Q Magazine

Guest Column – The Ace Of Clubs! Too Pure celebrate their 100th single release

Guest Column – The Ace Of Clubs! Too Pure celebrate their 100th single release
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Too Pure‘s Singles Club – the remaining wing of the legendary indie label – is celebrates 100 releases this month with a solo release from Paul Draper, while an album celebrating their century, Pay No Attention, is being issued for Record Store Day (16 April). Paul Riddlesworth who runs Too Pure, explains why it’s been good to club together…

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What’s the Too Pure Singles Club you say? How very dare you! Well, for those not initiated to the wonderful world of The Too Pure Singles Club, we’re primarily a subscription label. We release a seven-inch single every month from someone new and we came in to being eight years ago when our parent label, the legendary indie Too Pure (I don’t think its too swell-headed to say that as its rich history of artists including PJ Harvey, Th Faith Healers, Mouse On Mars, Electrelane, Stereolab, Mclusky is bloody good) wanted to start a singles club for the hell of it. Not long later though, they stopped trading so we were left to keep their torch burning. No pressure there then…

I unfortunately have the business acumen of a shoe, so there’s absolutely no plan to what we do, just to put out whatever we like and to not lose our shirts. We’re not part of any A&R bunfighting either (although ones does love buns) it’s as simple as if we like the music and the band and they like me then they’re in. And since we have religiously released a brand new 7” every month for the past eight years, we’ve fallen in love with a lot of new artists and discovered that out there, there is some serious talent. A lot might not find their way through the anodyne media machine but trust us, they’re there.

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We’re a very artist friendly label as more often than not this will be their first experience of the music industry and we want to make it as pleasant as we possibly can. The bands get free reign over the design of their records. Clear, coloured vinyl, gatefold sleeve, you got it… we also get all the tracks mastered at the ever wonderful Abbey Road, which the bands are always welcome to attend. The bands get complete digital rights too, the lucky swines..

It’s not like we need more work or that vinyl manufacture isn’t a fucking nightmare sometimes. In seriousness, it’s a labour of love yes but it’s really important to us and our lovely subscribers that every record is different from the next.

As we’re now closing in on our 100th release (100 RELEASES! Sweet Jesus and Marychain how the hell did we get here?!), we’re flattered to have been asked by Q to reflect on the highs and lows…

I took over the reigns in the label’s early days, having somehow managed to jam my foot firmly in the proverbial door. My initiation was looking after Foot Village and Die!Die!Die!, I came out relatively unscathed although my liver may tell a different story (one that may start off “Once upon a time in Jägermeister” and end with a bollocking from my wife).

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The silver lining to that is that from that day on, I took on the Too Pure mantle. Being a one man operation, its been a lot of hard work and dedication to the cause over the years. So much so my co drones nick named it the Too Pure Shingles Club.. Releasing a 7″ a month isn’t easy but It’s been A LOT of fun along the long and rickety road to 100 releases, wIth many highlights.

I’ve had the privilege of putting out singles by likes of Dead Skeletons, Hookworms, Pulled Apart By Horses, Jeff The Brotherhood, DZ Deathrays, Fear Of Men, Menace Beach, Seize The Chair and many, many more. Seeing them all go from strength to strength is fucking amazing and gives me feel a sense of pride to have been there for them. Watching Pulled Apart By Horses open the main stage at Reading was an incredible feeling, the night I drank a lit candle thinking it was a shot, less so… or the time I was taken I got a little over excited and was taken home shirtless, by my long suffering other half before We are animal even came on stage.. a formidable low…

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It’s incredible to have made it to 100 releases and I’m incredibly excited that the debut single from ex-Mansun legend Paul Draper (out on 29 April) is to be our 100th release. That’s not all, this Record Store Day we’re going to put out Pay No Attention, a compilation LP of some of our subscribers favourite tracks from throughout the years… not a dud on there … right….

Paul Riddlesworth@Toopuresingles

For more head to Toopure.com


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