Interview With A Blogger: Bjorn from Discobelle

In our newest interview series, Interview With A Blogger, Musformation attempts to get in the minds of music bloggers to find out what makes them tick, how they look at music and how artists and bloggers can better communicate. 

We couldn’t be more excited to be kicking off our blog interview series with Bjorn Jeffery from the amazing blog Discobelle.  Based out of Sweden, Discobelle has been a cutting edge resource for electronic music for going on four years now.  Recently, Discobelle has even branched out and created a digital record label (sample one of their free tracks here), further spreading their already impressive influence.   Without further delay follow us after the jump as we get down and detailed with the ever so polite purveyors of modern DJ culture over at Discobelle.  

1. Tell us about the preferred way that you receive music from bands. 

The worst is mass emails with all the blogs email addresses in the “To:”-field saying “YOOOOOOO PLZ POST MY MASHUP”. You’d be amazed how many fall into that category. The opposite would be something personal and exclusive. That’s how you start to build a relationship that is beneficial for both parties. Regarding descriptions and such, that’s more a newspaper thing. Trying to describe audio in text is really like describing scent with music. It doesn’t work. And it doesn’t have to either, since you can just listen to the track straight away. That’s why we don’t review or write in lengthy detail, it just gets in the way of the song.

2. We’ve seen that Discobelle uses Soundcloud – a site we recommend to a lot of our readers. How has your experience been with that?

It works well and has developed into a a really tight system. We know the founders of Soundcloud and had discussions with them regarding functionality before there was even a beta version. They’ve done a good job in listening to their community.

3. Considering how many people read Discobelle, you probably see a lot of press releases from bands.  What kinds of things in press releases do you like to see and what makes your job easier?

Keep it short, keep it personal, keep it fresh. And an interesting picture. If it is good, it will speak for itself.

4. Press releases and band bios are something many bands are notoriously bad at doing.  What kind of mistakes do you see bands making with that and what sort of advice can you give for improvement?

First off something has to be newsworthy to begin with, otherwise no one will ever read the following releases. And once it is – you have to present it in such a way that you understand what’s really going on – the bigger picture and what’s actually new. This may be slightly different for magazines that write a lot, but that’s how we view it.

5. There are so many bands out there now…  what elements do you see in new music that really gets you excited and makes you want to write and tell other people?

It’s hard to define it in terms of elements, it’s more a gut feeling. You just know when something has it or not, I think everyone has felt that way.

6. How important is a band photo?  Is it something can really turns you on/off to a band?

For sure, it can be a good reason to give something a shot. It portrays what the band or DJ is trying to communicate.

7. Do you see any remaining purpose for new unsigned bands to press CD’s?

No, there is hardly any point in signed bands to do that. We just launched our own record label Discobelle Records but we will only be doing digital releases. Once in a while, there might be a specific physical copy for something – but as a rule we won’t. For our audience and niche, there’s simply no need.

8.  There are a lot of new streaming music players right now.  Which one have you found to have the best sound quality/ease of use?

Our Swedish friends at Spotify are hard to beat when it comes to functionality and ease of use. However, they lack the latest tracks due to long label processes.

9. Does persistence pay off or does it just annoy you?

If it’s done well and in a nice manner, it might. But like I said before – you have to think whether this is really new and interesting enough. Very few have consistently interesting stuff coming out every week.

10. There is so much great music out there right now and you guys always seem to be one of the first to report on it.  Besides bands contacting you, what’s your strategy for staying up to date on exciting new music?

You spend a lot of time listening, reading and discussing. You find you own filters that work for you, and hopefully can be a filter for some others.