Alternative Tentacles


Alternative Tentacles

Infobox record label
name = Alternative Tentacles


image_bg =
parent =
founded = 1979
founder = Jello Biafra East Bay Ray
defunct =
distributor = Revolver USA
genre = Punk rock Alternative rock Spoken word
country = United States
location = San Francisco, California
url = http://www.alternativetentacles.com

Alternative Tentacles is an independent record label based in San Francisco, California and was established in 1979. It was originally used as the label name by the Dead Kennedys for the self-produced single "California Über Alles," and after realizing the potential for an independent label, they released records for other bands as well. Dead Kennedys guitarist East Bay Ray and vocalist Jello Biafra formed the original Alternative Tentacles partnership, but the label is now run by Biafra, who became the sole owner in the mid-1980s. [ [http://www.phillaw.com/html/dkappeal.html “Dead Kennedys v. Jello Biafra”] ]

Early influence

Alternative Tentacles went on to launch some of the most original bands of the alternative/punk scene including releasing records (which were later released by other labels) by bands including The Dicks, 7 Seconds, and the Butthole Surfers. The early compilation titled Let Them Eat Jellybeans served to introduce American punk to the rest of the world.

Through innovative bands such as the Dead Kennedys, NoMeansNo, D.O.A. and Alice Donut the label became a prominent figure in the American art/music underground.

In addition to musical acts, Alternative Tentacles also publishes spoken word albums, many by Jello Biafra himself. Another common theme of Alternative Tentacles records over the years has been the long-standing artwork of Winston Smith, which has graced many of their records, catalogs, posters, and shirts. Smith also designed the Alternative Tentacles logo.

Legal trouble

In 1987, Los Angeles prosecutors charged Biafra with "distributing harmful matter to minors" for artwork contained in the Dead Kennedys album "Frankenchrist". The artwork was a poster reproduction of the painting , also known as "Penis Landscape" by Swiss painter H.R. Giger. The case ended in a hung jury; charges were not re-filed. A detailed account of the trial is presented by Biafra on his second spoken word album, High Priest of Harmful Matter − Tales from the Trial.

In early 2000, the label and Biafra were named in a lawsuit brought by his former Dead Kennedys bandmates. The suit claimed that Biafra had failed to pay the band royalties on Dead Kennedys albums. The end result of the case saw the rights to the albums turned over to the other band members, who licensed them to Manifesto Records in the United States (and to other labels in the rest of the world). The taking away of the Dead Kennedys album meant that the label struggled to get back on its feet, since the biggest sales it had were DK albums.

In October 2002, the label moved to Emeryville, California.

Artists

Current artists

* Mumia Abu-Jamal
* Akimbo
* Alice Donut
* Black Kali Ma
* Jello Biafra
* BlöödHag
* Blowfly
* Burning Image
* Noam Chomsky
* Ward Churchill
* Creeps On Candy
* Crucifucks
* Dash Rip Rock
* D.O.A.
* Drunk Injuns
* The Evaporators
* eX-Girl
* The Green Goblyn Project
* Facepuller
* F-Minus
* The False Prophets
* The Flaming Stars
* Fleshies
* Half Japanese
* I Object
* Knights of the New Crusade
* Leftöver Crack
* Life After Life
* Los Olvidados
* Ludicra
* Munly (and the Lee Lewis Harlots)
* Nardwuar the Human Serviette
* Nausea
* Pansy Division
* Part Time Christians
* Pilot Scott Tracy
* Report Suspicious Activity
* Skarp
* Slim Cessna's Auto Club
* SNFU
* Triclops!
* Turn Me on Dead Man
* The Yuppie Pricks
* Howard Zinn
* Zolar X

Former artists

* Amebix
* Brujeria
* Brutal Juice
* Butthole Surfers
* The Causey Way
* Comets on Fire
* Dead Kennedys (But rare copies of Nazi Punks Fuck Off! are still available on vinyl.)
* The Dicks
* God Bullies
* Grotus
* Lard
* The Melvins
* M.I.A.
* Neurosis
* Nomeansno
* No WTO Combo
* The Phantom Limbs
* Thrall
* Toxic Reasons
* Tribe 8
* Wesley Willis

Footnotes

External links

* [http://www.alternativetentacles.com Official site]

ee also

* List of record labels
* Virus 100


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