4AD has been one of the
most influencial independent record labels of the late 20th
century. Founded in 1980 as a spin-off of Beggars Banquet, they
quickly gained seriously good artists and then a devoted
following. Bands such as Bauhaus, the Cocteau
Twins, Dead can Dance and Dif Juz -
to name but a few of the early bands - distinctive record design
by 23 Envelope and v23 - and the vision and shrewd business
sense of the founder, Ivo Watts-Russell, have set the off-kilter
music scene spinning.
The 4AD-L mailing list, founded mid-eighties, must be one of the
earliest electronic mailing lists devoted to a musical subject.
Today, it has about 600 subscribers and a number of additional
resources regarding all things 4AD, including this FAQ and two
comprehensive catalogues eyesore and the other site. We
don't just talk about 4AD (see etiquette) but its influence both
past and present makes the list a varied, high-volume, low-noise
and courteous place to discuss music.