Earlier today, Exotype [currently signed to Rise Records] released their new single “Stand Up”, dedicated to the victims of the Pulse Nightclub terrorist attack in their hometown of Orlando, Florida. The attack was the deadliest mass shooting in modern US history and it deeply impacted the band.
Below is an editorial written by Exotype vocalist Steven McCorry regarding their relationship with Rise Records and the label’s alleged refusal to promote their music or their band. Rise Records has removed Exotype from their official artist roster on their website, though they are still selling their music and receiving royalties for it.
“Attention bands, and musicians alike! Lets talk a little bit about the music industry, shall we? Let’s talk about what can happen when you dedicate your time, energy, career, and life to your music and art.
Rewind to 2014. Our single “Nanovirus” gains the attention of “record label” Rise Records. Our excitement, and pace becomes a blur. Emails are flying back and forth, good vibes and high morale all around. We sign the contract, and we’re assigned a dream team of individuals who will make decisions and shape the direction of our careers and future. We’re offered an amazing tour with The Amity Affliction, and we’re playing to sold out crowds every night. We record what we believe to be a kick ass record with super producer Joey Sturgis, and are gaining some good momentum. Then it all goes down hill.
Phase one of their plan to control and manipulate us comes in the form of our logo and branding. They didn’t like it, and wanted us to change it. We held our ground, especially after some of our members got the logo tattooed on our hands. Its a brand we believe in, and something we put a lot of time and effort into developing. When our contract and negotiations were taking place, there was a lot of talk for a radio program for us. Yet, Wide Awake is the first single we were forced to release? If you’ve heard Wide Awake, it’s dreadfully apparent that it wouldn’t be on the radio anytime soon, but we listened. On the aforementioned Amity Affliction tour, the tour coincided with our first week of album release. Yet it’s strange, we didn’t have any pressed CD’s to sell whatsoever on the tour.
By reasonably calculating the tour attendees with the amount of fabric merch we sold, we estimate our first week sales would have been upwards of 1000 MORE than we sold. We never got another leveraged tour from Rise Records as a result of our lower than usual first week sales, as a result of bad planning and execution on behalf of Rise Records.
Lets talk about how Rise Records abandoned us, as well as the reason we are no longer on the label. On that very same Amity Affliction tour, we employed a tour manager. After picking him up in texas and playing a few dates, we receive a text from Craig Ericson stating that said tour manager is “cancer” and to “leave him on the side of the road”.
Ummmm no, sorry. That’s a human being. Come to find out, Craig had some personal beef YEARS back with this individual that has NOTHING to do with Exotype. We told him that we would no longer employ him on the tour and that he needn’t worry about it any longer. Plus, with a 150 dollar per night guaruntee we could barely afford to eat, much less pay for a plane ticket to send the guy home, so he remained on the road as a passenger with us. People talk, and word got back to craig that we didnt leave him in the desert of Arizona at a gas station, and what followed could best be described as a grown man having a temper tantrum.
He pulled us off upcoming tour plans, including warped tour and said things such as “guess you want to ruin your relationship with your label, time to learn your lesson”.
From then on, Rise Records refused to repost any updates from our band. Nothing from Facebook or any other social media [platforms]. They assigned us a day to day manager to slowly feather us into the dirt. We were offered no more tour support, and were completely abandoned. As a result of not having our label back us any longer, we lost our agent, as well as our management, and were left to die. We offered out of the kindness of our hearts to fund and execute a music video for our song STAND UP, which Rise agreed to repost on social media and push, as our last offering on Rise Records.
AP [Alternative Press] released it exclusively, and Rise reposted it from their Facebook page. Only, there was a little gear icon next to the post instead of the normal “world” icon. They reposted it so only we could see it. To shut us up. They PURPOSEFULLY went out of their way to ensure that only we saw it, and no one else.
Keep in mind, this is a video we DEDICATED TO THE VICTIMS OF THE PULSE SHOOTING in our hometown of Orlando. It’s a video we put a lot of money and effort into making, to raise awareness of the horrible atrocities that took place, and to inspire people to stand up for themselves and what they believe in. Rise chose to let personal interfere with business, and rob the music community of that video just to spite us. Frankly, that’s disgusting.
We are going harder than ever now, because that’s all we know. We have a single coming out shortly, co produced by Joey Sturgis and Matt Johnson, with subsequent visual media to follow. We have an agent, and we have a manager. We aren’t going anywhere and we will continue to have a voice. We aren’t afraid to speak, and we aren’t afraid to Stand Up for what we believe in.
Fuck Rise Records.”
We have reached out to Rise Records for comment and will update this story when we receive one.
Below, you can see Exotype’s new music video [UPDATE: The video has been privatized.] — dedicated to the victims of the Pulse Nightclub terror attack in their hometown of Orlando. You can purchase the song here.