Profound Lore

Profound Lore
Name: Profound Lore Records
Date of Birth: May 2004
Releases to Date: 34
Biggest Seller: Alcest Souvenirs D’un Autre Monde
Upcoming Releases: Gates Of Slumber Conqueror, Krallice, Hammers Of Misfortune (double album)

Profound Lore began as the "hobby-like venture” of a few friends, but over the past two years the label has evolved into a one-man enterprise, shaped a distinct "aesthetic identity,” and provided owner Chris Bruni with a full-time job. Specialising in eclectic and extreme music and limited edition vinyl, Profound Lore thrives in the darker reaches of the artistic musical underground, releasing albums that demand strong reactions.

Stand out from the swarm
Bruni: I’m dabbling within many genres under the umbrella of extreme music and extreme metal, finding the best and most unique artists. I like the fact that I get to work with individuals who are anything but "normal” yet are intelligent and have exceptional taste and knowledge of music. It’s about bringing them together to build a label recognised for releasing quality art that’s meant to provoke, enlighten, intrigue, and even offend if need be. On a message board one guy was saying the new Portal album is so fucked up and frightening that he didn’t know if he could even like it. That was probably one of the best comments on said album that I have come across. Another reviewer described the Alcest album as music delivered straight from the heavens. An even bigger compliment was just the other day when Jarboe told me that my label reminded her of labels like 4AD and Mute when they started out.

Turning points and defining moments
In the beginning the goal was simply to have a cool hobby on the side and keep my sanity in check. But then I couldn’t find a "real” job in my field (Public Relations) and out of frustration I decided to take the label to its next level. At certain turning points (when I was officially free of partner constraints, for example) then the vision of the label became clearer and more focused. If I were to pick one single release that I am most proud of to date it would be the Asunder album Works Will Come Undone, mainly because not only did it set new standards within doom metal, this is the album I saw as a crucial turning point in Profound Lore’s direction. It defined the real aesthetic and aura of the label. So in a way, the Asunder album (released on October 31, 2006) signified a new beginning and birth for Profound Lore.

Simple but still official
As much as I hate contracts, sometimes I conjure them up to protect myself from opportunists, and not to take control of the artist. If there is no contract we have to come up with a solid trustworthy handshake kind of deal. It’s a good way to keep it simple but still official. Depending on the deal, if I give artists money for studio costs, for the most part I need to sell x amount of albums to recoup, but I give them a good percentage when royalties do kick in. The priority releases tend to cost the most, because of studio costs, artwork, and of course the costs to manufacture the album. Also I have to put aside a budget for advertising (usually magazines) and spend a ridiculous amount on postage. With the label’s growth and with sales slowly rising, financing studio costs for artists who need it is slowly becoming more feasible. Throwing several thousands to an artist has this fulfilling feeling — you know the label is becoming more prominent.

The full experience
One of the goals when building the label up over the last few years was to have more traffic and orders coming through via the website. Since the shopping cart system was implemented, more and more people have been ordering direct, which is a definite factor in helping Profound Lore to grow. I send out orders pretty much within 24 hours, so the customer knows they will get their order in a timely manner and not get ripped off. I am very conscious and very adamant in offering the best possible service and communicating with customers to the best of my abilities. Exceptional packaging is also important to help present the release and the challenge is to reflect the music and sell it for a reasonable price. The audience that my label caters to are consumers who appreciate cool packaging and art to go along with the music, to make it a full experience.