Vienna’s new Label AMEN Empowers Artists to Crush their Boundaries

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Community-based new label AMEN releases its first compilation. Read about the genesis of the Viennese label by visual artist Aleksandar Vucenovic.

Subculture develops in and around scenes with their own rooms, structures, labels, and rules. By definition the term “scene” describes WHAT happens in subcultural circles and WHERE. Rooms distinguish themselves by being dynamic – and always require to be seen as dependent on the factor time. The Greenwich Village, the Carnaby Street, the Chelsea Hotel, the CBGB – there, the right characters met at the right place at the right time to write history of music and art. If one wasn’t already there, one had to move. And for those who couldn’t move, all there was left in order to participate was consumption – listening to the radio, buying vinyls, reading Zines. Today, there are new gateways. While it used to be customary to meet at SO36 in Westberlin, today it is YouTube. An internet connection offers the possibility to identify, connect, and work artistically with equal-minded peers in taste, sexuality, fashion, and music to everybody – even in the smallest hicktown.

The genesis of the label AMEN is exemplary for it, founded by Viennese Visual-Artist Aleksandar Vucenovic. In 2013, Aleksandar started to upload music videos on YouTube for befriended musician under the pseudonym “Sir Amen”. He collected the footage from other videos and placed it in a new context. These progressive music videos caught the attention of new artists and brought forward first jobs. After YouTube tightened its copyright policies and blocked some videos, he started to create his own 3D-contents. Projects with the curator and event organiser Marlene Engels and the Dogfood Musicgroup additionally supported the foundation in his native city.

No Matter How Heavy the Chains Are

The growing number of contacts and jobs gave Aleksander the idea to move the project away from mere video production and towards the community. By founding the mix-series AMEN on SoundCloud, he had created the base for his new project. Initially, befriended artists were represented there, but were soon joined by musicians out of his immediate circle. That was the final impulse which led to the launch of the label AMEN at the beginning of this year.

The label is a symbiosis of diverse talents and promotes young artists without restriction of genre, gender, sexuality, or skin color. The connection of participants in fighting against the every-day limitations in the artist’s way of life relates to the logo of AMEN which shows chained-up angels’ wings. The members define their cooperation in terms of friendship, shared interests, and the wish to overcome their own boundaries.

On October 23rd, the first AMEN Compilation was released. Here is the track list:

Dviance & The Sow – If Your Right Eye Makes You Stumble
111X – I Wish Tomorrow Everything Would Be Fine But I Know Nothing Will Change
SCHISM – 2 Hearts
My Sword – Ignis
Battle-Ax – I Don’t Wanna
Exit Sense – Venus In Furs (Black Mage Mix)
FAITHFUL – Lost Incantation (Forgotten In Your Wake)
Salon and Cough – Femme Varie / Love Funeral Fertile Earth
Fauna – Liberata
Iku – They Call Me A Thief

The EP “Kapuze/Nokturn” (PRAYER0001) by producer HNRK was already released on September 30th.

Text by Christian Glatz
Translated by Lisa Thalmeier