We’ve been using the word ‘energy’ a lot lately, far and beyond it’s designed scope. It’s a word we’re all comfortable with, we’ve sanctioned its use, we’re not shielding ourselves with implied inverted commas any more or pretending that we’re being ironic. It’s hard throwing off the conditioning that emotionally constipated northern Europe hammers into you, and whilst we’re fine with ‘energy’, it’ll be a while yet before we can get to grips with anything too esoteric. Damned machismo. Energy is something we’re too obsessed with though, to be embarrassed by. It’s central to the Blanco Music way of doing things. The truth is that none of us are happy with the way the music business has been run over the last while (a decade, three?). It’s an energy thing. Decisions that should have been based on gut feeling and instinct have been put under the microscope of economics and free-market empiricism, and the end result is that music is suffering, and getting really boring. We’re certainly not the first record label to declare that our priority is putting out good music, or that we’re going to make sure that commercial appeal is the last thing any of our acts need to be concerned with. Right the way through even the biggest and most disgustingly corporatised record companies are scores of people who dearly love music, who live for it, who nurture it. But the truth is that they get marginalised, distracted, made to fear mistakes. Hell, it’ll probably happen to us. But not yet. Music depends upon creative energy, and more often than not, on a sharing of that energy. One guy banging a pair of rocks together doesn’t sound nearly as good as one guy on rocks and another guy going ‘dum dum dum’. Then you ask those two guys to stop thinking about rhythm and melody for a minute and get their heads around some spreadsheets. Instant loss of that creative energy.