It's official: Flobots are no longer without a label. After parting ways with Universal Records in December 2010 -- the label that issued the band's last full-length, Survival Story -- the band has officially been picked up by Shanachie Entertainment, a prominent independent label founded in the mid '70s by Richard Nevins and Dan Collins, and known primarily for its world, soul, jazz and R&B releases. In an effort to broaden its reach stylistically, the imprint has announced plans to release the act's new album, The Circle in the Square, which the group financed and recorded on its own at the Blasting Room.
"The band's activist, socially conscious stance fits in the tradition of other politically oriented artists championed by Shanachie, Fela, Linton Kwesi Johnson, and Mutabaruka," notes Monifa Brown, Shanachie's Entertainment's VP of publicity, in a statement making the announcement just moments ago. "Armed with musicianship, intelligence, and an ingrained sense of rebellion, FLOBOTS are looking to engage and activate fans one mind at a time."
"We're excited to get the album out," says Jamie Laurie (aka Jonny 5), who co-fronts Flobots with Stephen Brackett (aka Brer Rabbit). "They believe in their artists. We feel good about them, and we're significant to them because they're getting into the world of alternative."
The timing is ideal for the partnership -- which only encompasses the release of this new record -- for everyone involved, for the folks Shanachie, who are broadening their scope, and for Flobots, who were contacted by the label just as the band was in the process of recording the new record. "It felt like a good fit for what we're doing now," notes Laurie. "We did the whole album ourselves and then we were just thinking, 'What's the best way to get it out right now?' and this seemed like a great way to do it."
Although a release date has been set (Tuesday, July 31), the artwork for the forthcoming ten-track album and all of the other details are still being worked out. But even while all of the logistics are still be ironed out, Laurie and company are understandably excited about the prospects.
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