Die Symphony courts the big labels with a free concert at Karma

Die Symphony, they of over-drama and musical hyperbole, are giving a free concert at Karma on Thursday, Nov. 4. Apparently in the middle of massive major-label interest, they're hoping to draw a huge crowd of well-wishers to impress the label dudes in town for the show.

A few reminders to the members of Die Symphony: A seven (or six-, or five)-record deal with a major label is not a good thing. It just means that the label has the option of releasing your next seven records. If your first one flops and your next one sucks, the label not only can opt to pass on releasing the rest of them, it can prevent you from releasing them elsewhere. Also, a $1 million advance is just that -- an advance. It's not your money, and all those fancy hotels and tour buses will come out of your future royalties. If, on the off chance that you go platinum, you'll not make much cash on the sales of those records if you take a huge advance.

If a label really wants to sign you (and, honestly, potentially famous guitar-rock bands are a dime a dozen), they'll offer you a three-record deal, and if you're smart you won't accept a huge signing advance. We've seen countless St. Louis bands crash and burn in signing a label deal. Good luck.

Send all local tapes, tips, discs and detritus to "Radar Station," The Riverfront Times, 6358 Delmar Blvd., Suite 200, St. Louis, MO 63130; e-mail: [email protected]

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