When we first heard of Church Of Fuck, we had a bit of chuckle. Then we looked at what kind of records they were releasing – dirty, ugly, crusty grind and metal, including several who we’ve raved about in the past – we stopped chuckling and just started grinning. A big, fat, these-bands-are-heavy-and-evil-and-we-love-it kind of grin. And once we’d gotten over that, we realised that Church Of Fuck was the perfect label for us to bring back out long, long, long-neglected Label Profile column. We dropped an line to Oliver Goodland, the man in charge, to get the inside story on the label so far…
Let’s start with the obvious, boring questions first – what made you want to start a label?
The label was originally started by someone else, although I took it over due to their lack of time to give the label. My reasons for wanting to be involved originally were just a love of hardcore and metal, and a desire to expose bands I enjoy that I think are underexposed.
And another boring one – why is the label called ‘Church of Fuck’?
Like I said, it was actually started by someone else who is no longer involved with it, he was a fan of Amenra and I’m fairly certain the name was influenced by their whole ‘Church Of Ra’ thing. The name is dumb, but it sticks in peoples minds.
You’ve been going for the best part of a year at this point – how has it been so far?
The label started in November 2011, the first release was February 2012, and there’s been another fourteen since then. Tapes have a quick turnaround time, and I am something of an obsessive. It’s been great: all I am doing it putting out bands I like, and peoples reactions have been brilliant, as has the general attitude towards the label. People seem to have gotten behind it, which makes it an incredibly rewarding endeavour. It doesn’t make money but I get to help good bands, and have made a few new mates in a few different scenes (I release all things heavy, metal, hardcore, crust, grind). I love it, and am extremely thankful that other people seem to be into it to.
What’s been your biggest triumph so far?
The first 7” for Let It Die was a pretty big deal; it was originally going to be released on Southern Lord so I was stoked on that. I view every release as a triumph though, if I’m honest. If the band is happy, and the tapes sell, then that’s enough for me. There’s no huge ambitions/delusions of grandeur – I’m fully aware I’m a bloke selling tapes out of a drawer in my spare room, lovingly named “The Drawer Of Fuck”.
And your biggest failure?
Setting the postage costs wrong on a few of the earlier releases, and them ending up costing me a fortune and making no money. I soon learnt the cruel ways of the post office though. I might as well have given the Swinelord and Esoteric Youth tapes away the amount those releases cost me. Ha!
What advice would you give yourself if you could go back to just before you started the label?
I’d tell myself about Paypal fees, and how much things cost to post, and show myself bulk buying jiffy bags on Amazon – boring shit like that. I don’t think I’d have done anything differently with the releases, just the boring admin behind them. Fuck, I sound well boring, don’t I? Oh well, I am pretty boring these days.
Although the label is based in Manchester, you’re not bound geographically – you’ve released stuff from bands from Scotland, London, everywhere. How do you go about “finding” bands to release on the label?
It’s literally just bands I either find myself, or that my mates tell me about, or that have released on labels I like. Every release is the same, I email a band telling them I like them and asking them if they’d like to do a tape. Most say yes – it’s pretty non-committal. Obviously bands that are my mates are welcome to do releases – those are nice and chill, and I get to tell them to hurry up and speak to them like an asshole, which I enjoy.
What do you look for in a band for a Church of Fuck release?
Just heaviness, nothing else. Dark/esoteric/pagan/Satanic/
At present you’re primarily a tape label – was that always the plan?
It was, but we’ve done one record and one CD, and there will be more of both. I don’t want limits. Usually a band know what they want to do, each release is different, and it’d be counter-productive to be only tapes or whatever. It’s all relative.
What’s the plans for 2013?
Swinelord’s next tape, Esoteric Youth 7”, Esoteric Youth and Prelude To The Hunt split tape, Trudger mini-album, True Destroyer Demo, more shirts (as people seem to dig those), hopefully find some sick new bands….just carry on as I have been going!
Like what you hear? Then why not head on over to Church Of Fuck’s Big Cartel page and purchase a tape or two. Of course, if you need further convincing that Church Of Fuck are worth your time, head on over to their official Soundcloud page and have a taste of some of their past releases. And whatever you do, head on over to your social media outlet of choice – Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter, or all three of them – and start following Church Of Fuck to keep up to date with everything they’re getting up to in 2013.