Maritime is releasing their new album, Heresy and the Hotel Choir, on October 16th. Until then, you can enjoy two of their “leaked” tracks on music blogs such as Battle of the Midwestern Housewives and My Old Kentucky Blog. [A brief aside: Is it wrong to link directly to the MP3s that the good folks at these blogs have posted (all of which appear to be legally posted, by the way)? I seem to remember something on the internets about bandwidth and/or etiquette but I’m not real savvy on this kind of stuff. Thanks for any advice.] I have been a fan of Davey Von Bohlen’s work since the days of The Promise Ring — download TPR songs at Epitonic, another great music site (RIP) — and these tracks sound fantastic. If only more bands could create ultra-catchy indie pop gems that rhyme “science fiction” with “benediction.”
The evolving nature of the music industry has changed the way artists and labels release their music. There is an article over at Spin called “The Days of the Leak” that chronicles the travails of the music industry as they deal with the problem of music being leaked before the official release date — although it is kind of hard to muster up much sympathy for megastars like The White Stripes, Trent Reznor or Linkin Park.
A little bit closer to home for indie rock aficionados is the early digital release of the new Stars album. Although the physical album won’t be released until September, the band chose to release their album in digital formats in July. From their website:
Friends, fans and supporters of Stars… – July 10th, 2007
…Traditional music business practice says we are to begin sending out copies of this album now. We give advance copies to print publications in hopes of securing features that coincide with our September date. We meet with radio stations in hopes of securing airplay. etc, etc.
Inevitably someone will leak the album.
…We hope you’ll choose to support the band, and choose to pay for their album. However we don’t think it’s fair you should have to wait until September 25th to do so.
We believe that the line between the media and the public is now completely grey.
What is the difference between a writer for a big glossy music magazine and a student writing about their favourite bands on their blog? What differentiates a commercial radio station from someone adding a song to their lastfm channel? or their myspace page?
…It’s our hope that given a clear, legal alternative to downloading music for free, you will choose to support the creators.
I heard it said the other day that content is still king on the internets and, after visiting all of these great indie MP3 blogs I tend to agree. I love sites like notcot, TasteSpotting and engadget because they do all the work for me — bringing together the latest & greatest in the worlds of design, food and gadgetry, respectively. And now I’m glad to discover sites like Who Killed The Mixtape and The Glorious Hum, along with the aforementioned MOKB and Midwestern Housewives, which do all the hard work of bringing together new & interesting indie rock songs for our listening pleasure. (Another aside: Anyone know why all these sites are hosted by blogspot?)