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Warning to bands about shady record label

Discussion in 'Musicians Discussion' started by MenwithVen, Nov 29, 2011.

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  1. MenwithVen

    MenwithVen New Metal Member

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    My band has been trying to get a record deal lately and we've been offered some pretty dodgy deals in the process. One label offered to sign us to their label but we would have to pay £5000 for the privelage. At first we didn't know if this was a good deal or not but after consulting some professionals we know they said that it was basically a scam and that the things that the money was said to pay for (CD duplication and being made available on all the online stores) could be done for a fraction of the price. The drummer of one fairly well known band I asked showed his manager and apparently they basically fell off their chair laughing at how ridiculous this deal is.
    I didn't really think anything of it until I noticed that LOADS of bands had started signing this deal, even some of my friends bands. This guy (its just one guy) has signed over 70 bands, many of them in the last 6 months! At 5 grand a pop that's an extraordinary amount of money that these unfortunate bands seem to be pissing away. The sad thing is, nothing he is doing seems to be illegal. Bands just sign this contract thinking they're signing to an awesome label that has a couple of semi-successful bands on it but in fact they're giving this guy 5 grand that is either going into this guys pocket or is going towards helping the bigger bands on his label.
    I decided to do an experiment. I invented a band in one afternoon, wrote a few crap songs in less than an hour and recorded them with me singing (I can't sing for shit, its been autotuned to fuck). I got a stock band image off of the internet and threw a basic fake bio together and sent it to him.
    Low and behold, 2 days later I get an email saying 'they' had listened carefully and would like to offer me a DIY deal. The email was sent in the morning which suggests it can't really have been listened to at all. Another thing that makes me think it wasn't even listened to is that the lyrics are BLATANTLY about a shady record label scamming people. I threw in lines like "My name must be Batman cz you are robbin', sixty two bands are sitting home and sobbing. My name must be Batman you're a joker, sitting on more money than a wall street broker" aswell as having complete nonsense lyrics and one of the songs being called "Where do I sign" and referencing things as blatant as touring with Dragonforce (which he said he could help us do). You can judge for yourself here: http://www.youtube.com/user/MenwithVenband

    The contracts also state that he prefers you to record at his own personal studio, another money making ploy.
    On the one hand you might just look upon this as a clever business plan in an industry where making a living is now harder than ever. I wasn't sure whether to hate this guy or admire his innotive entrepreneurial skills. Until I read this: http://www.metalthrone.net/forum/showthread.php?t=4370

    It details how one guy (and his band) were systematically destroyed finanacially by this guy. It was also written in 2008 which shows that this guy has been at it for years.
    A quick google search also indicated he was responsible for the break up of the extremely promising scottish metalcore band "Mendeed" under similar circumstances.

    Anyway make your own mind up about it but I just thought I'd give every one a heads up. I'm sure it's easy to get desperate and sign any deal that get's offered to you but think about what you're doing first. You should NEVER have to pay to sign to a label, thats pretty much the exact opposite of the way REAL labels operate.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. YoRich

    YoRich Member

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    so happy you've posted this.

    Let me take you back to 1994, Im in a shitty metal/rock band, we are about 18 and send a demo off to a "management" company, we are offered a 6 month deal in which they will try to secure us a recording contract, for this we had to pay 18% upfront (£600), if they fail to get us any interest, they'll book us gig's to the value of the upfront fee.

    We kinda knew it had to be a scam, but we went for it anyway, and after borrowing the money we went ahead and signed a deal with "top knotch management" (yes the name should have been a red flag) ran by non other than Mark Daghorn, the now head honcho at rising records.

    forward 6 months, no record deal in sight we were offered some free recording time at his studio, but being based in middlesbrough and him in essex, it wasn't really going to work so in the end we wrote it off to bad luck and forgot about it, but never forgot his name.

    I believe he scammed loads of bands including the stereophonics with this shit in the early 90's before moving on to rising studios and then records.


    in short this guy has been around for a while, scamming bands, but doing just enough to keep it kinda real, a shame considering the guy is a decent producer I believe. if you can be arsed to google more about him, search for his work with Fish from marillion, his biggest work, where he was paid off the job for being a douche bag, fish posted a very long blog about it years ago, and it's still about somewhere..

    good luck though if your in a band that are on Rising.
     
