On Saturday, February 26, the Brisbane/Melbourne-based label Colossus Records are celebrating their first interstate show at The Retreat Hotel. The huge lineup includes the rising post-punk quartet Dust, newly-formed no wave punks Gut Health and the spaghetti western-tinged garage rockers Y Street. Ahead of the show, we caught up with Colossus Records founder Alex Flaskas, who tells us all about the upcoming show and what audiences can expect.
Since 2018, the Brisbane/Melbourne-based label Colossus Records have been rolling out stellar releases ranging between guitar pop and post-punk. Last year, they released the indie rock quartet Girl and Girl's anticipated debut EP, A Typical Friday Night (Shame, Sex & Misery) and hosted numerous showcase concerts and release shows. This weekend, they continue just that by celebrating their first interstate show at The Retreat Hotel on Saturday, February 26. The huge lineup includes the rising post-punk quartet Dust, who will be making their debut at the old pub with support from the newly-formed no-wave outfit Gut Health and the spaghetti western-tinged garage rockers Y Street.
Ahead of the show, we caught up with Colossus Records founder Alex Flaskas, who tells us all about the upcoming show and what audiences can expect.
Paperface Zine: Hey Alex, congrats on putting together your first interstate show! Take me through the origins of Colossus Records and what made you want to start this label back in 2018?
Alex Flaskas: Well it originally started with a friend of mine who isn't involved with the label anymore; our overall vision was to just support the local artists we loved in any way we could (most of them being close friends bands at the time) without any desire for profit, as well as to create a community where these artists can collaborate and interact. There was not really anyone around the Sunshine Coast/Brisbane music scene at the time that was doing that. Since then, I feel like Colossus is beginning to encompass far more than what we originally planned, branching into visual art, photography and publication to name a few things.
What were your inspirations when starting Colossus? What fellow labels did you look up to?
Honestly, not sure where to start. There's so many labels and even artists that influenced me majorly at that time. Most notably labels like Bedroom Sucks and Spoilsport Records, who always have great releases. Another big influence was the Sunshine Coast/Brisbane music scene, which I just love and that motivated me to make Colossus a voice for those artists.
Having begun the label in Brisbane, what has it been like moving to Melbourne and branching out there the past two years?
With the Lockdowns in Melbourne, the last two years have been really hard to progress with the label, we continued being active in the Brisbane scene which was great; putting on a few shows and releasing our first run of vinyl for Girl and Girl. But now that everything seems to be opening up again in Melbourne, it's so relieving to finally branch out with our first interstate show and get some artists that we really love on the lineup. This scene really is incredible and a lot of our favorite artists live here, it's exciting to be a part of and entirely alien to what I knew coming from Brisbane; in particular the immensity of the scene and how celebrated diversity is.
Colossus provides a variety of resources including your own photography skills and even having a private studio for its artists. How important is this for artists to reach their creative potential and for the label to reach a wider audience?
That really is one of our number one priorities — making sure our artists can create the way they want to and backing that all the way. We've been really lucky to have a crew within Colossus that all contribute a vast range of skills and expand the label to become more than what I could have imagined on my own (shoutout to Bryce, Aiden, Pete and Michael). As for artists, having all those outlets in one place to create their art in the image they see it, is just something I feel is so crucial.
Tell me a bit about this interstate show that's occurring this weekend. What was your vision initially and how did the plans come into fruition?
It started when Dust hit us up to organize a show in Melbourne and I've been wanting to for a few years now, but with the lockdowns our plans got pushed back a few times. Dust played one of our events in Brisbane last year, and the reception was amazing! I love their work and the opportunity was just perfect. A few weeks beforehand, I saw Gut Health at The Retreat and was totally blown away... Something just clicked immediately, that made me want to get them for a show and here it is! As for Y Street, I've seen them a few times and their energy is really unreal, it was a no-brainer for me to get them. The energy in all these bands is what attracted me initially, their music translates incredibly to a live show. It's so hard-hitting and generally just a fun time. I personally think they're some of the best local live acts, it's really great having them all on one show for me. Then picking the venue was easy, I've only had good memories at The Retreat, so it was the first venue I gravitated towards.
What are you most excited for about the show and what can the audience expect?
Expect a safe, inclusive, high energy atmosphere and some of Melbourne's best acts in one night.
What else can we expect from Colossus Records in 2022?
We've got a big year, definitely our biggest year yet, there's so much I'd want to spill right now... We're venturing on a lot of new and exciting paths for the label, and there's some big announcements coming soon!
For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.