Firekills Lands Deal With Abacus Recordings

By Rachel Laskow
Taxi Band Lands Deal
When Firekills manager Karl Louis, met with representatives from Abacus, he only had to play one of the band's songs, he didn't make it through the second. Twenty seconds into the second song, the owner of Abacus stopped it and told Karl that his band had a deal.

"That's how I knew I was with the right people," Karl said.

Abacus is a new record label division from Century Media Records that was created for acts that aren't metal and can cross over. Firekills joins Juliana Theory and Turbonegro as Abacus acts, who all turned down major label offers to be part of this new label paradigm.

"The second that I met the Abacus owner (Robert Kampf) and general manager (Chris Woltman), it was a completely refreshing feeling," Karl said.

The yet-to-be-named album, which will be marketed and distributed through EMI Music Marketing, will be released in the fall of 2005. The album will contain new material and songs from the EP the band put out in Texas. "No one outside of Texas has heard the songs off the EP and they are fantastic/defining songs," Karl said.

Firekills is currently writing new material and in the midst of pre-production. They start recording in early August, but "Myopia," "Raining Down," "Blood Red Ink," and "Last Impression" are a few of the tunes from the EP that will definitely be on the record.

Although TAXI didn't directly land Firekills the deal with Abacus, it definitely helped advance the band's career and music. From TAXI staff members talking to people in the industry about Firekills, to sending the band's music to TV and music supervisors, TAXI was with the band every step of the way.

"All of those levels of the TAXI chain of command added an increased level of awareness throughout the community," Karl said.

Firekills might not be a typical TAXI story, but an important TAXI connection actually helped the band finesse its deal. At last year's Road Rally, Karl started talking to TAXI member Ryan Carney and a few months later that member called requesting Karl critique his music. Due to his helpful critique, Carney offered Firekills a spot on the newly created D.I.Y. West Coast Warped Tour stage. Because of Firekills's appearance on the West Coast Warped Tour dates, the band achieved more notice and that eventually led to even more record deal offers.

"All of us at TAXI are extremely proud to have had a hand in helping Firekills land their deal. These guys are a force to be reckoned with, and I'm sure their record will do well when it comes out," adds TAXI CEO Michael Laskow.

See How TAXI Works

"I received a giant BMI check from TV airplay that I probably wouldn't have earned without TAXI."
— Julie Ann Bailey,
TAXI Member

"As writer/artists from another country, we see TAXI as the single best opportunity we have for direct exposure to the US music industry."
— Peter Martin,
TAXI Member