Thursday, 23 February 2012

Hang Tight Records - Label feature


With the music industry like it is at the moment, it's always heartwarming to come across independent, DIY records labels who are bringing new music to fans, and presenting it in really good ways, with good quality packaging, etc. Hang Tight Records are one such label.

I recently bought some records from them, as I wanted some pop-punk to listen to, alongside the hardcore/grind I've been listening to recently. So, I thought I'd do a feature on the label, as I know how hard it is for someone to get positive press in this day and age, especially when they're trying to grow for themselves and their bands.


I spoke to Joe, the label founder recently by e-mail and asked him about how he formed Hang Tight and about some of his achievements to date.


So, how did you first start Hang Tight Records and what was your inspiration?

Me and a friend of mine had always been interested in starting our own business. We tossed around a few ideas and went with record label. The inspiration for me I guess came from the passion I have for pop punk, I grew up listening to drive-thru bands.  We got some pretty rad contacts pretty quickly and started work on our first release in August 2010. Unfortunately due to Uni commitments my friend left to concentrate on that, which just left me (Joe) running the label.  

What has been your proudest moment so far?

This January I bought over On Call Heroes from Canada. I tagged along to a few shows and just seeing kids singing along to these guys was absolutely amazing! The guys were so far away from home, yet everyone some so accommodating to the guys, it was touching.

What was the first record you released and can you tell about how it went?

The first record released on Hang Tight was the Me vs. Hero 12" re-release of Days That Shape Our Lives. Just being associated with Me Vs Hero is a honour. As a band they represent everything that Hang Tight represents. They are honest hard working guys who just want to make pop punk! I think the best thing about that record was how much I learnt in the 3 months it took to press. With everything I know now I would love to do another record like the MVH 12".

Do you think social media has helped to grow the profile of Hang Tight?

Hang Tight was always based on social media. I have a very loyal fan base, of which I am so grateful for; these guys have spread the Hang Tight word everywhere. This label would be nothing without them.

What are your plans for the future of Hang Tight?

I am moving into PR with Hang Tight. I should be making a public announcement real soon, and launching a new section of the web site. 

I think for the next 6 months or so I will be focusing on Distro and selling through the very last of the stock I have left. Then we will see if I will release some more vinyl. 

What do you think of the current punk/hardcore scene in the UK?

I'm just glad there's guys out there like you who gives a shit still about independent artists / labels. I make my own luck. I work as hard as I can and I hope that one-day pays off. 

What music have you been listening to recently?

Recently I have been listening to the On My Honor record. I'm stoked for their tour in March with The Rookie League. I've been listening to A Face For radio, they are a rad pop punk band from the states.
Are you in touch with your local scene, and if so, which bands should we check out?

Not so much my local scene. I live in a very small town with not too much going on. I'm trying my hardest to kick start it. I have some really cool bands coming through here, I have Promise me Tomorrow and Together We Fight coming here in March so I guess you could check those guys out. Both bands are really cool. 

Hang Tight have some really cool pop-punk bands on their roster at the moment, and I'm doing this feature, I thought it would be rude not to give them a mention.


Who's Driving? Bears Driving are a pop-punk band from Essex. They have recently releases a split 7" record though Hang Tight with Massachusetts punk band Challenges. They also have a UK tour planned for April this year. Head over to http://www.facebook.com/whosdrivingbearsdriving and checkout out Challenges at http://www.facebook.com/ChallengesMusic.


There's also a bit of an international flavour to their roster, thanks to Canadian band On Call Heroes, who hail from British Columbia. Hang Tight are due to re-release their record Brotherhood, shortly. You can hear more by On Call Heroes at http://www.facebook.com/oncallheroes.

Then there's Sheffield's own The Rookie League. Their current EP The Wolf Pack, is available on cassette at the moment. The Rookie League have been creating quite a name for themselves, sharing stages with the like of We Are The Ocean and Polar Bear Club along the way. Give them a shout at http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Rookie-League.



Also on Hang Tight's roster at the moment, is Knoxville, Tennessee punk band On My Honor. Their latest record - Nature and Nurture, is up for pre-order in the form of limited gold or transparent green vinyl. You can check out On My Honor via Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/onmyhonor.




All It's Worth are one of the newest additions to the Hang Tight roster. Hailing from Ireland. They are currently in the studio, recording songs, so expect to see things from them soon. In the meantime though, you can see studio updates via their Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/Allitsworth. You can also listen to two of their on that page too.


Now as well as the label itself, Hang Tight also has a distro, where you can pick up other carefully selected releases as well as those of the label by going to http://hangtightrecords.limitedpressing.com/store.


As well that, Joe is turning to PR as well. He has set up Hang Tight PR to help support up and coming bands, so if you're in a band and would like top quality PR, head over to http://www.hangtight.co.uk/hang-tight-media/.


Also a bit of news about future releases from Hang Tight. If you pre-ordered The Rookie League tape, you should have by now received a free cover song from the band.


On My Honor have announced they will be touring the UK and Europe in March, is support of their new record - Nature and Nurture, which is due to be out on the 23rd of March, and is currently up for pre-order.They have also just released their new video for the song - Definition, which is being shown exclusively at this link http://www.altpress.com/aptv/video/premiere_on_my_honor_definition.


Also, if you pre-ordered the On Call Heroes CD, you should have received your download code. All orders will come with free stickers too!


Finally, the Hang Tight £1 sale is finishing at 12am tonight. This is your last chance to grab a bargain. Head over to http://hangtightrecords.limitedpressing.com/store to grab any records that take your fancy. Also make sure you visit them on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/HangTightRecords for more news and music.

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