For an indie label that made its reputation selling $6 limited-run cassette tapes of bands such as Diarrhea Planet and the Vomettes, selling out two consecutive nights and well more than 1,000 tickets at the Orange County rock club the Observatory might be considered a capstone to a successful year. For Bohrman and Lee Rickard though, the festival is just one part of an expanding teen-punk empire rebutting today’s conventional wisdom of a digital, decentralized music-biz.
After founding the label in 2007, Bohrman and Rickard rode to prominence on the contrarian idea of labels releasing music on cassette tapes (though they press vinyl and CDs as well).
Focusing on trashy punk with a bubble gum streak, Burger\’s business model was to sign tons of bands, keep costs to almost nothing and build an audience that wants to live in your universe. They took ’90s DIY culture and gave it a ’60s teen-pop makeover.
“We love the Beatles, we love the Monkees,” Rickard said. “We love anybody who makes their own world in pop culture.”