Scrape Records closed its doors in April 2016 after nearly 20 years in business. The outlet owned and operated by J.J. Caithcart at the original Broadway location near Ontario and a second spot later on was Western Canada’s largest retailer devoted exclusively to heavy metal and hard rock. When it closed down, the globally celebrated local scene lost its storefront hangout.
Proving you can’t keep a good headbanger down for long, Caithcart is launching a new imprint at scraperecords.com.
Scrape Records — The Label, is launching with a reissue series of Vancouver’s very own long-running act Zimmers Hole. The first three albums by the band, featuring former members of such acts as Strapping Young Lad and Devin Townsend, will get vinyl and CD releases. Plus, the group is also looking towards a new release coming down the pipe.
“It’s the return of the Hole, who have technically been on hiatus for about two years but never really went away,” said Caithcart. “Even before I closed the store down, Byron Stroud (bass) and I had discussed doing something, but we weren’t really sure what that would be. Then I asked about the back catalogue, particularly the first three albums that were out of print and had never seen release on vinyl with deluxe packaging and so on.”
Stroud hinted that Zimmers Hole possibly had another album in the works and thought it would be pretty cool if Caithcart put it and the reissues out.
So much for retirement.
“The idea wasn’t to close down the store to start a label, the only thing I’d put out before was a western Canadian compilation in 2001 and the fourth album from a local group called Empyria.” he said. “There was no real monetary reason for shutting down, but I felt it was the right time to do something different musically at a time when the shelves were stocked with new product, bands were still coming by for signings and we hadn’t started moving into that closing stage of a final year where it gets kind of sad at any kind of retailer when they are ending.”
As for Zimmers Hole, the band formed in 1991 featuring bassist Stroud, guitarist Jed Simon, drummer Ash Pearson and vocalist Chris “E.Val” Valagao hadn’t released an album since 2008’s When You Were Shouting at the Devil … We Were in League with Satan, and its live performances were few over the past few years. As ever, everyone in the group is busy with other projects, but Valagao said they keep coming back to the project.