Or, as some might say, free!

Yesterday, Trent Reznor released The Slip, the new Nine Inch Nails album, gratis over at their website. It’s true, ol’ Trent didn’t even include a “pay what you want” option — just download The Slip for free! And, unlike the initial digital release of In Rainbows from Radiohead, The Slip is being released in high quality MP3, FLAC and other digital formats.

According to the NIN website, this free download is for the fans:

thank you for your continued and loyal support over the years – this one’s on me

Is this the new distribution model for music?

Yes, I suppose if you’re able to boost sales of $300 limited edition packages or $80 discbox sets, sell out your summer tour at $55.00 a head, and then go on to co-headline Lollapalooza in Chicago.

I don’t mean to sound overly cynical — it’s nice to get the new NIN album for free. In fact, this might be the first time I’ve listened to them since Pretty Hate Machine was released during my freshman year in high school (and I saw them their first time around at Lollapalooza in 1991… feeling… so…. old…) — no better way to gain/regain fans than through free merch.

* * * * *

Speaking of old school…

The All Tomorrow’s Parties festival in New York is a veritable 90s shoegazer noisefest, with My Bloody Valentine, Dinosaur Jr., Polvo, Mercury Rev and Mogwai all in the lineup.

And Sebadoh will be performing Bubble & Scrape and Public Enemy will perform It Takes a Nation of Millions… on the Don’t Look Back Stage at the Pitchfork festival in Chicago this summer.