Trent Reznor Says Radiohead Offering Was Insincere, Industry Is Inept
Band Photo: Nine Inch Nails (?)
Ars Technica reports: Major musicians are exploring the market potential for directly interacting with their fans and releasing music independently. Nine Inch Nails and Radiohead both made headlines recently for experimenting with Internet-based releases, but NIN frontman Trent Reznor has just called Radiohead's effort "insincere."
"I think the way [Radiohead] parlayed it into a marketing gimmick has certainly been shrewd," Reznor said when speaking to Australian Broadcasting Corporation's Michael Atkin. "But if you look at what they did, though, it was very much a bait and switch to get you to pay for a MySpace-quality stream as a way to promote a very traditional record sale."
Reznor is referring to Radiohead's release of "In Rainbows" as lossy 160kbps (max) MP3 downloads, which many would argue are sub-par when compared to DRM-free offerings from Amazon and iTunes Store (both of which offer 256kbps DRM-free music). Furthermore, Radiohead's album is also no longer offered as a digital download, as the band openly stated that they were still going to rely on traditional labels and distribution channels for the rest of In Rainbows' sales.
"There's nothing wrong with that," Reznor continued, "but I don't see that as a big revolution [that] they're kinda getting credit for." In addition to the quality of Radiohead's MP3s, NIN's frontman also took issue with the band's omission of artwork and altogether not taking care of the fans. "To me that feels insincere. It relies upon the fact that it was quote-unquote 'first,' and it takes the headlines with it."
As previously reported, Nine Inch Nails 36-track instrumental album "Ghosts I-IV" had a total of 781,917 transactions in its first week of release online, which includes free and paid downloads as well as orders for the physical copy, resulting in $1,619,420 USD. The 2,500 copies of the ultra deluxe edition of the album, which sold for $300, sold out in three days.
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