In the wake of the 2011 Sony warehouse fire in London that destroyed countless stockpiled records and CDs, a group of U.K. record labels has launched Beat Delete, a Kickstarter-like website designed “for the rescue of potentially lost releases” by allowing labels to gauge fan demand for reissues before actually re-pressing niche vinyl titles.
The site, which is being “powered” by Ninja Tune, will feature titles from Beggars Banquet, Domino Records and a number of other imprints, and works much like the popular crowdsourcing site. Labels post albums or singles up for vinyl reissue, and indicate how many pre-orders are necessary to trigger a repress. Customers who bid don’t pay unless that trigger is hit.
According to Beat Delete’s website:
“With music’s current climate and so many independent labels not being able to take the risk of repressing historic, niche but great records, Beat Delete is here so that you the record buyer can request music that is unavailable anywhere online or in shops and persuade the record label to bring this release back into the real world.”
Beggars’ reissue arm, Beggars Archive, is testing the waters with a re-press of Freeez’s 1983 “I.O.U.: Complete Original Mixes” 12-inch. The label is requiring 250 pre-orders at £6 apiece before re-pressing the vinyl. As of Sunday night, there were two pre-orders. Similarly, Domino is seeking 250 pre-orders to re-press the 2LP edition of The Fall’s Your Future Our Clutter.
On its blog, Beggars Archive says it also may use the site not only to reissue old material, but gauge interest in new releases as well. The label says it is looking at releasing brand-new music from short-lived, late-’70s/early-’80s 4AD post-punk act In Camera — and might use Beat Delete to determine whether there’s sufficient demand to warrant the expense.
LINK: Beat Delete
Wow, nice idea they have there. Will definitely keep an eye on that site for future efforts.