Depeche Mode once sang "a handshake seals a contract" in their 80's hit, "Everything Counts," referencing the deal the synth-pop pioneers made with Daniel Miller and his at-the-time fledgling label, Mute Records. My, how times have changed.
Eight years after selling off Mute to EMI for the base price of $33 million, Miller has announced that the imprint he founded in 1978 is returning to indie status for the most part. In the process, the former home of the aforementioned DM and current label for artists like Moby, Liars, M83, The Knife and several more is aligning with its publishing company and a new artist/producer management company.
Along with the united units, which will all be housed under the Mute umbrella, the brand is bringing back Angie Somerside to serve as group managing director while Andrew King continues to head up the publishing company and Mute's New York GM, Mark Fotiadis, will work closely with the UK operation.
The relationship with EMI, though, isn't completely severed as a small number of artists will remain signed to and marketed by EMI Music, with Miller continuing to work with them in an A&R consultancy role.
In a statement regarding the unification/transition, the Mute boss says, "I am excited about this new phase in our development. The things we value most - our relationships with artists and our desire to embrace new ideas and ways of working – can now be fully realised in a structure I have been aiming towards for some time. This is the ideal time and perfect opportunity to bring three key elements together under the Mute name."