Our sound since 98.

The short version:
Formed in 1998, Canada's D-TRASH Records started as an online collective by members of CPUWAR and DJ RABIES as the beginnings of an international network of exciting and extreme electronic music artists. In 2000, the group formed into an official record label, headed by D-TRASH artist SCHIZOID, the label now coming forth with pressed CD releases for sale in stores; as well, continuing the practice of releases of full-length albums through the internet as MP3 for download. The label sprouted with artists based in many parts of the world, whose material was getting such acclaim and press from KERRANG, TERRORIZER, ROCK SOUND, and INDUSTRIAL NATION - In 2003 D-TRASH Records CDs were picked up for a North American distribution deal with infamous German label DIGITAL HARDCORE RECORDINGS through CAROLINE Distribution, as well as  many D-TRASH artists also appearing on the 3xCD DHR compilation "Don't Fuck With Us". To date in 2008, its 10th year of business, the label has put out 8 professionally pressed CDs and 1 DVD available in stores/distros worldwide and have released roughly 120 full length albums (with artwork) available for MP3 download on the http://www.dtrashrecords.com site. 

"For those who know it, it needs no introduction. Probably the best Digital Hardcore label nowadays. All releases available online (something to admire in current times), and many of them are top quality stuff. Breakcore/Speedcore/Digital Hardcore/Noise/Dark Ambient/IDM. This label shows everything packed under a form of irreverence and mostly, anti-commercial feeling. Worth listening and supporting!"  Discogs.com User Comment

But beyond that, what is the story, so to speak of DTRASH?  We had never really documented our progress until after 3 years after 'DTRASH' was first shouted into a microphone.  The only word on our label was courtesy of the label manifesto written sometime two years or more ago and published inside our 5th release.  A lot of people ask us 'what's happened so far' - now we've put it down in print.

DTRASH started out in the Fall of 1998 when CPUWAR and DJ RABIES (originally known as 2 man project AK-47) learned of each others music and felt that times were changing and a new collective/label might kick start something in the minds of electronic youths across N. America.  Brodie and Mike (then of CPUWAR) coined the phrase DTRASH and released an EP that pretty much did nothing.  A release followed a month later by Zak of AK-47 which had limited success in the band's hometown of Boulder, Colorado.  The idea of the label at that point was to use DTRASH as a uniting element that would expose AK-47 to CPUWAR's fans and vice versa.  Both bands needed exposure in a bad way and this was an effective strategy.

Things eventually began to snowball and through a lot of hard work, people around the world were buying limited amounts of our first releases. Brodie, Mike and Zak (both still in high school) were busy listening to music from all kinds of kids and inviting them to take part in the label.  Kids in Europe and the USA were learning of the label through the internet and a few acts like RENEGADE ANDROID, ENSC were recording for DTRASH.  Things were getting hectic for those in charge, music was being recorded at an astonishing pace and record label matters were cutting into recording time.

In the first months of 1999 the work involved with the label was more than Brodie, Mike or Zak could personally deal with.  Jason (the mind behind SCHIZOID) came aboard and had an immediate impact generating prospects for the label.  1999 brought an increased amount of exposure.  BASTARDS UNITED played large festivals throughout their country, SCHIZOID appeared on a Brutal Truth tribute compilation, CPUWAR released a 12" in Germany on kool.POP recordings and people around the world were really getting excited about our label.

That same year, DTRASH began distribution across N.America and people were finally able to buy our CDs in a store like all those other old fashioned labels out there.  It was actually pretty weird for us at first because we didn't have the slightest idea how to run the label financially.  Things were admittedly very unprofessional. DTRASH was growing but could we keep up with it?  Many businesses didn't want to deal with us; we were too much of a risk.  Hell, we were a liability - can't lie about that one.  Everything was random, chaotic and our releases made the perfect soundtrack of our lives during that time.

By the time the new millenium came, we were becoming involved in things we couldn't even deal with.  We wanted huge distribution and we actually got it.  The problem was that we weren't even close to being ready to deal with it.  In the end, there were huge contracts, lawyer fees and legal issues we weren't able to face yet.  It was reality check time.  The label wasn't able to sustain itself based upon CDR releases alone and all of us wanted DTRASH to keep moving.  Around this time Zak decided to part company with DTRASH and focus on his new Cassandra Datakill project with other record labels.  We kept believing in DTRASH and it was time to make a higher investment to keep growing.

In 2000 we formed two avenues of major release through the record label. DTRASH Technologies was specifically created for pressed, official DTRASH releases. DTRASH Records will continue to support young electronic artists and bands (we will always have a whole new army of DTRASH youths ready to put out a whack of new releases). A lot of record labels want to pretend that they're actually doing something for the kids out there but we're the ones actually doing it. We'll always be here to put out dangerous, exciting music that you can't hear anywhere else. 