  3. sawtooth

    sawtooth Member

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    Actually, probably not if Mark has his own new studio. A number of bands around Kent are on this label too. Seems you are paying to just record with him. Funny that he includes Fish on his credits, when Fish said he did F*** all really. http://fish-thecompany.com/email/e2000-03-03.htm
     
  4. TheBeville

    TheBeville Disarm Goliath

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    Haven't started posting here regularly (yet) but felt the need to add that my band were offered a deal by Rising Records about a year and a half ago but declined because they didn't want to let us record an album ourselves (said the dealbreaker was we'd record at their studio for £300 a day/£350 a day residential, for a minimum of three weeks... not unreasonable rates for a studio but forcing a band into that to sign for your label? Well, we weren't looking for that sort of deal). It's taken us a lot longer but we're happier how we are now, and have a few people interested but are committed not to jump into anything unwise and in the meantime run things ourselves.

    I think it's just a way some people struggling in the industry are keeping afloat - by convincing smaller acts to stump up large sums of cash on the promise of a shot at the big time. When RR asked us, the main act they were pushing was Trigger The Bloodshed who admittedly seemed to be getting every major opening support slot on the heavier tours coming to the UK but having one or two bands that look to be blooming doesn't necessarily mean the label contributed to that success which is something that's hard to judge from the outside and we didn't have the sort of cash to take that risk.
     
  5. poisoned dreams

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    Stay away from this guy and label at all costs, i am really good mates with mendeed. The reason they broke up was after years of touring and two albums ( which had good sales ) they had no cash to show for it and mark of rising records said they owed him £25000-£30000, plus all there gear they got through endorsements, he said was his.
     
  6. dale_a_smith

    dale_a_smith Member

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    Sworn Amongst are on this label. They're from round our way. One of their parents fronted the money for the deal. Their album sounds great, and they supported Annihilator, played Download. that kinda thing.

    Don't agree with it, but it works if you can afford it..
     
  7. Turbitt

    Turbitt New Metal Member

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    my band "Reflection In Exile" got offered that exact same deal, they were basically just selling recording time for the sake of saying, yeah im on the UKs largest independant metal label. we know a few bands that have taken the offer up though and they all regret it.
     
  8. rob7music

    rob7music New Metal Member

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    i had a friend who's band was signed to this label, lets just say they ended up splitting up and well out of pocket
     
  9. Rank Berry

    Rank Berry New Metal Member

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    Mendeed are from the same town as me and I drink regularly with a few of them. Due to the contract they signed, they are never allowed to play as the same 5 members again (Which, personally I think sucks) and he took a lot of money from them.

    They were very promising, supporting slipknot on several dates in the UK as well as many other bands, and this guy, who should be bringing music to us, the people, can tear it away at any point he likes.

    It just shows how labels can fuck about young bands rather than give them the chance that they deserve. Its getting to that stage which, unless someone on the same calibar as Warner Bros offers u a deal, you may as well go it alone and deal with your own promotion, recordings, tours etc. That way no one can fuck you over but yourself.
    :kickass:
     
  10. FukkMarkDaghorn

    FukkMarkDaghorn New Metal Member

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    I do not know where to start on Mark Daghorn or Rising Records, I have nothing but bad things to say and stories to tell about how much of a disgraceful human being he is and the disgusting way he conducts his "record label".

    Someone said he is a good producer - he's not.

    He takes advantage of young naive bands who are utterly clueless and squeezes everything he can from them. Mendeed, Trigger The Bloodshed & Bleed From Within were all in that boat when signing to this "label". Do not think that there is any slight credibility to this label just because he's been associated with those bands.

    The guy who made up the fake band / songs - you beat me to it! I wanted to do the same thing just to highlight how much of a sham the whole thing is.

    "you'll be in the magazines, you'll be on mtv, you can tour with dragonforce"

    It sounds like a joke but that is indeed some of the shit you will no doubt be promised, there is a 99.9% chance.. maybe 100% chance that none of those things will happen.

    Everyone I know within the industry despises this man.

    "Rising Records" has been nominated at the Metal Hammer Awards for BEST RECORD LABEL - how much do you think that cost?

    It's all bribery and lies and bullshit.

    I've heard countless stories of him owing merch companies, tv channels, producers money because he never pays up.. always happy to take though.

