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Playground magazine

Record Label


Bella Union

Present location: London, UK

Since: 1997


Bella Union is an independent label founded by Cocteau Twins' Simon Raymonde and Robin Guthrie in 1997, after breaking away from 4AD. Though initially started as a platform for their own music, the label ended up signing other artists, as the mythical dream-pop band split up shortly after. One of their first signings was the Dirty Three, led by violinist and Nick Cave collaborator Warren Ellis. Dévics, The Czars and Françoiz Breut were also signed early on. In 2000 there was an important change, as Guthrie moved to France to work on his musical career, leaving Raymonde at the helm of the label. It was the start of the imprint's most successful period, adding Explosions In The Sky, Laura Veirs and Midlake to its roster. Its tenth birthday was celebrated at the Royal Festival Hall, by which point Bella Union had established itself as one of the key indie labels. Two of their most important signings of recent years have been Fleet Foxes and Beach House.

Selected discography

Dirty Three: “Ocean Songs” (1998)

The Dears: “Gang Of Losers” (2006)

Fleet Foxes: “Fleet Foxes” (2008)

Beach House: “Devotion” (2008)

Andrew Bird: “Noble Beast” (2009)


Abe Vigoda

Andrew Bird

Beach House

Department Of Eagles


Dirty Three

Explosions In The Sky

Fionn Regan

Fleet Foxes

Françoiz Breut

I Break Horses

John Grant

Josh T. Pearson

J. Tillman

Laura Veirs


Peter Broderick

The Czars

The Dears

The Walkmen

Veronica Falls