Browsing my immediate circle of influence for labels to send a new record to, I came across a few instances of something I thought was long since dead: labels being arseholes about demos.
Now, I really think that labels are very important, and play a huge part in the biz at every level, so I don't want to be too critical, BUUUUT... I mean, c'mon man - if I click your demo section that you've kindly put on your website, you must be aware that people might want to get in touch with stuff you might want to work with. It's not fucking rocket science, but the amount of passive aggressive nonsense on these things is amazing.
Phrases like "if you must send something to us", or having reams and reams of stuff to read before they'll let you have an email address, which is usually not even looked at anyway (quite a few just have memory hole email addresses that go nowhere). Like, what's the point? If you don't want people to send you stuff, just fucking say. Just a quick note, to make sure any would-be demo sender gets the idea beforehand. That's fine, and I saw a lot of good labels do this - fair play, I thought, I'm a big boy, I can handle it.
It's the sort of 'yeah, but I want to keep that option open just in case something ace comes in' bullshit that really does my head in. Either you want demos or you don't, you can't write a TED talk on how someone sent you a demo that was slightly out of your preferred genre back in 2004 and since then you've had to make them sit through this drivel before allowing them a shot. Come on, just deal with it - it's part of being a label I'm afraid. Just chill.
Also, it's 2022: I am not sending you a physical demo. It's not only terrible for the environment, but also a complete waste of time, money and effort - I'd much rather you just say 'no demos thanks'. Imagine sending a white top CDr in the year of our lord 2022 in the fucking post to a PO box in America, just for it to be ignored (which it will be). I remember doing that in the very early satan days, and I'm not about to recreate it 15+ years on.
One final whinge I'll leave you with, was that this little tale reminded me of a time back in the day, when small labels would pop up all the time, and people latched onto them a lot. One such label had a contact button, and a thing about demos, to which they thought writing, then posting a fictional argument with someone trying to send a demo which wasn't their preferred genre, was a good idea. It ended up being really salty and really nasty sounding - proper snobby. Far from it being endearing, or funny, or both, it was just irritating and left me with the distinct impression these guys were complete pricks. Oh well.