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Retrospect Records

Retrospect Records - update

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Well hello everybody - it's been years since I posted here and probably at least 2 years since I released anything new or updated the website.  

It's been 14 years since I took on the Retrospect label and from 2005-2010 was able to release over 400 albums.  I have seen other re-issue labels come and go , some did it better than I , some eeked out a few releases and called it quits.  But most have gone by the wayside.  I have made friends , I have unfortunately made a few enemies along the way and it's all been a learning process.  From the cheaply made CD-R's I started with , to runs of over 2,000 that I shipped to distributors around the world....it was a good run.

So what's going on with Retrospect?  Well , times got tough ladies and gents.  After amassing a massive run of over half a million dollars in sales for 5 years straight and then getting involved in a number of festivals....things started to change.  Downloading killed the industry but what killed it the most was the ridiculous hikes in shipping charges to overseas customers.  

Come on , 10 years ago it was about $5 to send a cd to Japan / Germany / France / UK wherever and now it's right around $14.  That's a business killer.  

The bottom line is , when the economy tanked , I think everyone took a big hit.  Many of us never recovered.  I have dozens and dozens of AMAZING HIGH-QUALITY releases in the can WAITING to be released , but the truth is....I no longer find it profitable to do so.  My last releases CRASH ALLEY and RAZOR SHARP were small 100 runs because the interest was fading.  Also , I lost my web designer and I am fully aware that the site needs a complete makeover.  All of this costs money and I do not have this kind of capital at the moment.  

So what's in it for the future?  Well , I am at a crossroads.  As many of the old releases are selling out , and the calls to re-stock grow , I am torn between putting 100% back into this venture or just sell it off quietly and give someone else the opportunity to continue where I left off.  

CD's are a thing of the past BUT I do see a silver lining.  I hope all of you are doing well.  I made some great friends here and sparred aggressively with others.  What I DO know is that many people said I wouldnt last 6 months and here we are , 14 years later.  

If anyone has any input , I would be happy to listen.

 

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If your closing up shop/selling off or whatever, I'd be into a care package of deadstock, one of each would suffice...

 

I am not joking.

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I thought the business went up for sale a few years ago? Wherever you go from here, good luck. Must be a hell of a lot of work to get something like this going in the first place, or resurrected. 

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It is definitely a lot of work.  Do the rewards outweigh the time invested?  I don't know.  I'm gonna keep the shop open for a while and think about what direction to take.  It's as shame I can't release all these killer albums I have.  So much good stuff that never saw the light of day.

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Well Sam, you and I have butted heads for sure...but we've also had a decent run of good relations too. If you're interested, shoot me a list of anything you have that might fit my little niche.

Not that things are any less difficult for me in this shitty business.

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I'm honestly not too surprised to hear this. I will say that it is still disheartening. I still buy tons of music. Probably more than I want to at times. Because if you don't get it now it won't be there tomorrow. That's what happened with a local record store. The rent went up and the record store no longer found it profitable to stay open. My collection is well over 400 CDs now. I likely have over 100 that I still need to listen to. That's how fast I've collected them.

I still buy a lot of Demon Doll releases and have gotten more into Perris in recent times. I still buy from Retrospect on occasion. Maybe I should have bought more. It's rough. I buy what I can, but I can't single handedly support all music/labels that are out there. The market definitely has fallen out.

I would like to get the majority of the Retrospect releases. Maybe we can work something out. To do so would cost me a small fortune. Well over $1,000 it seems.

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Sorry to hear you are closing down as it is always sad when we lose another resource for our addiction / hobby. I still always prefer a physical product as opposed to a download,  legal or otherwise. I have to agree that shipping has killed buying stock items from overseas as I used to order regularly from  the States & Japan but it is too expensive now. The lack of sales is just a sign of the times I think.

My daughter (36) and granddaughter (14) are both into music but neither own any CD's. My daughter has a Premium Spotify subscription and streams via her phone to Alexa and via bluetooth in the car while my granddaughter buys downloads from itunes to be listened to via her iphone. I know many others who don't buy CD's and are happy with what Spotify / YouTube provides. Maybe streaming is 'killing the music industry'.

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I'm still waiting for the deadstock reply. 

 

Again, not kidding.

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I'm thinking Retrospect's stock is starting to get low. Most of my last order was refunded. I have one more order to make.

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On 5/13/2019 at 3:36 PM, Jacob M. said:

I'm thinking Retrospect's stock is starting to get low. Most of my last order was refunded. I have one more order to make.

That would explain (maybe not) the lack of retort to my all to serious inquiry...

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Hey Sam, talk about buttin heads, here I am.....probably one of your top 10 head butters...LOL.   Actually, after you moved to the silver pressed stuff, I started collecting them.   I have a pretty impressive collection of Retrospect Releases and the very first one was "DefCon".   You sent that to me as a sort of peace offering, remember?   I was actually surprised to see this post because I was told that due to health reasons, you had put the business up for sale.  Strange how these stories appear and are passed around. It all makes sense now.... I've still been cherry pickin off the site, Discogs and some of the auctions to pickup titles I missed along the way.  Your assessment of the CD label business is spot on....very gloomy and sadly, headed toward and nearing end I believe.  The downloading and internet of things has killed CDs  (for all but the enthusiast like us),  along with the soaring postage rates which I compained about even during my E bay selling days.   I haven't spent any time in pawn shops for over 5 years because they quit accepting CDs.   The music stores are vanishing across the US at an alarming rate.  I would be truly surprised if you could find someone to take over your business at this late stage of the game.   Finally, I do hope you see your way to at least crank out a few more for us die hards.......I wish you well!

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According to Wikipedia Retrospect released in 2005 a re-issue on CD of “Tax Exile” by former 70s Swiss rock band “TEA”. I would be keen to get a copy and was wondering if you could be of assistance?

Kind regards.

Edited by Patrick

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