After a month or so’s hiatus it’s our pleasure to bring you another instalment in our long-standing series of imprint investigations, and one that cements our intention to focus not just on the biggest, but also some of the most interesting outfits out there. This time round we’re in the Balkans, on a deep house tip.
Mostar, Bosnia, isn’t the most likely place to find a solid, contemporary dance label, as the quietest and farthest off-the-rader of all former-Yugoslavian nations it’s a far cry from Berlin or Britain. In the case of Hijo de Colombia this doesn’t seem to matter though, as the fledgling organisation is going from strength to strength based on the quality of its output alone, focusing on unknown artists that still manage to sell actual black plastic because they produce well. Without further ado then, here’s the boss and lead production face El Nino Andres discussing all that keeps him going.
Hijo de Colombia – Bosnia – El Nino Andres
Describe your imprint’s output.
Well our output so far has been one dimensional; all three records were from myself, and all three were kind of deep house. But our next 12” will be from Stumbleine, a wonderful glo-fi release, and afterwards a 90’s sounding 7” from Liam King.
What would you say makes it different?
We want and will try to release music with substance, with melodies, groove, and soul- the whole package. No DJ tools, or cheap trends. We release everything on vinyl, with lovely artwork, but I’m subjective there. We are very careful with what we put out, as we want it to sound great now, in one year’s time, and after five years, at home or on the floor. That’s why we have three to four releases in a year instead of 20.
What is it that makes you keep looking for new talent to expose?
I love signing previously unknown artists. As an artist myself, I know how hard it is to get a deal, even if you have a top release. There is a great number and so much new talent that gets rejected every week by labels, because the label would rather release EP #15 from already well known DJ, and bigger labels receive so many demos a week, the vast amount of which are terrible, and so it takes so long to listen to everything- Soundcloud really helps me there.
What’s the label’s pinnacle achievement so far?
I guess the release of a full length album on double-12” is the pinnacle. Taking the fact that we are located in Mostar into consideration, where the standard of living is poor and connections to distribution, DJs, other labels and promotion companies are not as strong as say the UK or Germany, I would say the whole thing is a big achievement for myself personally.
Also, selling hundreds of vinyl copies of our first two releases made me happy, especially as people could have bought a bigger name label releasing bigger name artists instead of the unknown names on our releases. That’s when you realise the music on that vinyl must be pretty good.
If people were going to hear one release from your camp, what would you prefer it to be?
I would like to point out the Mas Dinero Mas Problemas LP, which arrived in April. Lots of hard work has been put in there, a lot of heart and energy, and I believe nobody will feel like they were conned for their money or time. I would like to recommend Stumbleine’s Ghosting too, but that will not be out for another month or two.
All being well, skip forward five years, where would you like things to be?
I would be lying by saying I want everything to stay as it is. I want more copies pressed, more artists released, and move further forward with our catalogue. Personally I would be happy if I could live from just from running the label, as right now I can’t, so that would be a dream come true for me.