Bristol’s new student-run record label HUBB Records has dropped the second in a string of 10 releases from BIMM students planned for this summer. On Friday, rap-metal trio Profiler’s new single Burn hit the digital shelves. Taking strong influences from Limp Bizkit, Linkin Park and Deftones, they brilliantly evoke the sounds of 90s nu metal with a contemporary twist.
It comes after psychedelic pop 6-piece Beverly Shrills (pictured above) released their excellent Like to Be Alone last Tuesday. You can hear both releases below and you can also catch Beverly Shrills and Profiler live this August. Beverly Shrills are throwing a single release party at The Lanes on Saturday with a few friends in tow and Profiler headline Hy-Brasil on 13 August.
You can hear both releases below and you can also catch Beverly Shrills and Profiler live this August
The idea for HUBB Records grew out of the annual BIMM Album, which sees all eight BIMM colleges from Bristol to Berlin curate a yearly compilation album showcasing the most promising students currently under their wing. Those who make the cut are handpicked via a rigorous selection process and every track is recorded professionally before being released at the end of the academic year on CD and all major digital platforms. With BIMM alumni including two-times UK album chart topping artist George Ezra, Izzy Bizu and Tom Odell, you can be sure that the eyes and ears of the industry are focussed on these releases for the next generation of musical talent.
With BIMM alumni including two-times UK album chart topping artist George Ezra, Izzy Bizu and Tom Odell, you can be sure that the eyes and ears of the industry are focussed on these releases
However, BIMM Bristol’s head of industry and artist development Mark Bowers knew that these individual artists could benefit even further from releasing their singles individually, and set about recruiting a team of students to work on the new project that would become HUBB Records.
Two of the students heading up HUBB Records are Miriam Ryska and recent graduate Elliott Tottle. 22-year-old Music Production graduate Elliott has taken a lead on the production and A&R side of things at HUBB Records. He’s been able to make use of his experience in music production, as well as a history of putting out DIY releases for himself and friends; however, he says that launching a record label was a whole new experience and a learning curve, especially fitting everything in around full time studies.
‘I primarily have been working on production and A&R’, says Elliott, ‘liaising with the external producers and mix engineers who have been working on the singles, attending studio sessions and making sure the artists in general are equipped to the best of everyone’s abilities for their release.
During term time it was like taking an extra module, that’s a lot of extra work
‘During term time it was like taking an extra module, that’s a lot of extra work – something I was aware that I would be undertaking. So it wasn’t easy to ensure it was getting the attention required, but I think that regular meetings as a team and with our individual artists helped a lot. I meant that the label time was separate to study time and I didn’t have to worry about one while working on the other.’
21-year-old Miriam has just finished the first year of her Music Business degree at BIMM Bristol, and looks after the marketing and media outreach for HUBB Records, on top of juggling an internship with a music label in Berlin.
‘It feels like having two part-time jobs in two countries’, she explains, ‘but very exciting to see the singles being released. The time spent on it is worthwhile and it’s definitely satisfying when you see the results. I think of this as a student to student project, as it does involve a lot of not knowing and trying to figure out the best way to do things. The music industry is a never-ending learning process and having the opportunity to get some industry knowledge while being in full time education is perfect.’
The music industry is a never-ending learning process and having the opportunity to get some industry knowledge while being in full-time education is perfect
Alongside Miriam and Elliott, the HUBB Records team includes Tom Walker, Leah Davies and Luca Lilliu, who each have their own areas to manage. Elliott explains:
‘Tom has been doing most of the write-ups for the artists, introducing them and helping prepare content for their press releases. Leah has been managing a lot of our social media and working on other areas of marketing. Luca works with me on the production and A&R side of things – in particular he has been dealing with the different mastering services. And everyone acts as the main point of contact for two or three of the artists on HUBB Records. Communication is key across the team with the eleven different single releases occurring almost simultaneously.’
Miriam adds: ‘As Elliott said, we all have our own job roles and areas we focus on, but as we are a small team of students – not experts in the field – we tend to help each other out. From the beginning, we’ve all had the opportunity to state our own opinion and ideas without being scared of sounding like amateurs.’
Of course, they’ve also got the support of their BIMM tutors, who are all experts in their field, as well as having input from an even wider group of industry professionals when it came down to selecting which students would be signed to the label.
‘Our artists underwent a rigorous selection process,’ says Elliott. ‘There were around 65 submissions for the BIMM Bristol album this year, which we had whittle down to 20. We then sent those 20 off to a number of industry professionals including producers, journalists, major and indie label representatives and promoters to get their feedback on each track. Once we had a taste of what the industry was looking for, we made our final cut.
