Thursday, 3 July 2008

In the beginning, there was the word...

...and the word was 'psychedelic'.

Back in the late 80s/early 90s, Ivor Trueman and
Richard Allen's empire consisted of three psychedelic pillars, each one dedicated to the promotion of 'head music': Freakbeat magazine, the Freak Emporium, and Delerium Records.
Freakbeat came first in the late 80s and was a lysergically-enhanced and unfortunately short-lived magazine that gave page space to a whole load of new psychedelic bands from around the world. Every page required utmost concentration, mostly due to the brain-melting explosion of colours, fractals, patterns and artwork that lay right behind the text. Sometimes it was mind-expanding, other times headache inducing. Always, it was well-written, exhaustively researched and crafted out of a deep love and respect for the music. A flexi-disc was often included showcasing some of the bands interviewed. It soon became clear that a 3 or 4 track flexi disc was not enough to fully explore and promote the new and exciting psychedelic bands that were emerging at that time.

In the early 90s, The Freak Emporium and Delerium Records were born to rectify that situation. Delerium records to get the bands recorded, and the Freak Emporium to distribute them. After initial success with the 'Freakbeat' bands, the Freak Emporium soon expanded into other areas, selling classic psychedelia, punk rock, krautrock, soul, tropicalia, ambient, electronica, avant garde, garage punk, exotica, acid folk, psytrance, black metal and more
. As for Delerium Records, they ended up selling over 250,000 records! Not bad for what was a cottage industry built upon a deep passion for the music they were promoting rather than a love of the filthy lucre.

Sadly, all three are now defunct. Freakbeat magaz
ine was discontinued in 1993 after 8 issues, Delerium records stopped business in 2001, and The Freak Emporium finally and reluctantly closed their doors for the last time in 2007. Reasons? From the website "...eventually, the pressures of corporate business and the stupidity of the British Governement has led to the untimely demise of the business." A sad day indeed, but the memory of Trueman and Allen's endeavours continue to echo within the minds of all those who were lucky enough to have come into contact with them and the great music that they promoted.

5 comments:

richard said...

Thanks for the kind words! Glad we blew some minds...and also refreshing to see that someone appreciates the great amount of stuff we did that ios nothing to do with Porcupine Tree! The Freak Emporium may return...currently fighting the idiots who govern us as the EU. Best Wishes Richard Allen

Herod said...

Richard - The Freak Emporium may return? That's music to my ears! I bought a lot of great stuff from that place and it was a sad day when you were forced to wind things down. I'd love to see you back up and running so all the best with that.

I'm deliberately steering clear of Porcupine Tree. Not that they didn't do some great stuff (in the early days rather than their later output, in my humble opinion) but I don't wanna piss anyone off by posting music by bands still going strong.

Anyway, really good to hear you're still alive and kicking, glad you found my little corner of the internet, and, once again, thanks for all the efforts you guys put in back in the 80s and 90s. Your endeavours and enthusiasm were a really big influence.

Anonymous said...

Hurry up and come back - I want to be involved again. Best job I ever had.

Mike

THE HENCHMAN1 said...

i can't believe i stumbled upon you again after all these years,freakbeat magazine was excellent,tryna read it, looking at the psychedelic pictures,while wearing 3-d glasses & listening to the 7'' ,ahh those were the days.i lost all my issues & flexi's,7" 45's,posters,plus about 7years of freakbeat,psych-garage punk vinyl & other fanzines too [about £8,000 worth] in a fire & i'm still in berevement,never got over losing my vinyl collection,but im happy ive found your fuzzy-freak corner brings back memories.& ive just started to buy cd's in last 2yrs to try & get as many of my records back as i can.don't care what format now just 100% content.thanks 4the flashbacks! johnnygaragepunk.

Hans said...

Hi there,
I've learnt that Cherry Red Records bought the catalogue of Delerium...so we might expect some re-issues in 2011. In fact, the new Delerium compilation is due now in March.
All good news, but is there any possibility of vinyl re-issues? Or are they all going to be CDs....if any?
I would love so see Psychomuzak on vinyl for example !!!!

Last but not least, MUCHAS GRACIAS for this blog and the music.

Psych on!