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Indie label CENTURY MEDIA In Talks About Possible Major-Label Acquisition

Discussion in 'ProgPower USA' started by The Colorado Kid, Feb 26, 2015.

  1. The Colorado Kid

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    Better snag your favorite CM artists while you can. If this goes through a lot of their catalog will simply disappear.


    Independent Record Company CENTURY MEDIA In Talks About Possible Major-Label Acquisition



    And when company A gets acquired by company B, you know Some Heads Are Gonna Roll



    If you're curious how many bands will be affected just take a look at this list (scroll down on the page). It will give you a good idea.
     
  2. Palabra de Dios

    Palabra de Dios Heavy Metal Weatherman

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    Still trying to figure out why this means their catalog will disappear. It looks like a label acquisition would just mean they can run business as usual, just with more capital backing them up. As long as they're still a heavy metal subsidiary, I don't really see what the problem is.

    Century Media has been on the "mainstream metal" thing for years now; they're one of the biggest labels in metal and I haven't associated them with something that's super underground in forever. If ever.

    All it might mean is that certain bigger non-metal bands might get signed and have albums released by Century Media. Papa Roach might have a CM release right next to the new At the Gates album. So CM loses a little of its metal street cred. I don't know how this means that they'd just dump their whole roster for something else...
     
  3. Harvester

    Harvester The Promoter

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    Ask the older artists that came up on Roadrunner how that acquisition went for them.
     
  4. General Zod

    General Zod Ruler of Australia

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    It's impossible to know what this means for current CM artists and fans. First, it's unknown which of the majors will buy them. Second, even once that's known, it really comes down to which executive they ultimately fall under and how that person wants to manage the new acquisition.

    As for CM, they're no longer a label responsible for developing young, quality metal bands. While Their roster still has a good number of talented, established acts, it's been a good while since they discovered a young, high quality band.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Century_Media_Records_artists
     
  5. tungmetal

    tungmetal New Metal Member

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    I think the general scepticism of major labels among metal heads and fear of one's favorite artist being labeled as a sell out is enough for a lot of people to frown at this particular news story
     
  6. Dustin

    Dustin C-C-Cool Beans!!!

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    Exactly this^^^... my response below is an edit from another forum I lurk -

    I don't recall any metal label in the past - if history has anything to say about this - that has gone this route and had any real authority in the decisions of what they can release from the past-catalogs OR, the actual A&R concerning current artists/new signings. It's usually a "dictated compromise" further up the food chain.

    Also, they are sure to "trim the fat" on the roster (ala Roadrunner acquisition period circa 1999-2001 with UMG then again with Warner in 2006 as Glenn pointed out) From what I remember, if they become a financial burden, these minor labels usual get absorbed into the larger publisher within a year or two, and *poof* ...all gone. great examples: Noise, Enigma, Music for Nations ect. ect.

    Not to mention - any band on said label past/or present is in for a real costly, red-taped fiasco of a fight to reclaim any licensing to release/reissue their material through a different label (or even for themselves). I have always heard rumor that the big three label/publishers all have vaults of long-forsaken master tapes/music archives just like you would see on x-files, and that access to these vaults is next to impossible, let alone getting anyone to actually go down and LOOK for a particular title in question.
     
  7. Harvester

    Harvester The Promoter

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  8. Sumeet

    Sumeet Member

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    I think #10 is the key point in that article. Century Media has seemed rather moribund of late, and there are other labels now that seem to have more vitality, at least in terms of metal. Also, from a listener's perspective, since releasing and distributing music on physical media is less important these days as a vehicle to allow music to be heard, record labels are simply not as important as they used to be. If Century Media had disappeared in 1997, that would have significantly impacted my knowledge of and exposure to new metal albums and bands. If Century Media (or even one of the more vital labels) were to vanish tomorrow, the effect it would have on my music listening would be minimal.
     
  9. General Zod

    General Zod Ruler of Australia

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    This is definitely true. However, 4, 5 and 6 are equally true:

    4. Century has failed to develop a new crop of young, talented metal bands.
    5. Century has become a legacy label.
    6. Century is already incredible lean.

    Aside from the fact that Century Media is already mostly irrelevant in today's metal scene, any void they leave in the market will be filled by current or new labels. That's just the nature of markets.
     
  10. Sumeet

    Sumeet Member

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    I agree that other labels would fill any void that was left. Though I would also say that these days, bands are a lot less dependent on labels for artist development and/or record distribution, and listeners are a lot less dependent on labels for delivering music to them. So I would suggest that the void left in the metal scene by the disappearance of a record label is significantly smaller than it would have been years ago.
     
  11. General Zod

    General Zod Ruler of Australia

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    Agreed. Ultimately, whether the void is filled by self-release, new label or established label is mostly irrelevant. There will be no fewer quality releases as a result of CM getting acquired by a major.
     
