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London Riots leave Indie Label Warehouse Burnt to the Ground
 
  by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA
started: 08/10/11 5:14 pm | updated: 08/10/11 5:14 pm
 
On Tuesday, August 9 at 4:00am GMT on the third night of these increasingly senseless riots, the distribution warehouse for Sony/PIAS was set ablaze in North London. It was a 3 story/20,000 sq.ft facility mainly used by PIAS, a distribution company, that deals mainly with indie labels and stored cd's and vinyl for more that 150 labels on site.

Indie labels that had their releases being stored include XL Recordings, Beggars, Domino, Wall Of Sound, Warp Defected, Sunday Best, Big Brother, Sub Pop, Soul Jazz, 4AD, Ninja Tune, Secretly Canadian, Jagjaguwar, etc. Nearly all of them are reporting massive losses. Entire back catalogs, new releases, upcoming releases, cds/vinyl numbering the 1,000s and 1,000s are up in smoke and reduced to ash.

Mainly labels fears they might have just been put out of business, despite any insurance returns that only pay for cost not value. Indies teeter on thin lines, hedging tight budgets by creating a record and hoping to make it back to black on its sales and pushing current sales revenue to the next project. With no inventory to sell, then that's it no revenue or cash flow and they grind to a stop. Also, entire old releases have just been put out of print, where there were a few 1000 copies still available for sale, now there are none, and they can't afford to go reprint old material.

This travesty not only affects the labels and PIAS, but anyone involved in the indie music business chain. The artists whose albums can't be released and may have to be pushed back months even if they already booked shows now to support the record. The producers who won't get paid royalties for the same reason. Also, the independent record stores who rely on PIAS to distribute new product to them or restock sold out product.

It will take a while after the smoke clears to see the overall damage that this act of vandalism has created, but it certainly will be a huge impact on the Indie music world.

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