International Shipping

The past year or so international shipping has been such a nightmare! I set a shipping price on the merch page in bandcamp, and inevitably by the time the tape comes out and someone orders it, the price has gone up. I always feel bad asking folks to pay more than advertised especially when shipping was already super high, so I end up eating the difference. This has now become unsustainable, and I honestly can’t justify charging $20 for someone to get a cassette tape. To add to all of this, I am paying so much in shipping to get international artist their copies of the tapes, that I am not making anything at all. Not that any of this was ever about money, but I’ve always told myself I would run this label as long as it was self sustaining.

In order to keep HT running I’m having to make some changes. First I am taking a hiatus from accepting demos from folks outside of North America. Second all shipping outside of the U.S. has been set to $100 since I have no way to block international purchases on bandcamp. If you live outside the U.S. and want a tape from HT please reachout to me via email and we can work out the shipping price then. But to be honest, it not going to a number your going to want to hear.

I thank you all in advance for understanding.

Dive by Diskless Net Label Release

Hello Friends of Histamine Tapes.
Today I present to you the latest in the Net Label series with Dive by Monpelier Vermomnt based live coding artist Diskless.
Diskless reached out to me after discovering Histamine Tapes releases at our local record store, Buch Spieler.
With a handheld Sony Vaio P, the Tidal programming language, and VST synthesisers, they began the Subaqueous Suite, for which Dive is the first. The triptych creates an immersive, deep drone experience that conceptually begins in the depths of the ocean. Please join me in this journey to the surface.

https://histaminetapes.bandcamp.com/album/dive-ht066

Out Now The Marble Admiral by Obsidian Shard

This has been a super fun release to work on. Obsidian Shard caught my eye back in 2019 with their bright and fast paced music videos that they shared on Instagram. I’ve been excited about every release they have done, and was eager to ask them to share an album with me. I’m very humbled to be a home for this release.

Cassettes were assembled from bits of craft paper, filing cabinet folders and whatever else I could find to match the color with clippings from books on DIY home repair. The whole theme seemed to fit Obsidian Shard’s frenetic cut up method nicely.

Epic Bandcamp Friday

Welcome Friends of Histamine Tapes to yet another Bandcamp Friday. While the news of impending world war, and probable future collapse of Bandcamp is weighing on me, I still feel very excited about the music I have to offer you all.

Preorders for The Marble Admiral are now live! Secure yourself a tape with the link below. The album will be released next Friday, but in the meantime you’ll get the tracks Passion for Eternity and Ambrosio’s Punishment.

histaminetapes.bandcamp.com/album/the-marble-admiral-ht065

If you haven’t already check out the video for Passion for Eternity:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=sEyDcUXjZZ0&t=17s

There are also still copies of Talking to Trees by The Corrupting Sea available for preorder.
histaminetapes.bandcamp.com/album/talking-to-trees-ht069

There are also still copies of the Sinistre cassette by .cut
histaminetapes.bandcamp.com/album/sinistre-ht063

Such a great year here at Histamine Tapes! I’m so happy for all the artists who have shared music with me this year.

Sinistre by .cut

I’m so stoked to be bringing this album to you all!

It has long been my dream to bring in more regional artists into the Histamine Tapes fold, and Montreal is really the closest city to where HT HQ resides. But regional loyalty aside this is a supremely excellent album. I knew immediately I wanted to hear this on tape.

A very concise tour of electroacoustic ambient compositions, warm drones, samples and sparse acoustic instrumentation. For this one I assembled the jcards by tearing strips out of images from a book of landscape photography. It was really fun working on this and I would feel super honored if you all would pick up a copy.

https://histaminetapes.bandcamp.com/album/sinistre-ht063

#boycottspotify

I’m not typically swayed by calls to boycott billionaire’s products. Especially when those are things I really like and find useful. Its difficult to find any billionaire that isn’t doing stupid things with their money e.g. Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos. Well I have already canceled my Amazon account and will likely never be able to afford a Tesla or a ride on a rocket anyway.

The case against Daniel Ek and his Spotify has been mounting since the very beginning. Ek’s investment in the military industrial complex has been the final straw for me. I initially avoided Spotify as I was content at the time with my CD collection and my mp3 player, but over the years I caved. I want to be completely honest about this: I love Spotify. They totally got me. The ability to listen to new music every single day and to explore the depths of obscure experimental music, and also get recommendations for more weird avant garde music, was right up my musical ADD alley. But it has been a guilty pleasure of mine. I felt shame using the service. I wanted to stand with all those other cool kids who were saying stuff like “I only listen to music on vinyl,” or what have you. The reality is I work 10 hours a day baking bread and can listen to whatever I want and I’m not going to lug my record collection to a dusty bakery. So Spotify was bliss for me.

This year I made the decision to start distributing Histamine Tapes music in other digital channels than just Bandcamp. While Bandcamp is the clear winner when it comes to the ethical distribution of music online, it will never have the convenience that streaming services have. There is an allure to the possibility of having your music playlisted with the big names of your respective genre. I had immediate gratification with this when Carlos Ferreira’s Vortex from Hakanai was picked up by one of Spotify’s editorial playlists. My decision to join the streaming world was specifically to get on Spotify. It’s the service with the most playlists, it’s one of the most popular, and it’s the one I personally used. I wanted to see and hear Histamine Tapes music when I was at work. I wanted others to discover these artists this way. I wanted to create label specific playlists to share with the world and the fans of the label.

I discovered the news about Ek’s investment in Military AI tech immediately after spreading word on social media about the updated Histamine Tapes Spotify playlist. I got a deep sinking feeling reading this news. I felt ill. There’s no way I can justify associating my name and the names of all the artists on my label, with faceless, bigoted technology of death. Being antiwar is at the core of who I am and what I do as a label. Music is about peace and should remain that way.

All this is to say that these are big complex feelings. I know there is little I can do to avoid all support for war outside of living in a tiny house in the wilderness and being totally self sustaining (or maybe not I don’t know). I’m writing this to share my guilt and also my complicity in this system, and acknowledge the inherent hypocrisy of living during late capitalism. I’m not here to shame you for making the decision to stick with Spotify. I wouldn’t blame you. I switched to a different service (Apple Music) because I’m an addict, but certainly Apple isn’t guilt free. I’ll likely change my mind about this and support a different service or none at all since that seems to be the “right thing to do.” But for now I joining the #boycottspotify movement. Fuck these billionaires and the stupid shit they do with their money.

For the time being my music and the music of other HT artists that I had distributed will remain on Spotify, but I will begin pulling my own music from the service, and reaching out to other artists to see if they want to remain their.