G’day, I’m James Tidswell. I play guitar in Violent Soho and I just started a label called Domestic La La Records. The name itself comes from a Violent Soho song, and I’m using it as a record label name because it is “Domestic” as in Australia, and “La La” as in music.
In the beginning I actually just wanted to manage Violent Soho or put out their record, but they ended up needing a guitarist so I went with that instead. I sold my first car to put out the first Violent Soho EP Pigs and TV. Then I resigned from a job to get a severance package to put money in towards the We Don’t Belong Here album. I was lucky enough that Soho ended up getting a big record deal back in the day through Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth / Ecstatic Peace), and that was where I stopped pursuing that side and started enjoying just playing in the band. In that time, I learnt a lot about how it is to be a band, and it allowed me to have the confidence going in to do Domestic La La the right way. Now I’ve teamed up with my mates at UNIFIED Music Group to make the label a reality.
The idea behind Domestic La La is to allow bands to be on a label with someone who is sympathising with the artist themselves, and the struggle with having a vision and wanting to do something that doesn’t fit into the everyday mould that record labels operate within. I’m lucky enough to have been involved in the music industry – in all different levels and aspects – for over 14 years. I say lucky because although at times it was difficult and frustrating, I now know why I had to go through all of that. It’s left me with a complete and total understanding of everything a band can go through and I can always see from their perspective. Sometimes being in a band can feel like the people on the other side don’t truly understand why certain things are so important to you, or why you have to do things a certain way, even if it is more work.
To celebrate the label I’m doing this 7” subscription called the Domestic La La Record Club, where you put two bands together and release a double A-side. The goal is to have 10 each year. The idea is to give people a way of discovering new bands – some up and coming, some already established and some you’ve never heard of. It will be delivered to your door, and you don’t have to go looking for new music if you don’t want to. The first one will be West Thebarton “Ivan” / STORK “Dark Shadows”. Pre-order it here
One of the bands we’ve signed to the label is West Thebarton. I was across them from a pretty early stage. One day, I was at home listening to triple j and “Moving Out” came on the radio. I was so amped by it, that I didn’t know how to listen to the song properly because it just had me wanting to move. I don’t exercise, but I drove straight to a gym and put the song on repeat and just started running on a treadmill. I ran six kms and I haven’t run since. I was going to take things really slow with the label, as in just build it over three to five years, but I decided why not ramp it up and throw my hat in the ring and be like, “Look, I’m gonna do a label. I’ve never really done this before, but why not now’s the time!’ Much to my surprise, really, they said yes and now we’re on. Check out their new single “Bible Camp”.
We’ve also signed Dear Seattle. A friend sent me Dear Seattle when there was just one song out from the self-titled EP and on the first listen, my jaw dropped. I was sitting by myself at my dining room table, and I put it on repeat. It was right before I was going out, so it was like my own personal pre-drinks party. I was so amped up that I cancelled my Uber and found their email address straight away. I fell in love instantly, and I ended up being late to the dinner I was going to. I’ve been to every show since, I’m just smitten. Listen to their new single “The Things You Do” here. And, for the record, I don’t think they sound like Violent Soho at all.