Follow us on social

Essential Journal

  /  Issue 69   /  Essential Introductions: Heavenly Creatures Records
Heavenly Creature Records

Essential Introductions: Heavenly Creatures Records

In the height of the Covid pandemic, with gigs cancelled and independent musicians struggling to find opportunities to get their art out there, Lauren Thomson had an idea. In her bedroom up in Aberdeen, surrounded by an eclectic collection of cassettes, vinyl, and string instruments, she reached out to her contacts and contemporaries, and asked them a very simple question: ‘Do you want to make music together?’ 

And thus, Heavenly Creature Records was born. Named, of course, after the Kate Winslet/Melanie Lynskey 90s thriller film, Heavenly Creature Records is a Scottish non-profit record label and community that provides a platform for independent musicians to come together, and share their work up and down the country – and even abroad. Catching up with founder Lauren Thomson at her new home in Glasgow, she shares with us the ethos of the DIY label. 

“Immediately, as soon as I had the idea, I knew that this wasn’t going to be about making money for myself – it’s just going to be a platform for putting other people’s art out there, and letting them be heard. From the get go, it was always going to be about that community, and that shared space to promote art and platform new music.”

The label is Bandcamp based, an alternative streamer to Spotify, which was created by artists to ensure fair terms in financial reimbursement. Similarly, Heavenly Creature doesn’t request or retain any copyright of an artist’s work. If a band releases with the label, they still own the music fully, and aren’t obligated to give a cut of payment to the label. 

“It’s very DIY – for me, it’s been about finding the simplest way to put a musician’s or a group of musicians’ work out there in a way that honours the process, the production, and time that they’ve invested. I’m still figuring things out as the label grows, and we involve more artists and put on more shows, but the core belief of Heavenly Creature and the community aspect to it will stay the same.”

Heavenly Creature’s first release was an 80s compilation that the label released to raise for the charity No More Dysphoria, a US based organisation that works to help those who need funding for gender affirmation surgery. The first contributors responded to an open call Lauren put out on social media and it snowballed from there.

“It got the label in front of people, told them what it was about. After that comp, I had people getting in touch saying ‘oh I’ve got an EP, will you put this out?’.”

Since then, Heavenly Creature Records has released the work of twelve separate artists from Scotland, England, and the United States. The label has also put on a number of shows to help promote artists’ releases. 

“For the bands in Scotland, in particular, we’ve been able to put on a few gigs, usually in collaboration with my friend Gary, who has a record label called Gold Mold Records and Steven, from Struggletown Records. Even the bands in the States, I’ll work on the promotion for their gigs – although I’m not putting them on, I’ll still make sure the word is getting out and advertising them.”

And where will Heavenly Creature go next?

“Ideally, I’d love to do the label full-time, but as it’s non-profit, I think it’s a bit of a pipe dream at the moment. But even still, working on it has really given me the confidence to know I want to be working in music full-time, and carry on promoting the independent music community in Scotland and internationally.”

@heavenlycrecs @laurenmooset 

Word By: Beth Bennett

Imagery Courtesy of Heavenly Creature Records.