RIP: Low Transit Industries
News posted Thursday, April 8 2010 at 11:00 AM.
Related: Low Transit Industries.
After seven years and 95 releases, beloved Melbourne indie Low Transit Industries have decided to call it a day. The label, run by Darren Smallman and Simon Baird, have buckled to financial pressures and a music industry in flux. They’ve decided to bow out on a high note with the release of Kim Salmon & The Surrealists first LP in over a decade, Grand Unifying Theory, and the debut album from Chicago’s Sonoi.
The news was confirmed in a press release today (April 8):
“Over the past couple of years the industry has become increasingly difficult to work in for many reasons. Retail buckling under the issue of downloading and the ability to produce more product cheaper and easier, making a flooded and diluted market. World financial issues ... without boring you all and to put it bluntly, there wasn’t much money in music before and there definitely is a lot less now. To combat this we have been pushing forward to start representing artists worldwide so we can keep on working with the sorts of bands we love rather than licensing product we know will sell in singular territories. I know this isn’t necessarily the best business model for a little Australian- based label but we felt it important to maintain our ideals and push forward into new markets. The move has been going well and we were happy with the progress until we lost funding from our main financier in Australia making it impossible for us to continue under the current set-up.
“This has forced us to make a decision that we didn’t want to make. We took this situation as a good time to re-evaluate our position with the business and have to decided to cease releasing records under the name Low Transit Industries. All currently available titles will remain available while stock lasts and records slated for release with stock manufactured will be serviced fully and on an ongoing basis.”
Founded in 2003, Low Transit Industries began life as a singles club, periodically sending out 7” records to subscribers. They’ve since released albums by Elf Power, Jape Squad, Legends Of Motorsport, No Through Road, Of Montreal, Okkervil River, Screamfeeder, Souls On Board, CW Stoneking, SubAudible Hum, Trans Am, The Essex Green and The Tucker B's.
“We always stuck by the non-commercial ideology of the independent label and worked tirelessly to promote artists we felt needed a voice in this world regardless of the hurdles in front of us,” the release continued. “We had some great successes and some massive failures like all arts businesses, but we still found a good reason to keep the business going each year though. Alas, it has become too difficult for us to make this label viable for us, our business partners and our artists.”
Smallman will now move to the UK with wife where he will continue to work in the music industry, while Baird will continue working in construction.