All of the artists we are releasing have such a different sound that everyone will be able to find a release that will get them hooked
Miriam adds: ‘All of the artists we are releasing have such a different sound that everyone will be able to find a release that will get them hooked. From indie pop to nu metal, or lo-fi electronica to indie rock, the variety is huge and all artists are working very hard on their releases, which is great for the label.’
Without further adieu, meet the artists being released on HUBB Records this summer –
Beverly Shrills – Like To Be Alone // Released 24/07
Elliott: These guys create such a unique sound in their songs, both recorded and live. Their overlapping guitar and synth melodies add to the vocal harmonies throughout in a beautiful way.
Miriam: Beverly Shrills’ sounds has something very positive that I really like. With its catchy melodies and cleverly written lyrics it will definitely get the crowd hooked and singing along. I really like how this release has developed and am super excited to see where they’ll go from here.
Profiler – Burn // Released 27/07
Elliott: There is a wealth of rock and metal talent within BIMM and so we felt it needed to be represented by the label. Profiler’s demo for Burn was just that little bit more stand-out from the rest and so it made the cut. I love the nods to nu metal with the turntable scratching in the track.
Miriam: It’s been very interesting working with Profiler, who have a slightly different sound and are positioned within a different genre than most of the other acts we are releasing. Their excitement and eagerness to release was in some way totally insane! They’re definitely on the right path, they have a vision that shows in their music and I’m happy for them to see this release coming out.
James Humphrys – I’m Not Your Man // Released 03/08
Elliott: We knew that James had a plethora of quality songs in his catalogue already and so we were particularly excited to be a part of this next track… and the song is so catchy
Miriam: Imagine summer time, chilling on a boat and this track comes up on your playlist or radio – ideal! You can’t stop listening to it as well, it’s such a feel-good track. James is very talented and put a lot of effort into this release, and it definitely paid off. The track sounds amazing and I can’t wait for others to hear this masterpiece.
I can’t wait for others to hear this masterpiece
Saro – Deconnecter // Released 17/08
Miriam: Deconnecter is a very special release on HUBB Records, as it’s the only release only focusing on electronic music production exploring the lo-fi synth sound. It’s also the only track without any vocals. Saro has created an amazing sound and is definitely not afraid of doing things his own way. I’m very excited for him about this single release, as well as his other project coming out soon. I can’t wait to hear more from Saro.
Saro has created an amazing sound and is definitely not afraid of doing things his own way
Amé – You Never Left // Release date TBC
Elliott: High-quality production and a strong female vocal with plenty of harmonies are the headlines for this track. It’s one that would fit equally in the club or in your bedroom.
Miriam: This is a dreamy and nicely produced track that, once again, brings out a completely different side of BIMM’s live performance artists. Amy is not afraid to take on and collaborate within a genre that is sometimes hard to stand out as a vocalist. She has done amazingly though and her voice resonates perfectly in this collaboration. She’s also been doing some live acoustic performances, so check her out.
Luna Haze – Easy // Release date TBC
Elliott: Mellow, relaxed vibes emanate from this song. This two-piece have written a truly enchanting single.
Miriam: Lovely music from a lovely music duo. Their soft textures and melodies alongside Sophie’s vocals are mesmerising.
This two-piece have written a truly enchanting single
Sinclair – Palms // Release date TBC
Elliott: This one was right up my street from its earliest stages, some of the finest songwriting and arrangement on show coming from fellow students. I got the opportunity to go with the band to Rockfield Studios for the recording of the track, which was an amazing experience and it has meant that I can’t get this one out of my head. I’m a big fan of the long, rising structure building up to the big release in the track.
This one was right up my street from its earliest stages
Hamartia – Homesick // Release date TBC
Elliott: The riff in this song blew my mind, it was something I had heard previously at one of the band’s live shows and when they brought it to us as a submission I made sure to get the rest of the team on board.
Temple Keys – Siren // Release date TBC
Elliott: A song to get your feet – and the rest of your body – moving. Something of a throwback to the indie rock of the noughties with its own Temple Keys twist. This band have their sound nailed, with energy at the core of their live performances. This song is a fine example to show to those who aren’t familiar with Temple Keys exactly what they’re all about.
Miriam: Temple Keys are on course to becoming the band on everyone’s lips. They are confident that they are ones to watch and it’s clear that it’s in their nature to be in such a position. Their single is full of energy and dynamic sounds. A soon-to-be classic.
This band have their sound nailed
Parowan – Brother // Release date TBC
Elliott: Powerful basslines are a key feature of this energetic track. The movement of each element in the arrangement, the soaring guitar sequences at the points of climax and the switches in pace and intensity throughout make for an enticing listen, time and time again.