Need To Know is a series spotlighting Brooklyn-based record labels. Today we meet Mike Newman and Dom Miniaci of Beyond Beyond is Beyond Records.
Year Created: 2012
# of Releases So Far: 16
Gotta ask — where does the name come from?
The name comes from a painting by our friend, Macho Mel Shimkovitz, in which one of the triptych panels had the sentence “Beyond beyond is more beyond.” I really liked the idea of what you’d find if you went beyond beyond and asked her if I could use the name for my radio show, minus the “more” 🙂
You used to have an EVR (RIP) radio show — how’d that come about? Do you have a background in radio?
I didn’t have background in being an on-air dude but I work in radio, writing and producing a syndicated classic rock show called Nights With Alice Cooper (where obviously Alice Cooper is the on-air dude). But I had simply sent a mix of music to East Village Radio and a proposal of how the show would be and they called me a few months later when they thought it’d be a good fit. Now I’m doing a version of the show on Viva Radio.
How do you source your music? What’s your tried-and-true approach to finding music you want to release?
Dominique (Miniaci, my label partner) and I source our releases all kinds of ways: submissions, stuff we stumble upon on our own, friend recommendations, and so on. There hasn’t really been a tried and true approach other than Dom and I just being big music-heads and knowing when something has that special thing we’re looking for.
You have a link for people to submit demos. Cool. Any luck being blindsided by somebody’s random submission?
We’ve had more and more submissions the more we grow as a label, so it’s been really nice getting to hear a lot of brand-new killer stuff. A lot of the stuff (like Kikagaku Moyo, The Entrance Band, Montibus Communitas, New Electric Ride, Jeffertitti’s Nile) were bands that we already knew about and followed what they were doing who approached us about working together. So we were definitely humbled by that. Prince Rupert’s Drops (whose debut album was our very first release) floored us right off the bat. Our friend, Chris Millstein, hipped us to them and once we connected, the band shared with us some recordings they already had in the can that totally blindsided us. It’s like how can a band so damn good not have anything released! We were super-excited to put out that first album of theirs and equally psyched to be releasing their next one in November.
Do you have a day job or is Beyond Beyond full time? If the former, how in the #%(*@ do you manage?
I still write and produce Nights With Alice Cooper as a full-time job, The show is five hours of radio every weeknight so it’s a lot. And Beyond Beyond is Beyond is definitely another full-time job. Basically I would not be able to manage without my amazing label partner, Dom. No way. We’re both doing tons of work but goddamnit, it’s what we love, so we’re lucky!
What was one unexpected obstacle to putting out a record? What about your favorite moment so far?
There have been many obstacles, some expected, some not. I guess one thing we didn’t fully anticipate is how long it takes to have records pressed. You really have to have your ducks in a row early and give AT LEAST three months for production time. As for a favorite moment, man, there have been so many! It’s really hard to say. It’s like every time we put out a record or even premiere a new song is a new favorite moment. Also, I think Dom and I would both rank seeing Kikagaku Moyo live for the first time as a fave. Pure magic. It’s also cool when someone we know and admire orders records from us…like Henry Rollins recently ordered some stuff!
What are you listening to most right now?
Personally I’m listening to the new Freeman (Aaron Freeman aka Gene Ween) album a serious LOT. Just ask my wife. Also the new Prince Rupert’s Drops, Climbing Light, which we can’t wait to share with everyone in November. Verma’s Sunrunner. Jon Anderson’s Animation. Ancient Ocean’s Through the Fear of Aging. Ty Segall’s Manipulator. Laraaji’s Celestial Music 1978-2011. Jerry Garcia’s Reflections. Agitation Free’s Live ’74. Masters of Reality’s Sunrise on the Sufferbus. The list goes on…
Upcoming releases we should look out for?
Coming up are Montibus Communitas’ The Pilgrim to the Absolute on September 30th. Amazing chill improvisational ambient vibes from Peru…and we’ve even got some very limited quantities on glow-in-the-dark vinyl! And Prince Rupert’s Drops’ second LP, Climbing Light, in November. Prince Rupert’s Drops are in a league of their own. This in not cookie-cutter psych music. Those that get it, REALLY get it. As for next year, the releases are starting to fall into place and we’re super-excited for the future, while we’re digging now!