Indie Label Young And Lost Club

The legendary record label dissects five years of musical ups and downs and, once and for all, defines what the word 'indie' means today

Music Incoming
Photo by Tom Cockram
Since setting up in 2005, record label and club night Young and Lost Club has been the home to practically every self-respecting indie band to emerge from the capital, launching the careers of Good Shoes, Bombay Bicycle Club and Golden Silvers. Their half-century of seven inches have seen hits and misses in equal measure: the good-time skiffle pop of Vincent Vincent and the Villains and the wistful, sizzled calypso-punk of Larrikin Love falling by the wayside whilst Noah and the Whale and Johnny Flynn have spearheaded a revival in British folk. Dazed caught up with Nadia Dahlawi and Sara Jade and got them to spill the beans on the last five years.

Dazed Digital: Out of the fifty singles, pick your favorite A-side and favourite B-side.
Nadia Dahlawi: I love all the singles we have put out but i especially loved 'Oh Minnows' single 'Might' from his debut EP. I also love 'Exlover's' b-side 'Weightless'.
Sara Jade: My favourite a-side is Noah and the Whale's "5 Years Time", it still amazes me that it was their first single, it was such a great beginning for them. My favourite b-side is New Moscow's "Go Rebel Go" it has such a timeless feel to it and to me it feels kind of hypnotic.

DD: Favourite artwork?
Nadia Dahlawi: My favourite artwork was 'Johnny Flynn & The Sussex Wits' first single 'Tickle Me Pink.' Johnny's girlfriend painted it herself and I love the mouse and cat duelling!
Sara Jade: I love the Planet Earth artwork by Francois Marry, he did watercolour paintings of film stills. The "What More" sleeve is from The Red Shoes, one of my favourite films.

DD: Favourite YALC gig?
Nadia Dahlawi: My favorite Y&L gig was our summer boat party about three years ago, Jamie T, Late Of The Pier and Rumble Strips all played. The boat was meant to be putting on a series of gigs that summer but our crowd gave it such a battering they had to cancel the rest!
Sara Jade: Mine was the Vincent Vincent and the Villains single launch at the old Push Bar on Dean St. It was so crammed with people and a great party atmosphere. All our friends complained we had picked a venue too small.

DD: What does the term 'indie' mean to you in 2010?
Sara Jade: We realise that to some people 'indie' will always be linked into 2005, with skinny ties and leather jackets... To us though it has always meant an independent attitude, and being involved with bands that you love just because you like their music, whatever type of music that happens to be. Our history of eclectic releases shows this to be true of Y&L Club.

DD: Which single released over the last five years would you have loved to release on Young and Lost?
Nadia Dahlawi: That's a tough question! We were so excited by The Strokes early releases like "Hard To Explain", that there were new bands making music influenced by the bands we had grown up loving. I'd say the same about the first Interpol and Yeah Yeah Yeah's EP too.

DD: Which labels / label people have inspired you the most?
Sara Jade: We always looked up to Rough Trade as a label, they had such a strong brand and history while always staying current.
Nadia Dahlawi: "Please Kill Me" (the oral history of Punk by Legs McNeill and GIllian McCain) was a huge influence on us too, everyone in that  book just went out and started things for themselves, no matter how young they were.

DD: Are there plans for more albums after the success of Noah and the Whale?
Nadia Dahlawi: We are planning a lot more albums in the next couple of years.
Planet Earth's debut album will be out this winter and will be produced by Charlie from Noah and the Whale.
Sara Jade: Noah and the Whale will also release their third album next year, and we have an album from Oh Minnows out soon. Chris in Oh Minnows was formerly in Semifinalists, and he's written and recorded an album entirely by himself, playing all the parts himself.
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