    I'm glad people are starting to realise this is something to stay clear of but he signs bands from Italy and Mexico and all over the place now because more and more people in the UK are suspicious.

    The only way he can be stopped is by making sure people are warned by telling of their their experience so get sharing and posting this information on facebooks and twitters etc.

    Trading standards / Watchdog need to be informed!
     
  11. Dr.Heiter

    Dr.Heiter New Metal Member

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    Haha, that reply from "FukkMarkDaghorn" is amazing!
    I can verify everything stated in this thread, my band foolishly signed to this label a few years back, a complete waste if time and money!
     
  12. Joe Spinebuster

    Joe Spinebuster Keyser So-Gay

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    Pretty much registered just to +1 the fact that a lot of new posters are coming here from FaceBook, since that's where I saw the link to this thread.

    Incidentally, my band were also offered the "opportunity" to sign with Rising Records a while back. The amount of money being asked for and the fact that they outright refused to let us even consider recording anywhere except at their studio was bad enough, but the fact that the guy used MYSPACE as his primary method of communication with us was the real alarm bell ringer. Fuckin' MySpace. And this was, like, late 2010, so it's not even when people were using MySpace.

    I also come from the same city as the guys from MeNdEeD, and can confirm that I've heard the many horror stories about their relationshop with Rising Records from reliable sources. I've heard through the grapevine that Bleed From Within cannot fucking stand Mark Daghorn either, but just get on with it as best they can.
     
  13. mettalicker

    mettalicker New Metal Member

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    I was in a band that were signed to Rising Records, I'd just like to take a moment to tell you about our experience ...

    We were signed at Christmas in 2009. We'd been offered a deal a couple of years earlier but we didn't take the offer at the time. The cost of our 'DIY' deal was due to be a staggering £15,000! But after some haggling, we got them down to somewhere in the region of £5000. Promises were made and we signed the deal after borrowing some money off a relative of one of the band (we're still paying it off).

    We had recorded the album ourselves and Rising just wanted to remix and master it.

    Included in the deal was remix & master, duplication and print costs, PR 'campaign', distribution and some other minor bits and pieces.

    Now, we were all adults when we entered into this agreement (I use the term 'agreement' in the loose-est possible way as the actual contract he uses wouldn't have a leg to stand on in any courtroom). We know what we were getting into and we knew the cost. What we didn't know about was the COMPLETE lack of contact, support or any kind of help in any way.

    Rising Records shoved our release date back further and further and further. Our release party came and went and still no release date. Very embarrassing.

    No contact from Mark and no explanation what the delay was for.

    We finally released the record in September 2010 (a year and a half after recording) and, as we kind of expected, it was a complete flop. Don't get me wrong, we are proud of the album and we're glad we did it but if anyone ever asked me if they should sign with Rising Records, I would definitely tell them to look elsewhere.

    It took that long between actually recording the album and releasing it, we were no longer playing any of the tracks any more and we just became disillusioned with it all. We split up in August 2011.

    The label itself is not a total scam. They have got a few bands to some very respectable places but I would say the majority of bands that sign with Rising Records will have a very bad experience and will end up wishing they hadn't bothered.

    One final note - Dan Abela, who works with Rising, is a good producer. He shouldn't be tarred with the same brush.
     
  14. Joseph-IS

    Joseph-IS Member

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    my band http://www.facebook.com/fivedaysofrainofficial was signed to this record label just for our debut album in 2010.
    Fortunately it was not such a scam, but we must paid for our physical copies.
    The deal was suddently closed as soon as mr Daghorn asked us 144£ for delivery cost (UK to Italy) without giving us a bill.
     
  15. ESP Geek

    ESP Geek New Metal Member

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    My band signed to RR, we thought it was all pretty legit because of some of the bands currently signed to the label and the guy seemed pretty cool.

    Dont do it people, we got heavily stung and regretted it, some people dont like touching a RR Band just because they know the label's not good !
     
  16. metaluser08

    metaluser08 New Metal Member

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    My band has been signed to rising records. It was a total scam, he is the biggest asshole I have ever meet , he doesn't even try to pretend his proffesional or a decent person.

    He robs you off your money and doesn't even give you what you were promised. Those few bands who were successful on his label were not successful because of him but because those bands gigged a lot and had good advertising put into them ( not from the label ). He actually caused problems for those bands, and i know that these bands would tear up that contract in a second if they could. So don't let the success of these bands make you think that he is going to help your band.