  12. AeonicSlumber

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    Hate to say this, but this is actually fundamentally wrong. They've been investing easily hundreds of thousands of dollars into developing new metal bands over the last 10 few years. In fact, CM was one of the only few metal labels (and still is - for now) with bonafide A&R guys that work with the bands and develop them. The "failure" of those bands' longevity has less to do with CM not developing them, and more to do the costs of that development being too much of a burden on sales.

    Now in my above paragraph, I am in FACT including "metal" bands and not just "heavy music" - CM developed a NUMBER of true metal bands that it signed over the last 10 years that weren't just iwrestledabearonce or Suicide Silence. But with that said, In This Moment was one of CM's biggest radio successes of all time, Suicide Silence's The Cleansing was their highest-selling debut record of all time. These are all recent releases and relatively new compared to Shadows Fall and Lacuna Coil. So the label did go on to put out hits.

    And while people who are saying that the market will fill the void with new labels - yes - but that market will not allow for actual artist development, because that's what we're losing here with CM getting bought out. People should be more scared of the EMPLOYEES losing their jobs and getting laid off than the bands getting dropped, because it means A&Rs losing their jobs much like what happened at RR. More and more, it means less labels being able to grow new bands and instead opting to just crap out records and throw them at the wall to see if they stick. That's how many indies operate these days, and it's very sad to see it.

    Frankly, if I ran a label for 30 years, and my partner of 30 years just died, the mail-order business is slowing down ( as are sales as a whole), I'd probably want to sell as well. CM is one of the best labels in heavy music period for a number of reasons, and it's sad to see this happening, but I also understand it.
     
  13. General Zod

    General Zod Ruler of Australia

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    I never said they weren't investing in them, I said, "...they're no longer a label responsible for developing young, quality metal bands." Companies make investments all the time. The fundamental difference here is between the investment in and the development of "young, quality metal bands".

    That may well be, but the end result is the same; a lackluster roster.

    Who are you numbering among CM's crop of "young, talented metal bands"?

    That's more endemic of the industry as a whole. The market wasn't going to continue to allow for artist development with or without CM (as you point out above).
     
  14. AeonicSlumber

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    Strawman. I very distinctly said they invested "into developing new metal bands". Artist development isn't free. That's the whole point here.

    I disagree, but you're entitled to your opinion.

    Off the top of my head? 7 Horns 7 Eyes, Zonaria, Tesseract, Vildhjarta, "new-ish" bands like Fear My Thoughts, The Man Eating Tree, Intronaut, and Nachtmystium, and all of the imprint stuff like Leprous, Haken, Bigelf, Stealing Axion etc.

    Right, and that's what we should be mourning here. This is one of the nails in that coffin and it's a bad omen for the future of metal, and new bands trying to make it in metal.
     
  15. General Zod

    General Zod Ruler of Australia

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    Yes, you did distinctly speak of "investment". However, in doing so, it was you who moved the goal posts. If you go back and look at what I initially wrote and what you quoted, my point was about developing bands, not whether or not CM had "invested". "Investment" was not mentioned in this thread until you brought it up.

    As are you, although I'm somewhat surprised to hear you say that. Do you really believe CM has a strong roster or young, quality metal bands? CM once had a vaunted roster, that was the envy of the industry. Comparatively speaking, it's a shell of its former self.

    I agree it's bad for metal, as it's bad for any genre. However, as I think we can agree, that has nothing to do with CM being acquired. That's simply the state of the music industry.
     
  16. johnfrank1970

    johnfrank1970 Member

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    Interesting discussion. As Glenn mentioned with Roadrunner, one concern is that the back catalog will no longer be available. This has happened often when a metal label is acquired by a major label. It is not worth the major's time to press 1000 copies of an out of print album, so the album never gets reissued. I am not saying Century Media was planning on reissuing, say, the Despair discography (great classic thrash), but CM would be more likely to do it or license the titles to another label than Sony would.

    This only really affects people who get into old stuff very late in the game, *and* who want to buy a physical product. Or maybe mp3s are not legally available either. Not sure on that one, as I am not much of an mp3 purchaser.

    As others have said, I am not worried that CM going away or changing significantly is going to affect my access to cool metal albums. It just is a little sad to see another metal label, especially one with a great history, potentially bite the dust.
     
  17. SteelFireRecs

    SteelFireRecs Member

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    i havent bought anything in years from CM because of their insanely high shipping prices.
     
  18. eppst1

    eppst1 Member

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    You and I may have different definitions of "insanely high" but I don't think 3.50 is much different from other distros or online vendors. Amazon actually is higher for shipping (3.99), for example.

    Anyway... I'd hate to CM go, between them and Nuclear Blast those are easily the 2 I give most of my money to for music. I've always enjoyed both of their customer service and always enjoy "talking shop" with them at the fest.
     
  19. VenomGA

    VenomGA At War With Stan

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    Amazon is FREE Shipping!!!!
     
  20. Justin G

    Justin G Member

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    You've bought CM titles. The label and the store are two different beasts.
     

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