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20-Sep-2015 03:53

We did another couple of records with Sea Stone and then we started making records for other Christian bands as well." Sea Stone, after a long and wonderful career, went the way of all fish....flesh and a new band called Intransit was formed which Simon described as "Level 42 meets Jimi Hendrix".After a relatively short life span Intransit fell apart with the bass player and drummer chasing fame and fortune and it was then that Simon formed Fresh Claim, named after a legendary trip to the dole office with the new drummer. Incidentally, the original Sea Stone album 'Mirrored Dreams' is now an extremely collectible rarity, changing hands at record fares for three-figure sums!But surely one of the longest standing Christian Indies is London-based Plankton Records.I travelled up to the nerve centre of their world operations, a house in Forest Gate, to meet with partners Simon Law and Keith Dixon and began to fish for the story (the first of many fish jokes! I began by asking Plankton's founder, Simon Law, how the company originated.Christian music in Britain has always had more than its fair share of independent record companies, a dedicated bunch who over the years have continually blown raspberries (metaphorically speaking of course) in the face of the Christian music multi nationals, releasing music of a consistently high quality despite working on laughable budgets.

Meanwhile Plankton Records was busily expanding its catalogue with releases from artists like Pete Ward, Really Free Band and Solid Air, whilst the major labels in Britain were concentrating on American imports, praise and worship and "safe" artists who would be guaranteed sellers.Plankton was then and always has been a very different kettle of fish (sorry! I asked Simon why they had always been risk-takers."I was in a band and some previous recordings I'd done were too Christian for the secular record companies and too secular for the Christian record companies, so we decided to do our own thing," responded Simon."So the band made an album and we put it out ourselves and we needed a name for the record company.

Sea Stone was the name of the band and I called the publishing company Sea Dream Music.

I was at a camp and was telling one of the lads and he said, 'Oh, what are you going to call the record company then, Plankton?

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