West Coast Sound just received this press release from prominent LA-based label Nuclear Blast Records' Hawthorne offices, and we figured it'd be a good idea to pass it along:

For Immediate Release:


A label staff imposter by the name of Kevin Drander/Kevin Darden has reared his ugly head once again. We repeat, he is NOT an employee of Nuclear Blast Records OR Century Media. If he's reached out to you, do NOT waste your time on his false promises. For the sake of your own safety, DO NOT under ANY CIRCUMSTANCES agree to meet him ANYWHERE. He has the makings of a serial killer whose motives are power & control.

Nuclear Blast Records has made rebuttals to each of his false e-mails (see below).

What follows are the emails that Darden (aka Drander) has been sending to metal bands:

Deceptive E-mail #1:

From: Kevin Drander

To: demiseofcavall

Sent: Thursday, July 16, 2009 12:45:54 PM

Subject: Offer from Nuclear Blast Records


How's it going? Thank you for sending me your contact email. Your music is

strong and it seems you have a nice following for the short amount of time you've been

together as a band. Personally, I believe you have a great amount of potential. The tracks

I heard are really tight and your image is perfect as well. About me, I am the A&R Executive2 and Production Assistant for the US branch of Nuclear Blast Records. I search for new artists to sign, negotiate contract agreements, and help record and produce most of the albums put out by our label.

What I wold like to do is a test run with you. I would like to offer you a 1 year contract agreement with Nuclear Blast. We will put out a record and sell 50 to 300 k records and then go to the next level from there. The royalties I am offering are more than double the standard. Also you will retain all publishing rights as well, which is rare in contracts these days.

Me being the A&R I would make sure the record sells….. We will be investing a minimum of 1.5 Million Dollars in packaging, distribution, and all touring/housing fees. Please give this a review and let me know your decision. We look forward to welcoming you to the Nuclear Blast Family.

Please get back to me as soon as you can.


Kevin Darden

Nuclear Blast Records

A&R Executive

Production Assistant


1. ALL Nuclear Blast employees work from an e-mail address that has the name of our company in the domain. As everyone knows, ANYONE can sign-up for a Hotmail account.

2. There is only ONE person who handles A&R for the entire North American territory, and he does so IN-HOUSE from our OFFICIAL office in Hawthorne. Trust us, it's NOT this guy.

3. There is NO Nuclear Blast employee at the U.S. office who holds the title of “Production Assistant.”

4. Contract negotiations are handled by our German office and headquarters, based in – yupp, you got it – GERMANY.

5. Check ANY Nuclear Blast album released in the past 22 years, and this Kevin Drander/Darden guy will not have a SINGLE production credit. Repeat: NOT ONE. Metal fans are WELL aware of the producers NB artists work with (ex: Andy Sneap, Peter Tägtgren, Tue Madsen, Logan Mader, etc., etc.).

6. The ONLY people with the authority to offer ANY BAND a deal with Nuclear Blast are the kind people at Nuclear Blast Germany.

7. 1.5 million dollars invested in a band unknown to the worldwide metal scene in the throes of a bad economy? Just a reminder: If it sounds TOO GOOD to be true, it IS.

8. Our contact information is listed on our website. All this proves is that this guy knows how to cut & paste.

Deceptive E-mail #2:

From: Kevin Darden

To: demiseofcavall

Sent: Friday, July 17, 2009 3:32:14 AM

Subject: RE: Offer from Nuclear Blast Records

As far as the contract agreement would go, we technically do have to meet in person, with attorneys present, to complete the signing. I would be more than happy to arrange a meeting with you to discuss in detail all other aspects of the contract, and we can get to

know each other better. You are more than welcome to invite your attorney to that as well. Please let me know if there is a contact number I can reach you at, or if/when the best available date would be to set up the first meeting. We have a distribution warehouse in

Chicago, IL, and that would be the location.

Thanks again.

Kevin Darden

Nuclear Blast Records

A&R Executive


1. There's that free Hotmail address again!

2. You will NEVER see this guy's name in our press releases announcing new signings. Recent example: IMMOLATION .

3. No, we DO NOT have a distribution warehouse in Chicago, Illinois.

4. Anyone suggesting an “official” business meeting at an undisclosed warehouse is trying to lure you there to: a) rob you b) rape you c) kill you or d) all three. Can you say “homicidal maniac”?

Deceptive E-mail #3:

From: Kevin Darden

To: demiseofcavall

Sent: Monday, July 20, 2009 6:55:59 PM

Subject: RE: Offer from Nuclear Blast Records

Hi. I'm not sure which department you have contacted to you get your information but i can assure you, it's false. I do work for Nuclear Blast and Century Media Records, and would be more than happy to meet with you in person,5 so you are assured that this is not a scam. I will give also you a 20 k advance before the signing.

Please let me know if you are wanting to continue with this offer.


Kevin Darden

Nuclear Blast Records

A&R Executive


1. Hotmail address again!

2. The band called our main number, staffed by someone who sees us EVERY SINGLE WORK DAY.

3. We all know who the REAL liar is here, don't we?

4. Oh, so now he works for Century Media, as well? We call bullshit!

5. This supposed business meeting would NEVER take place at our main office (or a warehouse in Chicago) because: a) this guy is NOT a label employee and 2) we have no warehouse in Chicago.

6. This has scam all over it.

7. Anyone luring you ANYWHERE promising to give you a “20 k advance” is trying to: a) rob you b) rape you c) kill you or d) all three.

Deceptive E-mail #4:

From: Kevin Darden

To: demiseofcavall

Sent: Thursday, July 23, 2009 3:22:52 AM

Subject: RE: Offer from Nuclear Blast Records

That sounds great. When it comes to press kits I usually don't accept them through my personal mailing address. The label would normally receive them, and forward them to me. However, I would love to hear your full demo and view a live DVD of you, so please send me a Digital Press Kit in PDF Format, to speed up the process. I really encourage you to send all future inquires digitally, to give yourselves more of a professional image, which is something we will discuss further down the contract.

If you cannot send anything digitally at this point in time, I can understand.

Here is my home address you can send it to.

625 S San Pedro St.

Los Angeles, CA 90014

Is there any date you would be available to meet in person and discuss the contract? I'm hoping to complete the signing by October, so we have time to spare, but depending on any revisions that need to be made, I'm not sure how time that will be.

Please get back to me when you can.


Kevin Darden

Nuclear Blast Records

A&R Executive


1. For the fourth time, this is NOT an official work e-mail address.

2. False. We don't need to forward ANYTHING to ANYONE because we all work out of the official label office.

3. We never ask for these.

4. The address given is a facility named Abbey Apartments on Skid Row, which provides supportive housing for homeless men and women. He sounds more and more “official,” doesn't he?

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