Silent Records was started in 1986 by Kim Cascone, a composer in the musique concrete/experimental/ambient industrial realm. Kim's vision was to bring interesting new music to the public, since few labels were doing that in the mid-80's. Silent was kicked off with LPs by the Haters, Architect's Office, and Organum/Eddie Prevost. Towards the end of the 1980's Kim began working in the film industry, and contemplated closing down the label. However, during a lull in film work, he decided to release "The Black Field" LP by PGR/Thessalonians, and Silent was once again in full gear.
In early 1991, Silent opened its own in-house distribution company, that now bears the name Pulse Soniq Distribution. There was little outlet for this type of music at that time, and so we began selling a variety of underground and hard-to-find titles from around the world to independent record stores around the U.S. and beyond. The distribution company was the catalyst that allowed Silent to grow. CDs by Arcane Device, PGR/Merzbow/Asmus Tietchens, Hafler Trio, Phauss, and Pelican Daughters followed in the early 1990's. Then the techno/rave scene helped to catapult the concept of "ambient" music into the public's consciousness, and opened up a whole new market. Silent continued on, releasing CDs by Heavenly Music Corporation, Thessalonians, 23 Degrees, Ambient Temple of Imagination, and a series of compilations called "From Here to Tranquility" -- our idea of the best of the new ambient music that was arising. (For a complete listing of available CDs go to our catalog page.)
Flask, Furnace and Sulphur Records came about in the last couple of years when we wanted to release material that (arguably) didn't fit the "ambient" format. Furnace concentrates mostly on a hard industrial sound, Flask is acid, electronica and yes, ambient, and Sulphur includes such diverse artists as Elliott Sharp, Crawling With Tarts and Skozey Fetisch.