Over a year ago I did a feature on Full Breach Kicks but I never felt it did the label justice so I talked to label head honcho Josh recently about the label and what they are all about. Here is a bit of what we talked about.
Rock and Roll Report: How long has the label been around? How did it get started? Why the name “Full Breach Kicks”?
Josh of Full Breach Kicks: Full Breach Kicks has been going since 2004. The label came out of Full Breach 77, which is the t-shirt and leather jacket business. FBK is the label. It started because our friends the Street Brats needed a label to release their 7” at the time, so we said fuck it, let’s do it! If we only new back then how much work and time and effort and money-losing the label would be, ha ha! But we love it still.
“Full Breach” is when the SWAT team goes into a building to kick some serious ass. They go in “full breach!”, basically meaning full force, kicking ass and taking names. “77” is obviously the year punk got big. “Kicks” is a reference to the Undertones song “Teenage Kicks”. It’s more a tribute to the whole “get your kicks” theme, “kicks” meaning something good!
RRR: What kind of music does the label release?
FBK: FBK puts out CDs, vinyl LPs, and 7”s from bad ass punk rock and rock ‘n’ roll bands. Of course you have your genres like garage and power pop and glam, but basically it’s all the same. If you can tap your foot to it, if it’s got that punk attitude and rock ‘n’ roll style, then we’ll probably dig it! We like songs that stay in your heard and bounce around. You know that outlaw reggae movie The Harder They Come? The theme song, with Jimmy Cliff running around Jamaica with the law after him – insert said song into scene. If it works, then we’ll like it. That’s our thought process, at least it is today!
RRR: How many bands call Full Breach Kicks home? Name some of the best-known bands on the label.
FBK: We’ve got 19 releases out right now, with the 20-22 going to the press anytime now. Number 19 is the bad ass Swedish garage punk band The Manikins with their fourth album “Crocodiles”. Number 20 will be the old school L.A. glam punk band The Joneses with their collection “Criminal History Revisited”, which is a best of and rarities with tons of rare pics and liner notes and songs. Number 21 will be a 7” by the new Atlanta power pop punk band the Poison Arrows. The song “Sticky Situations” on there is a killer jam! Now that’s a song for a chase scene for sure! And number 22 will be a 7” by the Milwaukee three-piece co-ed power pop band Plexi 3, who write the most catchy songs you’ll ever hear!
Other bands on the label are The Soda Pop Kids, Sick Fits, Electric Kisses, Kevin K, Street Brats, Rock ‘n’ Roll Stormtroopers, Chaz Matthews, Dimestore Haloes, and some more new bands in the works for the near future!
RRR: How does the label release its music (music formats)?
FBK: Like I said before, we do CDs and vinyl, and of course all songs are available for digital download. Personally I’m not really caught up on the whole mp3 thing, but as far as the label, we do a lot of promotions through mp3s, like giveaways and exclusive drop cards inside LPs for the digital downloads.
We really want people to buy the vinyl, and if not, then buy the CD. I mean, don’t people want that personal touch of a physical product anymore? An mp3 is a little boring and doesn’t require much investment into punk rock. It’s a little sad of a format, but what you gonna do these days?
RRR: Biggest plans for the future of the label?
FBK: FBK will be around for a little while longer. We’ve still got the drive! Hopefully bands will keep coming up and writing good songs and getting out there and playing shows. Times are tough as shit right now, with the economy and the music biz being the way it is. But if ya love it and stick with it and don’t jump onto the next trend, then we’ll all be good!
RRR: The industry is going through some trying times with CD sales dropping. How does Full Breach Kicks deal with this?
Like I said, it does kinda suck. Before you could move 1000 CDs or more just fine. A store would take in 5+ copies of a new release. Not you’re lucky if they take in 2 copies. We’ve got the digital thing going with itunes, but ya don’t really see much money from that. Too many middlemen. And people aren’t buying a whole album. It would be nice to do a limited run of CDs, like 500 or 750 or so, for the band and for promos and for the people that still buy CDs. But that’s all ya really need it’s seeming like.
Really you just want people to order direct from the label. If all music fans ordered directly from the label, that would be great! The money will come back directly instead of going into other people’s pockets that don’t do anything. Of course the mom and pop records stores are great too. But in general, if ya support the band, label, or mom and pop store, then that will rock and so will you!
RRR: What sets Full Breach Kicks apart from other labels? What should rock and roll fans know when checking out your bands?
FBK: We like to have a relationship with our bands. I personally don’t like it when the record comes out and then you never hear much from the band. It doesn’t stop there! I’d like to think of FBK as a label that’s putting out something “real”. Something that represents what punk rock and rock ‘n’ roll really is about. The music, the identity, the attitude.
RRR: Do you accept demo submissions from bands?
FBK: Well we’ll listen to it, but don’t guarantee anything. Labels are looking for bands who invest the same amount as the label. I mean, no label is gonna put $5,000 into a band or release if the band hasn’t spent that on themselves already. It’s not really about money necessarily, but time and dedication. We don’t get many demos anymore though. It’s all like myspace messages. “Check us out! We sound like blah blah blah just like you’d like and you’d dig us!” So what. So does every other band. Ya gotta sell yourself a little better so a label sees thru the white noise of myspace and that whole mentality. If anyone ever emails, I always email back. But if they myspace, I don’t bother. If they were serious, they’d send something in the mail, not cut and paste the same message and forward to every label out there.
RRR: Anything you want to add.
FBK: Just a thank you to all the FBK and FB77 fans and supporters out there and anyone that places an order online. Online orders really do make the difference! Thanks for all the FBK bands we work with, you all are the fuckin best! All online orders come with a label sampler CD and other free goodies too. Thanks to Rock and Roll Report for setting this interview up! We appreciate everyone’s support over the years, and if anyone knows anything, they know that all money made at FB goes back into the business and goes to a good place. That or the bar!
You can download a pretty healthy selection of Full Breach Kick MP3s by heading over to http://www.fullbreach77.com/fbk/downloads.html