BMG Announces Acquisition of The End Records

In a surprise move, major label BMG has announced the acquisition of pioneering indie label The End Records.  The acquisition includes the entire back catalogue as well as future releases.  The End Records will continue to operate from its offices in New York.  Check out the press release here.

The label was started out of CEO Andreas Katsambas‘ home in Pasadena and flourished in the early years as a label that pioneered a new scene of eclectic, avant garde metal bands, including AGALLOCHWINDS, and EPOCH OF UNLIGHT.  They also made a name for themselves by becoming the trailblazer in having the best selection of underground metal and rock albums in its online shop.  One did not have to pay $30 for a copy of ARCTURUSLa Masquerade Infernale.  The now industry standard pre-release album packages with a limited edition t-shirt, CD, vinyl, and mp3s was a concept pioneered by Katsambas.

The End Records partnered with many underground European labels such as Black Mark, Osmose Productions, Music for Nations and Listenable Records to provide distribution in North America.  One could finally pick up IMMORTAL‘s At the Heart of Winter at a record store at a domestic price.

Through endless hard work, struggle, and disappointments, Katsambas kept the label alive and greatly expanded the roster to include bands of all genres.  The End Records ceased to be strictly a heavy music label.  The label that was once home to ULVER, DIR EN GREY, and VOIVOD is now home to EVERCLEAR, WANZ, and THE DANDY WARHOLS.

We congratulate Andreas Katsambas and the rest of the staff, past and present, on this milestone!

 

WINDS/AGE OF SILENCE Leader Andy Winter Launches First Music Video

After releasing his latest full length solo album Incomprehensible on The End Records in January 2013, ANDY WINTER (WINDS, AGE OF SILENCE, SCULPTURED) now returns with his first ever music video; an artistic collaboration by various talents in the realm of music, film and fashion.

Musically speaking, “Uncountably Infinite” is a stylistic departure from Andy Winter’s usual style of subdued and progressive art-rock. The sound takes on a more metallic edge with harsher and rougher tones, featuring a crunchy wall of guitars courtesy of Andy Winter himself, complimented by the vocals of Mirai Kawashima (SIGH), bass playing of Jason William Walton (AGALLOCH, SCULPTURED), drumming of Jan Axel von Blomberg AKA Hellhammer (WINDS, MAYHEM, ARCTURUS), and guitar solo by Donald Anderson (AGALLOCHSCULPTURED).

Starring in the video is actress and burlesque dancer Tristan Risk, most recently featured in the cult horror film “American Mary” by The Soska Sisters.

AGE OF SILENCE & WINDS’ Andy Winter New Solo Album Available Now

Andy Winter - IncomprehensibleKeyboardist/composer Andy Winter of WINDS and AGE OF SILENCE fame has a new solo album, Incomprehensible, which is available now via The End records.  The album features an impressive roster of guest vocalists from MADDER MORTEM, AGALLOCH, GREEN CARNATION, EDGE OF SANITY, PECCATUM, BORKNAGAR, NOVEMBERS DOOM, and WINDS.

Also appearing are Jan Axel von Blomberg aka Hellhammer (MAYHEM, WINDS), Carl August Tidemann (WINDS, ex-ARCTURUS), Øystein Moe (WINDS, ex-ULVER), Don Anderson (AGALLOCH, SCULPTURED) and Mike Young (THE DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT).

Having continued his approach of always applying a very genre-defying style, “Incomprehensible” is yet another unmistakable and unique record from Andy Winter, and one that provides a different experience altogether when compared to anything else in metal, or indeed most music.

WINDS – Prominence and Demise

It took three years to see what Norway’s WINDS have been working on but the final product exceeds all expectations. First off, WINDS have taken everything to new levels. The songs are significantly more dense, catchy, and compelling. While it’s obvious that the band are talented artists, the true exhibition of their talents and skills are on full display on Prominence and Demise. Guitar master Carl August Tidemann takes his playing to another level by reaching a perfect balance between his technical prowess with stronger, catchier guitar parts. Prominence and Demise is also their most guitar-heavy album as well as featuring plenty of acoustic guitar. Vocalist/bassist Lars Erik Si lays down his best vocal performance by far with strong vocal lines. Keyboardist Andy Winter and drumgod Hellhammer’s performances might just be the best of their respective careers. Additionally, Prominence and Demise features the notable contributions of Agnete M. Kirkevaag (MADDER MORTEM), Lars Nedland (SOLEFALD, BORKNAGAR), Dan Swano (EDGE OF SANITY), and Oystein Moe (ex-TRITONUS, ULVER). Their contributions, though still guest appearances, prove to be of high value in terms of adding new dimensions to WINDS. Highlights can be found all over Prominence and Demise with so much content and quality to digest and understand over time. WINDS have taken strong hold of their artistic destiny and produced an absolutely brilliant album. The next album should be an even bigger monster. (The End Records)

WINDS Completes Prominence and Demise

WINDS, the Norwegian band consisting of Lars E. Si, Carl August Tidemann, Jan Axel von Blomberg and Andy Winter, have completed the mixing of their fourth recording, said to be an epic masterpiece entitled Prominence and Demise.

The album features guest appearances from several musical talents including Dan Swanö, Agnete M. Kirkevaag, Lars Nedland and Øystein Moe. Travis Smith has already completed the cover layout for the album.

Prominence and Demise is the follow-up to the band’s well-received 2004 opus The Imaginary Direction of Time. A release date will be set by The End Records in the near future.