When we first got sent Fixers album 'We'll Be The Moon' a few months ago we fell for it instantly. Beach Boys tinged psych pop with a clear ear for melody and big tunes - we thought it was destined for great things. And then we waited. We waited ages for the release, seeing it pushed back and back and then... nothing. Sadly, it turns out Fixers label Vertigo dropped them three days before the album was due out, pulling them off tour and leaving them to clear their desks. We rang up lead singer Jack Goldstein to find out what happened and how his band have recovered from the whole situation.
Gigwise: So tell us, what happened with Vertigo exactly? What’s been going on in the last few months?
Jack: Well, we were due to put the record out in May, and it got to about the week before the release and essentially Mercury pulled the plug. It was a nasty situation.
And did they give reasons for why they’d come to that decision?
They basically told us that they didn’t want the album. We’d already come to the decision that we didn’t want to carry on and that we weren’t going to have a relationship with them after the release of the album anyway. It was a shame and unfortunate that was made so near the release.
How have you recovered? The album is out now, isn't it?
Yes, it is. We were fortunate enough to start up our own label, which was one of the first things we did when we got signed, we started up the vanity label and so now we have put out the record through that. Which was good, it was great exposure, reasonably big record and a well reviewed record so it is good for our label to have that on it. It turned out OK but it was a really tempestuous time, a really hard time for us.
What was it that made you sign with the label initially?
I think it was just naïvety, we were quite overwhelmed. We never really thought about the correlation between us and the label – how rock based they are, how singles and radio based they are. We got sidetracked a little bit, you know, but I accept full responsibility for that. It was a silly idea, really.
And would you say this is a sort of warning towards other bands looking to sign a deal and maybe deciding between a major label and an independent.
I’d just say make sure the label is the right label for you. Don’t allow yourself to get romanticised by the idea of a label. I mean the funny thing is, when you think about it, a record label, the simple rationality of what it is, it’s just a label, it’s a sticker on an album. It doesn’t really mean shit so don’t get yourself too romanticised by it. Be cynical about it, find problems with it – make sure you have the right label.
Did you feel like you maybe lost an element of control as a band?
Yeah, we lost a lot. It wasn’t so much control it was more like compromising. Luckily it never affected the music at all though, we never really compromised on the music. I’m very very happy with the album and hopefully some extra songs we recorded will make their way out pretty soon.
And what does the future hold for Fixers? What have you got coming up?
Well, I’ve written about twenty new songs that we’re kind of demo-ing at the moment which was another problem with the label. I've never been a fan of the scheduling of releases, I want the music to be heard by the fans at the same time as the musician does almost. It’s such an instant thing, you know, you’re making music at the same time as you’re giving it to people. We’d record a song and then we wouldn’t be able to play it, it wouldn’t get released for months on end, the album was recorded for a year almost. We're hoping to have a brand new single out by the end of the year at least.
And how has this experience changed Fixers as a band?
I think we've just learned that we'd rather be a big fish in a small pond rather than a very small fish in a massive pond. We're excited for the future now.
Fixers debut album 'We'll Be The Moon' is out now. The band play Birthdays in Dalston on July 31st.