DTECH (the Technologies sub-label) kicked off in the Summer of 2000 with SCHIZOID's 2nd album 'All Things Are Connected'. This was a milestone in our struggle. CDrs and MP3s were great, and are still used today as part of the artillery, but ultimately to move to the next level, we needed a professional release to market. This release surpassed all our expectations, and was hailed with positive and encouraging press. The single “Grim Prospects” from this release, spawned a remix album which saw contributions from over 70 different artists to date. With DTECH01, we learned a lot about the more “official” side of things in the music industry, and how things really work (in the best and worst ways). The original plan for DTECH01 was a 12" compilation that was botched when difficulties broke out between artists on the label (caused just as much by the chaos of 1999). That compilation, DTECH03, was to happen later on down the road.

2001 kicked off and was unrelentless – With the last original founding member Brodie b57 off to pursue various interests, DTRASH was now officially in the hands of Jason/Schizoid.  February brought us dtrashrecords.com’s official launch, and from there, the 2nd wave was underway, with a new roster of artists who wanted to take part, including memorable releases from EXIST, CONTRA, VENOM8888, KNAR. Our bands were now out there, touring, playing shows, being offered remixes of our tracks, having CD release parties, appearing on other label’s pressed CD compilations, getting the opening spots for some of our favorite bands, and even receiving press in some of our all-time favorite magazines. The international scene was accounted for, we now figured we needed to do some work in our own backyard, more specifically Ontario, Canada, where local DTRASH operations were happening place more and more. 

Planning and organizing hard-electronic events, actively seeking local distribution and adopting a guerilla-style DIY promotional approach helped us establish a name locally, after many years of writing off our own region as a potential for this virus to spread. When Daniel Ross of UNITUS from Toronto hooked up with us and we heard his material, we were stunned. This was where we wanted to go. His material was more reminiscent of early-1980’s classic industrial, rather than the late 1990’s distorted/broken-beat sound that we were affiliated with. Ross was serious about making a contribution to the label, and wasn’t interested in posing or wasting our time, and joined the DTRASH administrative team. 

We burst our way into 2002 with a high profile, and many many things planned. The 3rd wave of DTRASH was now underway, with releases from UNITUS, F_NOISE, BUREAU DE CHANGE, STUNTROCK gracing our catalogue. DTECH02, UNITUS’ “Cross Contamination” album was released in February and has already received great reviews in the underground and mainstream press. Persistence has paid off, with DTRASH achieving literal worldwide distribution, something we always aimed for in our early incarnations, but never deserved until now. We have CDs in stores in North America, and for sale online, thanks to a deal made with  the infamous Digital Hardcore Recordings label.  On top of that, many DTRASH artists and alumni appeared on their “Don’t Fuck With Us!” 3XCD compilation of North America’s finest underground artists. This was something very special to us, proving that our hard work and efforts have paid off, to be acknowledged like this, by some of our direct influences. In a way, this release marked DTRASH’s coming of age, we’d come full circle. Years ago, we never would have imagined that this was possible, we knew we were on the right track. 

Now that the compilation CD was out, we were excited, but know ultimately that the future holds even more in store. It’s was time to reassess where we’re at, and achieve even higher accomplishments as artists, as a label, and now, as a tangible scene. We’d changed our web site’s introductory graphic with the by-line that previously read “Somewhere in North America…” to “Somewhere in Canada…” Maybe it was old-fashioned Canuck modesty, but we weren’t sure about affirming our geographical base like this in the past. The fragmented and international nature of our Internet presence left us without a real home country to hail from. We are proud that Canada is now thought of as a major exporter of this style of music, when Toronto is talked about with the same reverence as London UK or Berlin - it's a great feeling. 

Since then, we kept at it, and our plans for a comprehensive pressed CD release happened in 2003, culminating in "Rising Tide" compilation, DTECH03.  It featured new, exclusive (and probably the best example of what we are about) tracks from all of the current DTRASH roster, and it was a great point in time for us, having hit the 5 year mark.   We hit the #50 releases mark of our popular MP3 releases, and did it extravagantly with a three! 3CD release from our new friends HANSEL who were busting their asses to promote their DTRASH42 cd which they later ended up re-releasing and pressing as a professional CD.   We got our first "live" album in the form of a disc from European biggie's PUNISH YOURSELF who've shared the stage with almost every band out there that we like from Europe.   SCHIZOID's "Covered In Metal" disc bridged the gap between the DTRASH sound and the heavy metal scene, and the metal scene reciprocated, with LETHAL AGGRESSION lending backup vocals to a cover, and CANDIRU giving us a disc of unreleased material which ended up coming out in 2004.  This was the point where our influences not only were working with us, but directly getting involved.  What a great feeling, with also a CD of remixes approved by the band THE SHIZIT, the band commenting the tracks were better than their versions at times.  

