Punk Rock Revitalization!
Last year we decided to do something edgy and bold, switching up the classic K&L Faultline gin label and replacing it with punk rock-inspired art work from acclaimed comic book artist Jaime Hernandez. We even went so far as to create two additional Faultline products (an absinthe and a Bourbon) so that we could print records to go along with the booze—our attempt to create a VAP pack that was actually worth buying (rather than shitty logo-embossed glassware or other lame shwag). Our friends Lisa and Julie from Frontier pressed the music, Jaime did the art, and Dave Smith from St. George took care of the hooch. We threw a party to celebrate. Jaime came to the Hollywood store and signed bottles and records. It was a blast all around! Personally, I know in my heart it was the coolest thing K&L has ever done and will ever do, but commercially it wasn't like hoards of drinkers were out there looking for esoteric comic references and limited 7" vinyl releases from early 80s era LA punk bands. We didn't do it for the money, that's for damn sure! We did it for the love of the art. We did it because it was plain fun!
We also may have stirred an awakening. Less than one year after working with us on the Faultline project, Jaime and his brother Gilbert announced they would be reviving their legendary "Love and Rockets" series, to the jubilation of the thousands of artists they influenced over the last four decades. Around that exact same time, I received an email out of the blue from Rikk Agnew, the iconic guitarist and songwriter behind both The Adolescents and Christian Death; the very bands we paid homage to with the gin and absinthe labels. He was hoping to get a bottle of each and a record if possible (uh....yeah, Rikk. You can have as many as you want!!). He wrote me again after stopping by the store, wanting to extend his appreciation and tell me how honored he was by the tribute. Then, just a few weeks after that correspondance, Rikk Agnew announced he would be releasing a new album in October called "Learn." I was fortunate enough to get an advanced copy yesterday and I haven't stopped listening to it since. It's incredible. I feel like it's the first punk rock album made after the year 2001 that has me excited about punk rock again! There's a reason people call Rikk Agnew the "Brian Wilson of punk" (you can preview and pre-order your copy from Frontier here). Less than one year after celebrating the work of Jaime and Rikk, both artists are back on the scene in top form! It's wonderful!
In any case, I'm not saying we had anything to do with any of this (I'm just casually implying it), but there's still a few bottles of the gin and the absinthe left to inspire you (and they're on sale for half price while they last!). Maybe you'll have your own artistic awakening after drinking a few sips. Here's to the revitalizing power of art, music, good booze, and good people!