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INVADA RECORDS

South Bristol’s Invada Records is the label and recording studio founded by Geoff Barrow of Portishead. A hard-working operation concerned only with the music, Invada is at the heart of the film-score resurgence. Long Live Vinyl sits down with label manager Redg Weeks to find out the Invada story…

How did Invada Records start?

“Geoff Barrow came back from Australia after taking a small period of time out of the UK and got together with Fat Paul, who’s a local entrepreneur, venue owner, gig promoter and a guy who’d previously had a number of small, yet successful, independent Bristol record labels – and between the two of them, they founded Invada. Th remit was to release pretty much anything they wanted, no matter how obscure. Essentially, ‘we put out what we want, when we want’. This was around 2002, 2003 I believe.”

From those beginnings, how did Invada become the label it is now? Would you even describe Invada as a soundtrack label?

“I would and I wouldn’t. I would say that we’ve become synonymous with soundtracks over the past five years, but we never set out to change the format of what Invada was about. It’s just happened organically, through a series of events, which includes Geoff getting into writing film scores with Ben Salisbury.”

What was the first release that really signified the label’s move into the new territory of film scores and soundtracks?

“I joined the label in 2009 but the real turning point wasn’t until 2011 to 2012, when there was talk of us bringing out Drokk, which was the project Geoff and Ben had just done with 2000 AD comics. I had also brought in the Drive film score at around the same time, so we had two relatively big records that were film scores and I think those two paved the way for the label to start to consider putting out more soundtracks and scores…”

Drive was a big one, wasn’t it?

“It was massive. I saw the film around October 2011. People were already buying the music on iTunes, and those buying it were across a broad spectrum: your average Joe, people who’d buy Aphex Twin, Orbital, Prodigy, bands like that, as well as people who were into film soundtracks, and then people like me, who were listening to a lot of different stuff. Th Drive soundtrack just ticked a lot of boxes. So I reached out to the film company and we did the deal really quickly.”

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