Blindead Productions in Sweden has been a serious supporter of punk, and continues to distro the best releases throughout Europe. You may know Krogh from SEX DWARF tours, Distortion Faith zine, his label, or maybe you had a beer with him at the last Varning from Montreal fest. Here is Krogh of Blindead Productions…
What is Blindead Productions? Is it just you who does it?
Yeah, it’s just me. There was a period somewhere around 2002 when we tried to be two people, but it didn’t really work out. Not because we had any problems, it just didn’t last too long. So, with the exception of one year, it’s been me running the show since 1997.
Blindead Productions is a label dedicated to the music I love — hardcore punk. Vinyl mostly, and some messing around with tapes lately, but the main focus is vinyl. Would be fun to do some sort of book sometime though.
What does “Blindead” mean?
Well, the initial meaning or idea behind it was that we’re already dead, we just don’t know it as the system won’t let us see it. You know, keep us in line, feed the machine, etc., etc. Then it hit me that MISERY has their song “Blindead,” which is an excellent song, and so I rather lie and say it’s an homage to that song. The idea I guess is the same, as the theme of that song isn’t too far off from the idea I had behind the name.
Tell us about Distortion Faith.
This is the zine I do together with Jocke from D-takt & Råpunk. Björn from SMRT Records was also involved in the first five issues but had to leave because of other commitments and lack of time. So far we’ve done six issues and the plan was to have a seventh out in January. That won’t happen because none of us have had the time, but the zine will return sometime this spring, I will make sure of that.
I love doing this zine as I’ve allowed myself not to care too much. Of course I want it to be good, but while in earlier zines I have set up “rules,” I now don’t care if an interview is three questions long or 30, as long as it has at least some content. I promised myself not to do any reviews, but I’ve ended up doing a few anyway and have a few more lined up, but it will not be a recurring thing — done that to death earlier and I pretty much hate it at this point.
What was ALP tapes? How many different names have you had? Were you a distro or a label first?
ALP Tapes was the very first thing, back in 1997. It started out as something that was supposed to be the label for my band’s demo. The band never recorded anything and I soon realized I’d rather be a label than a musician, so the name stuck for a while and I released ten tapes (nine home copies and one pro printed). Towards the end of ALP Tapes I also had the record label Resist the System, where I released the first CROSSING CHAOS 7” in 2000.
It was when I merged the two that Blindead Productions was born, in 2002. It started out as a label, but very soon became a distro as well — trading tapes and then later on vinyls and some CDs.
Where do you get your records pressed and tapes made? Who do you recommend in Europe?
The Distortion Faith tape was done in England somewhere, Jocke had the contact and I can’t remember. I took care of printing the covers. As for vinyl, I’ve mostly used GZ, but for the WARCOLLAPSE 12” I went with Flight 13 and I will go with them again for the upcoming KRONOFOGDEN LP. I also tried out Mobineko for the HUMAN POWER 7” but I wasn’t very happy with them. Cheap, but not too good. That’s the only place I wouldn’t recommend, other than that I’ve been happy with both GZ and Flight 13.
Where are you in Sweden and what is the scene like? Any bands we should keep an eye on?
I live in Arvika, a small town where absolutely nothing happens. It’s very close to the Norwegian border and I guess Oslo is the closest big town, but I’d rather go to Stockholm to hang out and watch bands.
What was your most popular release?
Hmm, I don’t know. The Distortion Faith comp tape sold out extremely fast, but we only did 250 copies of that one. I guess the KRONOFOGDEN 7” went over really well, at least here in Sweden, but also abroad. I guess some others have been pressed in more copies, but also with more labels, so…
What are your current projects?
I’ve been putting together the cover for the KRONOFOGDEN LP and making sure Lenny’s drawings fit the sleeve template, and the next step is to finish the insert. Got the mastered tracks just the other day and it’s gonna be a fucking great record! Other than that, I’m still trading and selling the latest release, the INFEKZIOA 7″, to as many places as possible.
Why are zines, tapes, labels, and distros important to punk?
Because they’re easy to do? I mean, you can spend a lot of money printing a zine, but you can also find a cheap printer or copy it yourself. If you have the will to do a zine you can. The same goes for tapes — you can pretty much do everything in your own living room, or go more “professional.” It’s up to you. Labels are less important, I guess, as bands can take care of this themselves, but I’m glad people still want me to put out their records. Distros are important to help keep prices at a decent level and a place where lesser-known bands can get their stuff distributed as well. Keeping prices low is getting harder and harder though.
How did you get into punk and what makes you stay?
I guess I got into the softer style of punk through more mainstream channels and early bands for me were DIA PSALMA, ASTA KASK and EBBA GRÖN. With MOB 47, NO SECURITY and SKITSYSTEM I knew I was hooked for life. EBBA GRÖN, MOB 47 and NO SECURITY are still today, 17–18 years later, three of the best bands I know. What really made me stay is that all of a sudden I was involved in the music I loved, not just a fan — that was really powerful for me.
How can we stay up to date on your releases and projects?
The best way is to check out the website at www.blindeadproductions.com, where I keep info up to date. If you want to go through social medias or newsletters or whatever, you’ll find the info on that there as well. There’s also blindeadproductions.bandcamp.com, where you can check out at least ten full releases, and soon we’ll add the full INFEKZIOA 7″ there, plus a few from the upcoming KRONOFOGDEN LP.