do too, as long as the 'band bills' are paid. But unfortunately, we can't get round the fact that people are buying less and less of our albums, and we don't see an equivalent increase in merch sales (rather on the contrary) or attendance at our gigs, so that paying these 'band bills' has become problematic now.
Running a band without any money coming in, is a bit like running a car without renewing your fuel. Eventually you will run out of it, and then you won't be able to go anywhere. Every penny that comes in, goes towards financing traveling to come to your city or country to play a gig (as promoters seldom pay all traveling costs made by the band) or towards recording our next album (since the budget we get from our label is not enough to finance a recording to the standards expected from Pantheist).
We have been prepared to take the bulk of these extra costs ourselves over the previous years (and still are to some extend), but there is a limit to everything. It's particularly difficult to work hard on an album for years, have it released and promoted by a hard working, bona fide record label, get the positive reviews and comments in (most of these can be found on our site and Facebook page)….and then nothing. Not even enough sales for band and label to recover half of what they have put in in the first place.
We hate to be so blunt about finances (this is a well-known taboo topic within the underground scene), but at the same time feel that if we don't talk about it, maybe some people will never be able to understand the importance of supporting a band. Not just through talking about it, or listening to free downloads, but to actually also financially support a band, whether this means coming to a gig, buying a t-shirt or buying the band's album. Whether we like it or not (and let's face it, we don't) traveling costs money, recording costs money, everything a band does costs money. You fans are our lifeline, what sustains a band and motivates it to keep going. Without you the only thing that remains is -with a few exceptions- either amateurish DIY muddling, records made by experts in sound engineering who also happen to play in a band, or corporate sponsored mega bands. We are within that majority of bands that tries to survive in the middle of these extremes, and ask for your understanding and support so that we don't run out of fuel before our next album can be recorded, released and promoted.
We know that we are probably preaching to the converted, but hope that you will be able to spread the word in order that everyone who might care reads and understands our situation. We don't expect everyone to suddenly change attitude and start spilling money on underground bands; but we hope that raising awareness will at least help to start shifting a don't-give-a-damn mentality still pretty much present the day of today, a mentality which is self-destructive and will slowly but surely lead to the demise of a whole host of honest bands and labels that are just out there to share with you their love and passion for music.
A band/project such as The 11th Hour goes through the same ordeals. Ed Warby posted that he doesn't know how to go about recording the third The 11th Hour album. LM was financed with half the budget of the debut Burden Of Grief, if this trend continues he can spend 500 euros for the next album. Which would mean that at least 2000 euros have to come pout of his own pocket.
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| Marcel Hubregtse
Grumpy Old Fuck