So it is with great regret that we find ourselves in a situation where we are left with no alternative but to air out years of dirty laundry with Josh Grabelle of Trustkill Records for our fans to read and become as disappointed by as we are.
Several months ago we were forced to send Trustkill Records a
?breach of contract?
notice (despite the legal fees involved for us with such action) and our
?breach of contract?
was not cured within the 30 days legally allotted. Trustkill has been in this current breach with Throwdown (it?
?s not the first time) since March 31, 2008. By his own accounting, Josh currently owes the band tens of thousands of dollars in unpaid royalties for CDs sold. We have not once in the history of our relationship with the label received a royalty payment on time. And now that our three album contract with him is fulfilled, we are not hopeful that will change.
It should be said that our relationship with Josh Grabelle started very positively. We were friends before entering into a business relationship and there was a sense of camaraderie between us and several of the bands on the Trustkill roster. As years passed, however, we saw that not only was Josh driving the label in a direction that none of us could respect, he was developing habits that diminished any trust we once had in him and often left us in a variety of compromising situations.
For example, we were forced to cancel dates on the Vans Warped Tour in 2006 when the necessary and agreed upon tour support to put gas in our van wasn?
?t delivered on time as promised. Trustkill?
?s failure to make payments on time during the making of our newest album, Venom & Tears, left us wondering how we would pay our rent and bills. Our producer nearly stopped the recording process after Josh and Rob Dippold at Trustkill repeatedly promised to pay him and repeatedly failed to deliver on time.
Please know that we are not
looking to be pampered. In order to do Ozzfest in 2004, we took out a loan from one of our family members and gave up mechanical royalties for six months in exchange for the opportunity
?? the rest of the money Trustkill has been able to recoup from our artist royalties. It was a wise investment. Ozzfest was great for us, and one we made on our own as you can see. We just want what is owed and what is fair and when it is due according to the terms of our contract.
These stories are the very tip of the iceberg and emblematic of our experience with Trustkill. Josh Grabelle consistently attempted to patronize and dismiss our concerns by calling us the band that
never happy with anything do??, a tactic we quickly realized was used with several other bands as well. Bands do talk when they see each other and it is a shame that the same camaraderie we felt with a variety of bands from all over the country on his label is now present for very different and undesirable reasons.
We know that our band is not alone. Whether more bands with records on Trustkill choose to make public statements as Hopesfall, Bleeding Through and now our band has done is of course their prerogative.
In spite of our hard and often ill-funded work on the road, in the rehearsal space and in the studio, we were told by Josh that we needed to be willing to sacrifice now and then. There is not a single word
that better represents what we have been forced to do under the Trustkill umbrella these past few years ?? sacrifice.
We truly feel that if Josh Grabelle would see the bands on Trustkill as actual groups of people with the same needs as him or anyone else versus a simple account or bill to be pushed to the side of the desk in his beautiful suburban home, then we would not be here today writing this unsightly account and maybe even have remained friends with him.
For the sake of new bands signing with Trustkill records, we sincerely hope that Josh can adopt such a perspective and begin to rebuild his label. And we hope that by making this situation public, Josh will be
motivated to get his business in order and set things right with Throwdown and everyone else who has been burned by the increasingly difficult situation.
With love and respect to all of those who support us and touring musicians around the world,