    I am shocked that this is still happening. It is daylight robbery.

    Even some of the biggest names and companies in the UK metal industry know what MARK DAGHORN is doing and that he is demonic, he is a curse over the metal UK industry and it doesn't need it, he is holding it back.

    EVERYONES HELP TO MAKE THE UK scene and EUROPE AWARE OF THIS WOULD BE FANTASTIC by posting this around.

    I WOULD HATE TO SEE THIS HAPPENING TO MORE BANDS.
     
  17. James_TransgressionUK

    James_TransgressionUK New Metal Member

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    Welcome to the year of hell my band has just had, which forced us to split up.

    Our band page can be found here by the way, just so you know that a one-post-wonder isn't here to bullsh*t you.

    http://www.facebook.com/transgressionuk

    We had all the issues as above. We turned up to record after paying £7500 in advance for studio time at his personal studio, only to be told we 'wern't tight enough' and had to return home for four months to practice. None of us could see any issues with our playing, none that couldn't have been fixed during mixing for certain.

    So we returned home, adament that we could make the best of a bad situation by re-working some of our last-minute tracks and tighten up. We were then told he had double-booked our studio time with another band and we'd have to wait much longer.

    The result of the situation is, we as a band split up, and decided we'd try to get some of our money back for the studio time we haven't used. His arguement was that we had used the studio time we bought, so tough luck, and we wern't going to see a penny.

    The contract is so bland we don't have a leg to stand on, and we are down £7500 collectively. Not to mention all the money we spent on gear like skins, strings and new equipment to record this album.

    Stay the HELL away. I'm writing this in a lecture, so sorry for the lack of details.

    - TJ
     
  18. metaluser08

    metaluser08 New Metal Member

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    he produced my album. When tracking all he did was press play and stop, and then looked at me and asked if im ready to move on. So he wasnt even listening to what was being played and had no input at all. He then mixed it and really fucked it up. We paid for 6 days of mixing, which is nearlly 2000 pounds and I know for a fact that he spent a couple of hours mixing that album, this was after he asked us to leave 7 days earlier and made us hurry up on the tracking coz he had one of his more popular bands coming in. ( He double booked us and basically kicked us out when our flights back home were booked a week later, leaving us a week having no were to go.

    BELIVE ME HIS IS NOT A GOOD PRODUCER, THE ONLY THING HIS GOOD AT IS BEING A HEARTHLESS PRICK AND FUCKING PEOPLE OVER.
     
  19. achren_git

    achren_git New Metal Member

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    Sorry to say I've seen some friends bands destroyed by dealing with mr. daghorn. Pretty shady practices but as previously mentioned, probably not illegal.

    I think a good term for it might be 'vanity publishing' though- young bands being persuaded to pay for the title of 'signed'. And it is generally young bands, which is the sad thing, taking advantage really, very cynical.

    At the end of the day, any deal in the music business (not just a record deal) that involves you paying an upfront fee to someone should be looked at very carefully.

    that said, some people are willing to sign this kind of deal even if they think they know the risks, because they're that desperate to make it.
     
  20. gnotsib

    gnotsib New Metal Member

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    I've just seen this all spreading like wildfire on facebook, although i haven't experienced it personally i have a few good friends in the industry and heard some stories regarding Rising.

    I have known someone for many years and I know first hand that he almost lost his studio several times due to Daghorn with holding loads of money. I also met another friend via Dan as she recorded a song with my band and I know the crap she also went through. So, in short, whatever you read about Mark Daghorn is in fact 100% true. He signs almost any band, for 5 albums, charges them double what other studio's cost and the young kids he is signing will never recoup because ALL his costs are hidden. He sends his bands out on tour with no contracts to protect them and even insisting they go on tour regardless of if a show is confirmed or not. He did try to send her and her band out to europe with no van, no where to sleep, no record label support for 3 wks with only 7 confirmed shows. He charges bands stupid "buy on's", lie's and when confronted, he mouths off and is extremely rude and unprofessional. he has with held money from magazines and producers of video's. He can not even use pro tools properly, over edits (He trashed her album, leaving the mixer with nothing), he even loses music files. I have talked to so many other bands who are and were on Rising (At least 6 people), so I know all this to be true.
     
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