Hydra Head Records

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Hydra Head Records
Hydra Head Records.png
Founded1993 (1993)
FounderAaron Turner
Distributor(s)Redeye Distribution[1]
GenreExtreme metal, experimental, hardcore punk, alternative rock
Country of originU.S.
LocationNew Mexico
Official websitewww.hydrahead.com

Hydra Head Records is an independent record label that specializes in extreme metal music, founded in New Mexico by Aaron Turner (the frontman of Isis) in 1993. It has another imprint, Hydra Head Noise Industries, which specializes in experimental and noise music.


Hydra Head was founded in 1993 as a distribution company while Turner was still in high school.[2] In 1995, he moved to Boston to attend art school. In late 1995, he was handed a demo by local band Vent. That seven-inch single would be the first record released on Hydra Head.[2] The label grew to accommodate local bands such as Roswell, Corrin, Piebald, and Converge, and after Turner graduated from college in 1999, it became a full-time endeavor.[3] In 2011, Hydra Head relocated to Los Angeles, California, from its former home in Boston, Massachusetts.[citation needed]

Some of the bands signed to the label include Cave In, Xasthur, Kayo Dot, Boris, and Jesu. Its discography includes Botch, Khanate, and Harkonen, who were all signed to Hydra Head prior to their respective disbandings.

On September 11, 2012, Turner announced the "imminent demise of Hydra Head Records", stating that Hydra Head would take its first steps into shutdown "this December, at which point we are cutting off new releases from the label." The label would continue to stay operational, maintaining its back catalogue to pay off its "rather sizeable debts."[4] The label's final release of new material was Worship is the Cleansing of the Imagination, a split album between JK Flesh & Prurient.

In 2017, Hydra Head released Oxbow's Thin Black Duke, a long-germinating album that was slated to come out on Hydra Head and had been unable to find another label since Hydra Head's closure. Discussing the album, Turner appeared open to releasing more albums "on a case-by-case basis" [5] In a 2018 interview, Turner expressed disinterest in doing Hydra Head as a full time label again, saying that "...it would mean me stopping a lot of other things that I’m currently doing, and I don’t want to do that."[6]

Current roster[edit]


Past artists[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Hydra Head Records is welcomed to the Redeye Distribution family". Redeye Distribution. April 15, 2009. Archived from the original on October 31, 2009. Retrieved February 14, 2010.
  2. ^ a b Hill, Mike (April 26, 2011). "Isis and Hydra Head's Aaron Turner on DIY Beginnings – Exclusive Interview". Noise Creep. AOL. Retrieved June 30, 2011.
  3. ^ "Punknews.org | About Hydra Head Records". Punknews.org. Retrieved September 1, 2009.
  4. ^ "The Imminent Demise of Hydra Head Records". Retrieved September 11, 2012.
  5. ^ "Oxbow's Avant-Rock Experiments With Light and Shadow Oxbow". Bandcamp. April 13, 2017. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
  6. ^ "Autodiscography: Aaron Turner on Isis, Hydra Head, and like a million other projects". Riot Fest. January 29, 2018. Retrieved November 16, 2021.
  7. ^ Julien, Alexandre (October 20, 2009). "The Abandoned Hearts Club Official Biography". Abridged Pause Blog. Archived from the original on October 18, 2017. Retrieved September 6, 2020.

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