Naming their low-fi record label after the ultimate fashion statement, Double Denim are two London based, trend setting lads signing some seriously sick music.
Hari Ashurst and Jack Thomas began blogging about music a few years back, coz’ they both love listening to good tunes and then telling their mates about it. Roll on some, and Double Denim is the secret source behind many of today’s most breaking music blogs, a record label boasting an impressive roster of tomorrow’s best talent. Working from instinct, endlessly scouring bandcamp pages, listening diligently to every demo dropped at their door, DD are all about spotting potential and encouraging fresh material. Seapony, Christian Aids and Celestial Shores, all i-D ones to watch, have new EPs out via DD now.
i-D Online hung out with the lads to find out what to look out for and where the next best thing is lurking.
Listen to our exclusive Double Denim playlist here.
What distinguishes Double Denim from other record labels? We’re both coming at it from a really musical direction (Jack as a DJ and Hari from making music under ‘Prizes’) and I think that makes us quite artist friendly but also quite hands on in terms of musical input. Our frst release had a guest vocal from Hari for instance.
Why did you decide to name the label Double Denim? Jack had been toying with the name for a while and Double Denim was raging hard in the fashion world so we decided to forever align ourselves with one of our favourite trends and one that just doesn’t seem to die.
How do you discover the majority of the new music you sign? There’s no set pattern to it really. Seapony we found on Bandcamp and agreed the single that very week. But the next few things we have found in other ways – demos, old friends or just sheer time consuming investigation. It’s all about spotting the potential and trying to encourage that.
Who are your strongest musical influences and references? When we both listen to music together or DJ it tends to spiral into everything from R&B and Rap to Juke and more ambient stuff. Lately we’ve been enjoying Shabazz Palaces, Demdike Stare and Africa Hitech. We’re both big Talking Heads fans too.
What are some of the barriers you have encountered whilst establishing your label? It’s always hard to persuade people to even release with you at first, which is weird because I think your first couple of singles are the ones you absolutely work your hardest on, but now we have some great records to point to, people seem really eager to work with us.
What are your plans for expansion? We’re signing bands properly now and looking to do EPs and I think we’ll work on our first album project for 2012. The plan has always been to grow out of being a 7” label to something bigger.
What is the strongest band or artist you have signed to the label? We genuinely think the next two are the most exciting artists we’ve had – Celestial Shore and Outfit. Both of them send us new stuff all the time and we’re constantly loosing our minds over it. It’s been great to see Seapony and Hard Mix release albums recently too.
How do you describe the aesthetic and ethos of the label? It’s all rooted in pop and melody. Some of our releases are quite different but it comes back to those elements to tie things together in the end. We work on instinct a lot too; we don’t wait to see if something blows up, we trust that it’s good from the start.
Describe a typical day at work at the label? Usually a lot of loading web pages, sending links and blasting songs. We tend to be hyper-critical of things even at an early stage so usually if something makes it past both of us then we know it’s good. Unless we have a release imminent then it’s usually a lot of A&R. Oh and shit loads of postage.
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