On the 30th of March The Red Paintings launched a PledgeMusic Campaign to record their second album. The Red Paintings are the kind of band that you love, or that you hate. Now that seems an obvious statement. You either love something. Or you don’t. But where most things have that middle ground, where you like it, but maybe not so far as to say you love it, there is no middle gournd with The Red Paintings. I have never heard someone say “oh, I don’t mind them. I like some of their songs.” I have only heard people speak with so much passion about them, it borders on obsessive. It’s safe to say that I am one of those people. I wouldn’t be writing this if I wasn’t.
For the past three months Trash McSweeney has been held captive by TIME, only to be released upon the success of their campaign. There is a lot at stake with this campaign. If The Red Paintings are unable to get the funding required for their next album, it won’t just mean a delay on the next release, it could very well mean the end of The Red Paintings altogether. Some of you may be thinking that’s a little dramatic, but it really isn’t. The music industry will probably never jump on board The Red Paintings ship. I imagine the only way they would is if they forced Trash to relinquish all creative control, and what the world needs is a raw, uncensored The Red Paintings, not a watered down version. And this why the fate of the band lies with their fans.
The reason why The Red Paintings fans are so passionate is because of what their music does to people. It is so much more than just a rock album. Their live shows are so much more than just a gig. They are art pieces. Each show a mini revolution. The songs, the art, the costumes – they make you feel something. It’s like this switch gets turned on and you finally realise that this is what music is. Their music has helped people heal, helped people come out of their shell and this is why the world needs The Red Paintings. Now, I know that many different bands have done these exact things for fans, but The Red Paintings just seem so…different. When I first saw them live, the only way I could describe the way it felt to be there, was to liken it to a religious experience. I don’t actually know what a religious experience would be like, but I imagine the feeling I had, and shared with the rest of the audience, has to be what it would feel like. Since this is how it seems most fans feel about the band, I can’t really understand why the campaign has not reach 100% of its goal.
Recently The Birthday Massacre launched a campaign for their next album, after successfully funding their previous album through PledgeMusic. And in a single day they have reached 106% of their goal. Now, I know The Birthday Massacre are bigger fish than The Red Paintings, and don’t get me wrong I love The Birthday Massacre, but I can’t help but feel sad and disappointed that their campaign is funded, and The Red Paintings’ lies in the balance. The two bands are also running campaigns for very different reasons. The Birthday Massacre are signed to Metropolis and if the new album is to be funded in the same was Superstition, it will be partially funded by the PledgeMusic campaign. The campaign is more of a way for fans to be involved. Keep them in the loop of the recording process. For The Red Paintings it means either the band continues or it doesn’t.
People are always saying that we need to support independent musicians. They are the ones that need the most help. Without the backing of a label, where do you think they money comes from? And it’s not just money. It’s booking shows, organising tours, driving themselves around, handling press. Everything. And yet a band like The Birthday Massacre is funded in day, while The Red Paintings are still waiting. It’s great that The Birthday Massacre were successful. Good on them. It just seems unfair that The Red Paintings coming to an end could be a real possibility if they are not able to reach 100% of their goal. I don’t mean to pick on The Birthday Massacre, I am only using them as an example because their campaign was recently brought to my attention. I am sure there are plenty of bands in a similar situation as The Birthday Massacre, running similar campaigns.
The Red Paintings are an important band to a lot of people. And an important band in the world of music. They dare to be different. It’s never been about anything else other than making art. These are the kinds of bands we need to save. It is bands like this that keep the industry fresh and alive. Sure, the industry execs might not agree – but they just want to make a quick buck, artistic flare be damned. If we don’t save The Red Paintings, bands they have inspired will probably be put off. Why bother if they couldn’t make it? Any amount you can pledge helps and will be appreciated. I for one don’t want to see Trash silenced forever. The Red Paintings are one in a million, and it is too soon for them to be taken from us.
At the time of writing there is 16 days left on the clock, and the campaign is 77% funded. Do we have enough time?
If you want to help, head over to their PledgeMusic campaign.