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Iron Age Frontman Uses Time Off for Cyclopean Records

Hilary J. Corts

It’s not that Cyclopean Records is new; it’s just that the Austin, Texas based label was originally founded by Iron Age vocalist Jason Tarpey solely to release their ‘Sleeping Eye’ album on vinyl. Since then, the label has laid dormant as Tarpey was off on tour. But with the band home for a while, Cyclopean Records is in full force. “I decided I would start to take Cyclopean to another level while I have the time,” Tarpey told Noisecreep via e-mail. “Now I have five new records coming out, which are all ripping and deserving of attention.”

The first two releases to surface will be an EP from Slaughter Strike (out now) and a new full-length of ’70s psychedelia from Sungod (out soon). Releases featuring hometowners Mammoth Grinder and the Roller are slated for later this year.

For all these releases, Tarpey is keeping things old school and DIY — what he knows best. “I’m just too stuck in my ways to change the way I do things,” he wrote. “I’ve been handwriting labels and sending stuff out manually since I was in my first band in the ’90s, and I like it that way, the personal touch.

“Furthermore, I’m not afraid to reveal my ignorance and unfamiliarity with technology and the Internet. I only have a computer so I can operate a record label, otherwise I would chunk it off a cliff. But I must communicate, and to make people aware of my doings, I have to become more of a presence online, for that I have some friends to help (thanks to Brian from Mammoth Grinder and Solid). Now people will be seeing more of us as this slew of releases comes out, I probably should learn to print out shipping labels.”

If you’re expecting these releases to get the digipak or slim CD case, you’re never going to see it. “If I was a person that bought CDs I would probably press some, but I’m a record collector and that’s what I’m interested in, so I’ll stick with that.” Digital copies will also be available, though.

Cassette versions will be released on Next Level Records, a label he founded but then traded for autographed copies of ‘Leprosy’ and ‘Spiritual Healing’ by Death. A worthwhile trade, indeed.

With the whole year of the label planned out, Cyclopean Records can’t just be pushed to the wayside as it was before. Tarpey promises that won’t happen again. “In the future, and before I leave on tour again, I will leave the business in some one else’s capable hands.”

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