In 2005, we continued with the pressed CD releases with CONTRA's "Enter The Winter", our 4th professionally pressed CD which went on to receive reviews of praise from KERRANG, THE WIRE, TERRORIZER.  2005 also saw the addition of a Music Videos section, to expose the great multimedia endeavours the bands have got into.  For the digital releases this is the busiest year yet with all the DTRASH60's and DTRASH70's in one year alone with no drought of exciting material to put out - the 4th wave of DTRASHcore strikes with THE PHOERON, FAUX PRIDE, BABYLON DISCO, CTRLER, SANGRE, CUTTING PINK WITH KNIVES, HYPERDRIVER, HATESTAR, plus releases from longtime members SCHIZOID, and CPUWAR in there somewhere...

The 5th DTECH CD release from EVESTUS from Estonia started off 2006.  Years ago we never thought we'd get to a 5th pressed CD release and now we've unleash Ott EVESTUS' compelling sounds onto the world...  Also this year, we started a sub-label called CONTRA RECORDINGS, with all kinds of unique material from E.Coli aka CONTRA, providing a different slice of electronic sounds - that's not to the great releases that have made up the DTRASH80s.. and soon DTRASH90's!   The best of 2006 was yet to come - In September 2006 we threw a CD release party for the release of HANSEL's "Lorentzian Lineshaper" album, DTECH06.  This was a festival of digital hardcore where we had HANSEL from Boston, PHALLUS UBER ALLES (a great band from Detroit we love from FATAL RECORDINGS) and SCHIZOID, UNITUS play sets.  It was a rare coming together of some of the D-TRASH board members and was great to announce the HANSEL disc with a bang!  Our 2nd pressed CD in the same year, definitely promising times for the label with this album now being released to the public as of this history edit... 

2007 started off with a blast with high profile releases from HEARTWORM, 64REVOLT, PANIC DHH and BABYLON DISCO, with the MP3 D-TRASH release #'s approaching our 100th release (more on that soon!).  The big event of the year was unveiling the ATARI TEENAGE RIOT tribute album on May 1st 2007 - years ago it would have been so wrong for a label like D-TRASH to do this type of thing, but at this point, there is so much going on in the range of sound of our artists, that as musicians we did this more for amusement, than pure emulation. 

Our 10th year was as much a reason for endless celebrations and reflections to the past as it was just another year doing our thang.   We reached our 100th release milestone at the latest of 2007, but 2008 made sense to hype since it was always our 10 year birthday.   And what did we do?  
A) Something we'd been planning a long long time, a Music Videos DVD - to show that D-TRASH isn't just
  an internet thing, it's a living breathing collection of punx from across the world who are live and in the
  flesh and ready to fuck you up with their sound.  This DVD is our proudest moment, and the ultimate release
  for any fan who has been around hearing our tunes for the last years, as the DVD's jukebox part has a
  slideshow of all DTRASH01-99's artwork and best songs (3 hours of music!). 
B)  We had the most amount of digital download releases that we had in any year with some months,
  reaching 5 simultaneous releases in one of 2008's months, with quality discs from some old friends like
  KNAR, HYPERDRIVER, FAUX PRIDE, THE PHOERON, but again starting the year with many new friends
C) September 2008 saw the first official D-TRASH FEST in Toronto, featuring all D-TRASH artists from around the world.   It was a brilliant night to see all these people who were all a part of this thing we've had going for 10 years now, some old and new friends like PRINCESSE ROTATIVE, NWODTLEM, MEAT PARADE, PHALLUS UBER ALLES, HANSEL, SCHIZOID, UNITUS, THE FIRST SEED.  At one point it was said "Everyone in the place who's been on DTRASH give a w00t!" and to hear dozens of screaming voices was something that would have made anyone smile who was back from the 1st generation.

We first started out very naively, ultimately learning along the way from our mistakes and successes, existing as a premier provider of underground electronic music through the internet and in record stores. We're definitely not another generic label; we've gone about things in a completely different manner than anyone else. It’s something to be proud of when you're in your early twenties (some of us are much older, and much younger these days) and a part of something so special. It might be cool to read about, but listen to our tracks and we're sure you'll be surprised. DTRASH is all about music in the end. DTRASH. Our sound since 98. It’s been good and will keep getting better. Oh yeah.

authors: Jason SCHIZOID,  Brodie CPUWAR
NOV 2008 Last Edit