Today I bring you an example of an independent band that seems to be Doing Things Right.™
The band is Brooklyn’s Quiet Loudly.
I first became aware of the band from the mostly-excellent, but not often released, Cactus Killer Radio podcast. While the stuff CKR plays is varied, the common thread that ties it all together is that, for the most part, it makes an excellent driving-at-night soundtrack. I would often wait months to listen to an episode, until finding myself alone in the car at night with a long drive ahead of me.
When I listen to an episode of CKR, I almost without fail need to make one or two mental notes to find out more about a band, or at the very least, find an MP3 of the song that caught my ear. (Other bands I’ve found this way include My Teenage Stride, Spike, and Sing-Sing.) Episode 52, which featured Quiet Loudly’s “Over the Balcony,” had me rewinding to hear it again, multiple times. I ultimately shut off my MP3 player at the point in the podcast where the song began, so I could hear it again the next day.
I tracked the band down to their MySpace page, where I came across a blog entry promising a copy of their never-to-be-released debut album Destroy All Monsters to “anyone that asks nice enough.” I went ahead and did that, and before long found a CD-R and nice handwritten note in my mailbox. The disc had unfortunately cracked in transit, but on the strength of “Over the Balcony” and the kind gesture, I made a mental note to buy their soon-to-be-released (second) debut album, Soulgazer.
The release date must have slipped a bit, because I checked their MySpace a few times in mid-2009 and found no sign of the album. Then it slipped my mind for a number of months before, lo and behold, I checked in and found Soulgazer had been released!
I knew I wanted it on CD (I like making my own MP3s, and when disk space gets even cheaper, FLACs), but the disc was only available from this not-very-reassuring page. I bought it there anyway. I didn’t get any e-mails acknowledging my purchase (aside from the usual PayPal receipt), so I was a little worried, and made a mental note to try to find someone to contact if a few days passed without word.
What I ended up getting instead, seemingly out of the blue, was a ‘follow’ notification from quietloudly on Twitter! I didn’t realize that I had purchased the album directly from them. That they take the time to stalk track down their fans online is, well, completely fucking awesome. While it’s typically my policy to use social networking services for only keeping up with people I know, I was glad to make an exception for them (even if most every tweet they tweet is about shows they’re playing in New York).
I took the ‘follow’ as my receipt and eagerly awaited the album’s arrival. It came a week later, but I hadn’t taken into account that my only CD player was the one in my car, so I spun the disc for the next few drives, waiting until I found a computer with an optical drive, on which I could LAME up some MP3s.
I guess I didn’t give the envelope a thorough enough look-through at first — and it’s a good thing I didn’t throw it out — because I had missed something else inside.
Seriously. How awesome are these guys?
I hope there’s some New York in my future, because I must see Quiet Loudly live, perhaps many times.