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Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Spotlight on ALTERCAT Records

Brothers and sisters, friends and foes, today we put the spotlight on a young and very promising german label named ALTERCAT.

Altercat has released two quite fantastic vinyl records so far.

1) TREE – TREE (ALT002) Debut album by outstanding psych outfit from Israel — TREE. The quartet came to life in 2005, as four young musicians gathered up from the Israeli country side, growing up in a Kibbutz, TREE started it’s way as a mostly jam based band, gathering more original materials and still holding to the that spirit, Thus presenting the group you’ll hear & see today.

TREE has set a reputation of never playing the same show twice, with their ever-growing circle of followers attending to every performance, the crowd knows to expect the unexpected. The LP first pressing is limited to 600 hand-numbered copies, with an amazing triple-foldout poster cover, with removable OBI as part of the artwork

2) The Bogeymen – Introducing… (ALT003) Reissue of cult album from 1994, originally released on CD only, now available on vinyl for the first time. 12 slices of raw garage and Rhythm&Blues, totally english-sounding — these frenchmen knew what they were doing!! A constant kick of adrenaline up there with the Creeps, the Cynics or the Fuzztones and all those that built up the 60s revival scene back in the day.

Altercat brings you the long overdue vinyl version of the album. And the good news is that the audio has been professionally restored, correcting whatever catastrophe happened during the original mix, which means you can finally listen to the bass for the first time ever. The album is limited to 600 copies with artwork faithful to the original CD issue, with informative insert displaying the story of the band and some rare pictures.

Here is a little chat yours truly had with Sergi, the mastermind behind this uprising label:

1° First things first, when did you start the label? DiD this idea came to you one day 
out of the blue or is this something you have given much thought for a very long time?

The label started off a few months ago. I´ve had an intense relationship with music for 
many years, organising concerts, DJing, collecting records, also doing some independent 
releases, and I've known lots of people involved in the business for a long time, labels, 
record dealers and so on. So the idea of starting an own label and leaving behind a 
witness of this relationship with the music world came quite naturally. I had just 
postponed it for too long!

2° Is this something you do on your own or in partnership with other people?

I do it mainly on my own, but of course there's a number of people involved in the whole 
process, including the musicians themselves, graphic artists, sound engineer, distributors and so on. I'd like to see each release as the result of work within an extended team, even if I'm the one carrying the initiative. 

3° So far you released one band from Israel and one from France. Did you get in touch 
with the bands or did they get in touch with you?

I contacted the artists and suggested the idea. I had heard TREE when they released their 
first demo, and then saw them live and realised they really SHOULD have a vinyl release 
so their music reaches a wider audience. And I had the original Bogeymen CD in my teenage 
years, and loved it. I mean it. I must have heard it 20.000 times, and every single 
person I played it too loved it also. I had actually looked for the vinyl LP of that 
album for some time, until somebody told me it was only released on CD, haha! When I 
started thinking of having my own label, I had the idea of releasing this on vinyl -- I 
wasn't sure if it would attract many customers, but at least I'd make a teenage dream 
come true. As it turns out, many people remember the Bogeymen and are very glad to see 
this released on vinyl after so many years. It's very gratifying to do a work that is 
appreciated by so many people. 

4° Regarding more specifically the Bogeymen, it is my understanding that the original 
masters could not be found anymore. How did you work to improve the sound?

Indeed, the original masters are lost in time. Neither Laurent Bauer, band leader who 
recorded the album in his own bedroom, nor Stephane Robert, owner of Dig! Records who 
originally released the CD, know about the whereabouts of the tapes. To restore the 
sound, we had to work with the audio from the CD... it was meticulously processed by 
Mischka Wilke from Kozmic Sound, an analog Studio in Berlin. He spent many hours trying 
to rescue the bass that was lost when mastering for the CD back in the day, and finally 
prepared several release candidates for us to choose from. We tried to select the version 
that we believe is closer to the sound the band originally looked for. I think that 
Mischka did an excellent job, considering the little material he had to start with. I'm 
really happy with the sound of the album, and I think it sounds glorious compared to the 
original CD. 

5° Will you only release vinyl records or do you keep an open mind for cds, cassettes, 

We already give a Digital Download version for free with every album. Vinyl is our 
favourite format, and I seriously doubt we will ever turn to CD or Cassettes, or any 
other format. But hey, we're open to everything -- who knows what future might bring!

6° exclusively for the viewers of this blog can you unveil what will be the next thing to 
be released on your label?

We are working on obtaining the rights for several reissues, that will take us in new 
exciting musical paths, but I prefer not to give many details until the deals are firmly 
agreed on. However, I can anticipate that in early March what should have been our first 
release will be finally ready. It's been delayed for some time due to issues with the 
cover... Afrodyssey Orchestra are an amazing new band from Greece, who play Afro-Jazz-
Funk, blending elements from many styles with great musicianship and giving the genre a 
real twist. PURE ANALOG DANCE MUSIC. I've seen a club packed with nearly 300 people and 
every single person in that room was dancing to Afrodyssey Orchestra, from the people in 
the audience to the doorman. And myself. We're so proud to be releasing their first 

Purchase these 2 wonderful records HERE

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