by Corbie Hill
Ben Carr and Ian Rose, songwriting guitarist and drummer for the essential Chapel Hill garage punks Last Year's Men, are starting a new limited-run label, Sonogram Records. The business model follows the raison d'etre of many micro-labels: two friends releasing their friends' music to help them out, sure, but also for the fun of it. Yet Carr and Rose have mixed their love of music with a creative approach, and Sonogram may be a different creature—even in a region with multiple such boutique labels.
"Hopefully [we'll] work with bands that have already broken up to reissue some releases," Carr says. But first Sonogram is releasing a Gross Ghost cassette, solo work by Spider Bags' Dan McGee and material by remarkable Toronto garage-psych rockers The Pow Wows. The first of these releases should be out by early fall.
"We're doing this to try and work with the established rock 'n' roll scene and help it grow," says Carr. "If we can get an out-of-town band whose material we've released in front of a crowd of 50, then I think we've done a pretty damn good job."