History of the Sonic Unyon
Sonic Unyon Records established 1993.
Mark Milne, Sandy McIntosh and Tim Potocic, all members of the band Tristan Psionic, launched Sonic Unyon Records in 1993. Still in university at the time, Sandy and Mark began organizing shows and dubbing tapes for their band and other locals. When the pair took on Tim as Tristan Psionic’s new drummer, they had unknowingly found the final partner for business that would last much longer than first anticipated. Today Mark and Tim continue to run Sonic Unyon and its various offshoot businesses while their good friend Sandy is now a practicing architect.
Over the years, Sonic Unyon has branched out in numerous ways.
Sonic Unyon Distribution was founded in 1998 to distribute Sonic Unyon other labels (including Epitaph, Nuclear Blast, Warp and more) in Canada. Sonic Unyon Distribution was sold to Maplecore in 2008. Sonic Unyon also ran hardcore label Goodfellow Records and the more mainstream imprint Labworks.
In 2009 Sonic Unyon became the organizing force behind Hamilton's free music and arts festival Supercrawl, growing it from 3,000 attendees in the first year to 250,000 by 2018 and closing down blocks of downtown Hamilton in order to host the likes of Broken Social Scene, Arkells, Monster Truck, Sharon Jones, Charles Bradley, Spoon and many more. Sonic Unyon has since broadened its events-based business to include the annual craft beer festival Because Beer, the Seven Sundays in Gage Park series, and the opening of their own multi-use cultural events space Mills Hardware — in addition to being the force behind JUNOfest 2015 and Hamilton's Pan Am Games closing events. By 2014, Sonic Unyon Records left behind its music distribution business completely when it handed over these responsibilties to Sony Music Canada and the Orchard.