Thursday, January 28, 2016

Front cover dilemma – Greg Puciato (The Dillinger Escape Plan, The Black Queen)

One might think, when you get an interview with such a demanded rock star, getting a front cover image, would be a piece of cake. Well, no and can we blame labels, promo teams, photographers, economy, ethics or god for that? Lil bit of each.

The interview with Greg on Brutal Assault festival last summer was great fun and we talked about their wild shows, insane music, but also his side activities in The Black Queen. Dark ambient project, with occasional 80’s pop inputs, could be a hell of shock to most TDEP fans, but in all seriousness, it’s one of the best music, I’ve heard in years. 

After the interview we went to see THE show. You know, what I’m talking about – climbing, falling, crowd surfing and throwing gear. At one point Greg, found a dude in the first line, who knew the songs really well. Greg threw him a mic, guy sang a bit and threw him the mic back. At that time, it came to my mind that I also have to interview the band’s tech. It must be a nightmare, I thought. And for what he told me in an interview, it is like taking care of bunch of wild animals.

Great material without packaging

So what do you do now? First you go to the label, which is in our case Sumerian records. Result - only horizontal band pics both TDEP and The Black Queen. Secondly, try their promo team, my long term partners - Pirate Smile. They have even more pics, from all those years, including cool live pics, but there is the same problem. While you wait for them to check their archives, go for a solo search.

Big brother Google can find you a lot of useful stuff, like an old archive of pics on a Season of Mist label's presskit, from the days TDEP was with them. (However like the one lower, it's not big enough) Internet provides a lot more, however for the front cover, you need to get a permission to use it. There are great pics, like the ones here on the sides. But here comes the tricky part...

Everything that is provided by labels or promo agencies, is free to use, however if they don’t provide stuff u need, you need to get into negotiations with corporate press agencies or photographers who need that money, more than Reuters, who were in the game for a blood pic. Photographers ask for huge prices (like the one with Greg on the stairs), where agencies are fine to negotiate, based on the circulation of the magazine. Muzikus has a long history, stable readers, but a small budget. Luckily, we made a fair deal with KT Wright of NegativeOne Photography, who took this great pic above for a February issue of Muzikus. Luckily we didn't have to worry about a question in the office: "Can we even show a blood on the front cover?" 

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