Can We Please Move On From The Month Of May

I can’t say it’s been a great month so far. We’ve had some properly crap stuff happen round here that has got me concentrating on anything other than listening to music. Plus, the music industry seems set upon going to war with music bloggers that threatens to stop this being a worthwhile exercise. The whole idea of music blogging, where someone can say “Hey, I’ve heard this song, here’s what I think about it, try it yourself” and help spread good music is rapidly turning into “Here’s the only track the record company want you to hear, this Internet’s things a lark, isn’t it?”. We’re just all becoming record company shills. This upsets me, partly because it’s a model that is doomed to failure (if you want to download pirated music, it’s so simple it’s not even worth explaining), and partly because it’s hurting the very people who are trying to promote your music for free.

A little example – I would love to write about a song on Band Of Horses new CD, but I can’t, because if I try and post it, I’ll get shut down (again). So there you go, Band Of Horses Record Label, you don’t get any free publicity. Sure, I might only get a few hundred readers a day (a couple of thousand on a big day), but if 100 people go out and buy a record because of something I’ve said, that’s $1000 for the record label. And if, out of those 100, 20 like it so much they go and see the band with a friend, that’s another $800. Throw in some merchandising, that’s, say, $2000 thanks to me talking about it. In the grand scheme of things, that’s not much, but multiply this out for all the 10,000 plus bloggers on the big aggregators, and that’s a pretty decent sum. And I am very, very small fry in relation to some of the big hitters on Hype Machine and Elbows.

Arcade Fire are probably the biggest band that became famous almost solely due to the blogging world, leading the way for all sorts of bands like Arctic Monkeys through to Vampire Weekend and *insert new trendy band clogging up Hype Machine here*. So it’s not a huge shock to see that, with a new single on the way, they’ve found an interesting new way of drawing attention to it without all that dodgy downloading stuff. Of course, the whole point of mp3’s is that you should be able to download it and listen to it on the Tube, out jogging, lying around in the park drinking cheap cider, or wherever you so choose. Still, it’s a nice idea; go and have fun playing with the little vinyl record. Ooh, takes me back. Right, sunny and warm, off to get turned an alarming shade of red.

A. The Suburbs

AA. Month of May

MP3: Wake Up by The Arcade Fire

Amazon’s Arcade Fire Store