Primordial Sounds’ label-ready learning curve

Cellars by Starlight
By LIZ PELLY  |  February 20, 2013

Noah Bond's Allston apartment looks like an antique shop. When I visit on a gray Tuesday afternoon to talk about his young record label pRIMORDIAL sOUNDS — which he runs with CreaturoS singer/guitarist Spenser Gralla — Bond is spinning an old Everly Brothers LP on his antique record player, sipping tea in his living room. "Want to see the pRIMORDIAL sOUNDS catalog?" Bond asks, pulling a single brown cardboard box out of his closet. Inside are copies of the label's few small-run releases: tapes by the Beat Awfuls, CreaturoS, and Hands and Knees, plus a Fedavees 7-inch, and some posters.

pRIMORDIAL is barely a year old, but anyone tuned into underground and garage-rock music communities in Boston has likely seen one of these tapes or attended one of their monthly nights at Central Square's Middlesex Lounge. In a world where indie labels have less and less personality, pRIMORDIAL maintains the tradition of record labels as more than just manufacturers of releases, but as part of a community of local artists and fans. "Stuff started happening almost by accident," Bond explains. "I started a pRIMORDIAL sOUNDS as a blog and didn't really tell anyone about it."

Those first Blogspot entries were in 2009. A year later, the Middlesex suggested turning the blog into a recurring monthly show. In 2011, Dave Cave from Beat Awfuls and Viva Viva expressed interest in releasing a tape with pRIMORDIAL sOUNDS as its label. "From there it was a process of making mistakes and learning from that, which is still happening," says Bond, laughing.

Next up for pRIMORDIAL are a Dawn Fauna tape (a solo project from Anna of Quilt), as well as a Needy Visions record and "probably another CreaturoS tape at some point." "We're also talking to a lot of our friends who are artists and writers," says Gralla. "It would be cool to release some limited-edition art books or zines."

A quick chat with the pRIMORDIAL dudes makes it clear how indebted to the local community they are. "I was just thinking today about how Mike Caulo [of Sippy Cup Everything] helped me to learn a lot of stuff for the Hands and Knees tape," says Bond. "Sometimes I'll go into Weirdo Records and pick Angela [Sawyer's] brain." Bond also points to other generous folks in the community, like local booker Johnny Allen and Sam Potrykus of the Boston Compass.

Adds Gralla: "Any tactics or skills we implement we've learned from playing and tours with past bands. Learning how it works along the way. . . Playing music in Boston for as long as we have, we've just made so many friends, and so when we started doing this, we almost didn't need to think about it too much."


Related: Out: Fedavees help launch the pRIMORIAL sOUNDS label, Boston experiences an indie-label resurgence, Out: Chasing the ghost of punk with the Ducky Boys, More more >
  Topics: Music Features , music features, tapes, pRIMORDIAL SOUNDS,  More more >
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