Tag Archives: Marc Riley

Thanks to everyone who helped make 2012 a special year for Fishrider Records!

Happy New Year! Unexpectedly 2012 was a strange and eventful year for Fishrider Records. Our accidental underground label became a bit more like a real one. We had a lot of help from Marc Riley at BBC 6Music and Nick Halliwell at Occultation Recordings in the UK in that. And we also had a huge amount of support from fans and customers around the world for which we are very grateful.

On January 1 2012 the only plan for Fishrider for 2012 was to release The Puddle album ‘Secret Holiday/ Victory Blues’ and try to find ways to persuade people to listen to that odd album by Opposite Sex we released late in 2011.

By the middle of the year we had released The Puddle album, and also The Shifting Sands “Feel’, a UK co-release of the Opposite Sex album (after the NZ release sold out by April), and also a co-release of a 10” mini-album ‘New Sacral’ by The Fall/ Blue Orchids founder Martin Bramah’s band Factory Star. We could not have made that up in our wildest dreams at the start of the year.

The year started with Marc Riley in January describing the Opposite Sex album as ‘absolutely brilliant’ and playing it regularly for 4 months. He revisited it in one of his pre-Christmas best-of-the-year shows a few weeks ago saying “I did say at the beginning of the year when I started playing that, that I would be very surprised if it didn’t end up in the Top 5 albums of the year for me, and it is there, it really is, it’s a great record…”

Positive reviews and more radio play in the UK, Europe, USA and here in NZ followed throughout the year with the album even making an unlikely brief appearance in the CMJ Top 200 for college/ non-commercial radio station play in North America in August. US website Popmatters even listed Opposite Sex as one of their “Best Hopes to Break Out in 2013”. All a bit weird for an accidental and unplanned album resulting from some demos recorded quickly in a Dunedin basement by a band no-one had heard of ouside of their small hometown of Gisborne.
Opposite Sex in Auckland, July 2012

The albums by The Puddle and The Shifting Sands and Factory Star were also well-received here in NZ and overseas with reviews and radio play. Wonderful videos from Jim Cooper (The Shifting Sands’ ‘Pixies’), Pat O’Neill (The Puddle’s ‘Decline to Fall’) and Dan Wagner (The Puddle’s ‘Secret Holiday’) helped to spread the word on these releases too.

Many thanks to all those who have helped – to all the songwriters, musicians, recording engineers, video makers, video editors, supporters, writers, music organisations, websites and especially to everyone who has bought an album or shared music or helped spread the word about the label and the bands – you all make what we do possible.

What do we have planned for 2013? Absolutely nothing yet. But there are a few things floating in the aether at the moment and no doubt this time next year we’ll be looking back on another busy year. Thank you for keeping the music alive and all the best for the year ahead.


UK release 23 April 2012 for Opposite Sex album

It’s 23 April 2012 and it’s finally here… the implausible UK release for the extraordinary debut album by Opposite Sex. We’re still in a bit of head-shaking shock about how this has come about and also how it happened so quickly. It’s a long story. In a way it all started last year during a discussion on the internet about the first Scritti Politti EP. This was when I first “met” Nick from Occultation Recordings in the UK – finding we had a record collection and some post-punk/ no wave favourites in common. I think this was even before the Opposite Sex album was released in NZ.

Fast-forward to mid-January 2012 and Marc Riley starts playing the album on his 6 Music show in the UK. He adores it, considers it to be “brilliant” and, just as importantly, so do his listeners. They start a run on the album mail-order from NZ, resulting in the NZ LP pressing heading for being sold out very quickly.

In late February I begin thinking about a repressing. The UK seems to make sense. But how? I ask Nick if he’d mind looking after some boxes of Fishrider vinyl if I get it repressed in the UK. He listens to the album, loves what he hears, and goes one better by offering to organise the pressing for me. The details are sorted out over several early morning (for him)/ late night (for me) Skype video calls. The team at Vinyl 180 and Weatherbox who help facilitate the pressing for him also love the album and they help find a distributor…

And here we are, on 23 April 2012, with a UK release and retail distribution. Two tiny independent labels, both run by crazy-mad enthusiasts, linking hands across the oceans via the internet to bring this “truly pure and slightly feral” album to the UK (and Europe).

Meanwhile Opposite Sex
– Lucy, Tim & Fergus – are a bit bemused by all of this. They are busy, totally focussed on their university studies, playing the occassional show in Dunedin to a few dozen friends and a growing legion of local fans. Here’s to their musical jumble-shop of carnival waltzes, manic post-punk and wonky subversive pop and it’s amazing journey from a Dunedin basement to the world.