COLUMN: Why Band Photos Matter

Why Band Photos Matter
By Riz Farooqi
Photo Credit: End These Days by Imyoung Choi

Having done this website for over 4 years now, there are a few things that I’ve learned – I don’t know if they are valuable lessons for all of us playing music anywhere on this planet – but every once in awhile I feel compelled to share some stuff. Up to you whether or not it’s something to consider…

One thing that I’ve noticed on this site via all the statistics and readership info that I’m privy to through the backend of this website, is that posts with good band press photos significantly get more clicks. At the end of the day, the point of this website is to get YOUR band some exposure – so even if you’re the most underground grind-mince-straight edge-d beat-crust-raw-punk band on the planet, you are releasing music so clearly you want people to hear it, and that’s what this site is trying to do. While doing this I’m also trying to open the minds of the worldwide listening audience – most people hear the current hype band and then never dig any further. This is just the state of current affairs – maybe not “current” – more like the past decade plus. Long gone are the days when we used to scour through the thank you sections of vinyl, cassette, CD covers looking for MORE bands to check out – because if the band is thanking other bands, they MUST be good.

We just live in an era where if a song doesn’t grab you within the first few seconds, you’re done.

So within reality of increasingly shortened attention spans…it’s those images that people see first that really grabs them. It can be as simple as the following photos where the photographer really captured the essence of the band…

Nacarbride [Thailand/Japan]

Amu Daria [Malaysia]

Amulets [Macau]

Ballychunder [Hong Kong]

Turn For Our [Korea]

Choke Cocoi [Philippines]

Coffins [Japan]

Jaddah [Singapore/Malaysia]

Killkount [India]

Neck Deep in Filth [Nepal]

Ssslothhh [Indonesia]

Ugoslabier / Dagger [Thailand/Hong Kong]

Or it can be insanely well-crafted artwork like the following…

Marijannah [Singapore]

(no name band) [Sri Lanka]

Multinational Corporations [Pakistan]

Miser [Taiwan]

Opposition Party [Singapore]

Ache [Indonesia]

Either way, the point I’m trying to make is that bands big or small should really be spending more time thinking through the power of visual imagery – both in terms of photography and artwork. Go contact your local photographers/artists…go get in touch with them and see if they have a similar vision/understanding of your band and see if you can collaborate on creating some photos/artwork for you. The amount of really horrible stuff that comes into our mailboxes is seriously ridiculous….

I’m just going based on statistics – which I’ll repeat one more time – clicks on those posts that accompany really eye-catching or thought-provoking photos/artwork always get more clicks. Of course, if you’re already in a band that is well loved like Envy, Burgerkill, etc you can put up a black square and people will click on it regardless. But the rest of us will probably never be playing in bands that are universally loved.

Get stoked…keep creating art…keep pushing yourself.

King Ly Chee is an underground Asian music news website created for the sole purpose of supporting our own world. We support all bands and genres HOWEVER we do not support nor have any sympathy for homophobic, racist, sexist rhetoric in lyrical content or band material. UNITE ASIA!