trifekta seemed to be similar in concept to spunk. both are australian re-releasers of albums, i guess labels cum distributors of some form, but they end up with their own catalogue number on the releases. in the case of trifekta, they are connected to festival mushroom records (australia’s fascist label). spunk also ended up selling out to emi and more recently universal through cooperative music. i felt dirty for a while. you either stop caring or take a stand and boycott. who is truly independent? i wish i could find the major label octopus again!
whatever the case, both ‘labels’ released some of the best music for the australian ‘market’. in some cases, as evidenced by this sampler (which came from the clear out at three d), they released some well known local bands such as the go betweens (late era), architecture in helsinki and even the avalanches. in addition, herein, they were the label for a range of lesser known australian bands, such as sodastream and gersey.
they were also apparently the distributors for some very well known, excellent and in some cases popular talent from thousands of kilometres away, such as songs:ohia and magnolia electric co (something i didn’t realise), the decemberists (who i never got – too twee), deerhoof, xiu xiu and superchunk. i am not sure these were exclusive release agreements. that almost doesn’t makes sense.
as for the songs here, i’m not sure it works as a sampler. it seems to reflect the quite scattered nature of their stable, and it’s hard to get a handle on any of the songs really. i had this sampler before i found my way through to jason molina and yet the songs:ohia sample here, just be simple, never worked to draw me in. it’s a good song, but it just didn’t fit here. i think my brain must have rejected the whole lot.
the sampler doesn’t even end on a clear high note – just a repetitive wishy washy piece of electronic drum machines and beeps. it feels luke warm and one dimensional, the whole thing. maybe a distributor doesn’t need to curate its artists to pick the flow and relationships and sounds that fit naturally together. i would have thought for the sake of selling albums and promoting their artists, however, that this sort of cohesion would be in their best interests.
i can’t actually tell if trifekta still exists, since their website has been taken over by someone clearly not into releasing great music. and even in an attempt to view the label’s myspace page, it notified me of malware present and ready to infect. this is a shame. and the least enjoyable day of listening so far…