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Enig'matik Records: Life As A Bandcamp-Only Label

Enigmatik-recordsEnig'matik Records is a Bandcamp-only label based out of Australia with a focus on electronic music.  The label puts out digital releases and organizes live events. It's a lightweight model that can't be described as truly unique but is a great example of how digital music distribution has opened up the possibilities for microlabels and related indie activity.

Matt Earp, writing for Create Digital Music, recently considered the music and business of Enig'matik Records. Enig'matik is the project of Australia's Jake Rose (Sun In Aquarius), an electronic musician who has gathered like-minded artists together via Bandcamp and Vimeo:

"Our sole goal here is to blur genre lines, push the envelope and generally bring together like minded artists who are in it for the music, for the emotion it can convey and the unification it can achieve. Hand Picked artists have been chosen as their production qualities take detail and glitch work to blistering new levels."


Enig'matik's Bandcamp page features 11 releases mostly from Australian artists. Rose explains why he started the label:

"Having so many good friends who wrote amazing music and not having a label in Australia specializing in the music I love the most, also wanting to explore a relationship between music and art with likeminded artists."

Enig'matik Records is a one man operation and Rose also creates the videos. Though Bandcamp can be used to sell physical releases, Rose says:

"I don’t think I will ever find the need to do hard copies unless it’s for promotion at events or specifically requested by an artist. I am, however, interested in some alternative distribution techniques that I’m working on that will definitely involve art pieces for customers to show in their spaces and possibly wear."

He's also working on events, Festival appearances and North American tours.

Some of the music can be found on SoundCloud, including the above track from an upcoming Create Digital Music sampler.

At the end of the day it might be most accurate to call Enig'matik Records a digital-only label that uses Bandcamp for sales and offers one example of a label working within the limitations of Bandcamp for labels.  In Enig'matik Records' case, they have a single artist account from which all music is delivered.

Though Bandcamp does have an interest in labels using the service and has long shared information on how that might work, they still seem to have some kind of resistance to label accounts. They suggest that labels set up individual accounts for each artist plus one for any compilations released by the label.

That said, the ability to integrate Bandcamp into one's site can work really well as one sees on Amanda Palmer's website.

Given that digital-only labels have been around for awhile, one can't say that Enig'matik Records is breaking new ground. But they are a nice example of how digital distribution makes it quite a bit easier to launch small labels based on personal and musical affinities. Now one can create a microlabel and keep it simple or use it as the basis to build something bigger without having to immediately take on all the responsibilities of a traditional indie label.

Among other updates, Bandcamp recently introduced Pro Accounts and all Bandcamp sites are optimized for mobile.

Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (@fluxresearch) blogs about music crowdfunding at Crowdfunding For Musicians. To suggest topics for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.