ABSTRACT

The success of Cartoon Network’s channel-sharing sister network Adult Swim has relied upon more than the cheeky adult-themed cartoons such as Space Ghost Coast to Coast (1994–1999, 2001–2004, 2006–2008) and Aqua Teen Hunger Force (2000–2015) that provided its start. Expanding into the areas of live action programming, live events/tours, online video gaming, among other forms of output, Adult Swim has crafted a media brand that has both catered to and created a niche taste culture. A significant component that traverses nearly all aspects of the brand are the various musical selections used as soundtracks to these texts and events. In fact, beginning in 2007, Adult Swim’s production company, Williams Street Studios, has operated Williams Street Records as an autonomous record label (with ties to parent company Time Warner’s Warner Music Group) dedicated to releasing this music in various forms. Through relationships with other independent or underground music labels, these selections provide a sonic dimension, an overarching unbounded soundtrack, for this brand that started as a programming block borne of the traditionally less lucrative margins of a television schedule.