Community Is Key For Sydney Label Burning Rose

Published September 14th, 2016

People are just as important as records for the label that is home to rising talent Death Bells, Muscle Memory and Publique.

Since forming in early 2016, Sydney label Burning Rose have immersed themselves in a sound that’s quite absent in Australian music. With clear influences from European avant-garde electronic underground labels such as Blackest Ever Black and Posh Isolation, the label – run by Will Canning, Maurice Santiago and Callum Van de Mortel – has released acts with post-punk and noise sound such as Death Bells, Muscle Memory and Publique.

Sound is one thing but one of the most distinguishing characteristics of Burning Rose is their decision of being a “loose collective”. Exploring different avenues for exhibiting local artists such as having a pirate radio station, the guys intend to do more than your typical ‘album release’ label by creating an interactive community for all involved.

Take a listen to a new track from Body Blush and read a chat we had with Will.

Noisey:  Why has Burning Rose decided to operate as a ‘loose collective’?
Will Canning: We feel it’s important to draw on necessity rather than an agreed upon standards for each release or a platform to create. We want to throw parties, press good records, dub good cassettes and make zines. Everything we do is always deeply rooted in so many different aspects of creativity and we couldn’t simply do it as just any normal record label. We’re really trying to establish a community of people who think the same way we do. Also we want to get people off their fucking phones.

Publique. Image: Dakota Gordon

Publique. Image: Dakota Gordon

So the idea of community is essential for the label’s existence? 

Of course. Without the community of people who like what we do and want to get involved, we’d have nothing. We want to establish a community where everyone is really involved with one another and there’s constantly ideas or music coming from it. We’re just here to present music and have shows for people who think the same way we do. That’s the end goal.

Muscle Memory. Image:  Solveig Ober

Muscle Memory. Image: Solveig Ober

Your four releases with a sound that’s quite popular in Europe but quite absent in Australia. 

 The music we’ve put out so far does fit a certain post punk sound, like the Death Bells EP and the Publique two-track but going forward, everything we’re working on is pretty eclectic but shares a close definition in aesthetic and commonality. We have a really fucking good LP coming out later this year from a 19-year-old kid who lives in suburban Los Angeles called Body Blush who’s making some really anxiety-ridden house music using a lot of hardware. A friend of mine who lives in Atascadero just made a 4-track which sounds like Eddy Current Suppression Ring and Wire. Honestly, we just want to release good music by people we know who do worthwhile things.

A defining characteristic of the label is the radio station. Why did you guys decide on that? 

We chose the radio station because it’s a really good way to have continuous content that we like and to display people in our circle who we feel have good content. We just had Morgan Wrighttrack an incredible live session for us and it’s honestly the most stirring piece of music I’ve heard all year. In the future, I’d like the get to a level where we can broadcast continually like The Lot Radio in New York. In terms of other things planned, we want a physical space in the next year so we can do workshops, have events and to teach people who might not already know how to use hardware or Ableton and producing music. Just little crash courses you know. We really want to create a space where everyone can bounce off each other, learn and work together.


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