Following the launch of FIVEUNDERFIFTEEN with IMPALA two months ago, we continue our focus on young labels, putting the spotlight on five labels each time from different countries across Europe – all voted by their peers as the best local young label. This month we head to Spain, The Netherlands, Portugal, Serbia and Germany.
According to the CEO, Nikola Jovanovic, “Serbia and the Balkan region are very challenging markets. There are lots of issues we have to address every day which in some western countries would be normal, like getting your local collecting society to actually pay the money they collected for your artist.
“But that is making us more creative in a way. Apart from being a record label I think we are more into education as we have to educate people in music business. There is a lot of DIY approach in the region as a lot of labels cheated artists so many times the artists decided to be completely independent and without a label. I think it’s a place where we, as a label, fit perfectly. We made a label because of our artists and they always come first.”
Working with S.A.R.S., Ničim izazvan, Marčelo, Who See, Artan Lili, ZAA, SevdahBABY, this young label from Serbia tries to grow in the Balkans.
Why did you start a label?
We started a label because we wanted to protect artists from being cheated all the time. We also wanted to make digital distribution a must and wanted to educate artists. But mainly our primary goal was to fight injustice. We wanted to make sure artists don’t sign unfair contracts, and know and understand their rights.
What are your best albums?
I can’t say what are our best albums, I think we all in the company have different tastes, I can say that albums by S.A.R.S., Who See, Marčelo and Ničim izazvan are our top sellers.
What tips do you have for other labels?
I would say to stay inspired by some positive examples from their colleagues. I think that Mute, Daniel Miller, [PIAS] and Beggars are doing some amazing things and have incredible artists and were able to do things their own way. Also it’s amazing what electronic labels like Kontor, Armada and so many others are doing. We are inspired by them and learn from them a lot. And so should you!
Lampshade Media’s Life playlist
More about the label: