lolgoth #18: Trent versus the record companies

Stole this one from lolnin, with which there is much crossover on the LolGoth project, as you can imagine. Worry not, LolGothFans (both of you), I shall get cracking on a new series and post my long-delayed Henry LOLins as soon as I get a decent image program installed on this laptop. MS Paint? I wouldn’t paint a barn with that piece of crap!

ninvisible record executive

Now, with added backstory!

Trent:

It’s a very odd time to be a musician on a major label, because there’s so much resentment towards the record industry that it’s hard to position yourself in a place with the fans where you don’t look like a greedy asshole…I know people have it and I know it’s on everybody’s iPods, but the climate is such that people don’t buy it because it’s easier to steal it.

You’re a bit of a computer geek. You must have been there, too?

Oh, I understand that — I steal music too, I’m not gonna say I don’t. But it’s tough not to resent people for doing it when you’re the guy making the music, that would like to reap a benefit from that. On the other hand, you got record labels that are doing everything they can to piss people off and rip them off. I created a little issue down here because the first thing I did when I got to Sydney is I walk into HMV, the week the record’s out, and I see it on the rack with a bunch of other releases. And every release I see: $21.99, $22.99, $24.99. And ours doesn’t have a sticker on it. I look close and ‘Oh, it’s $34.99’. So I walk over to see our live DVD Beside You in Time, and I see that it’s also priced six, seven, eight dollars more than every other disc on there. And I can’t figure out why that would be.

Did you have a word to anyone?

Well, in Brisbane I end up meeting and greeting some record label people, who are pleasant enough, and one of them is a sales guy, so I say “Why is this the case?” He goes “Because your packaging is a lot more expensive”. I know how much the packaging costs — it costs me, not them, it costs me 83 cents more to have a CD with the colour-changing ink on it. I’m taking the hit on that, not them. So I said “Well, it doesn’t cost $10 more”. “Ah, well, you’re right, it doesn’t. Basically it’s because we know you’ve got a core audience that’s gonna buy whatever we put out, so we can charge more for that. It’s the pop stuff we have to discount to get people to buy it. True fans will pay whatever”. And I just said “That’s the most insulting thing I’ve heard. I’ve garnered a core audience that you feel it’s OK to rip off? F— you’. That’s also why you don’t see any label people here, ‘cos I said ‘F— you people. Stay out of my f—ing show. If you wanna come, pay the ticket like anyone else. F— you guys”. They’re thieves. I don’t blame people for stealing music if this is the kind of s— that they pull off.

Where does that extra $10 on your album go?

That money’s not going into my pocket, I can promise you that. It’s just these guys who have f—ed themselves out of a job essentially, that now take it out on ripping off the public. I’ve got a battle where I’m trying to put out quality material that matters and I’ve got fans that feel it’s their right to steal it and I’ve got a company that’s so bureaucratic and clumsy and ignorant and behind the times they don’t know what to do, so they rip the people off.

Given all that, do you have any idea how to approach the release of your next album?

I’ve have one record left that I owe a major label, then I will never be seen in a situation like this again. If I could do what I want right now, I would put out my next album, you could download it from my site at as high a bit-rate as you want, pay $4 through PayPal. Come see the show and buy a T-shirt if you like it. I would put out a nicely packaged merchandise piece, if you want to own a physical thing. And it would come out the day that it’s done in the studio, not this “Let’s wait three months” bulls—.

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16 thoughts on “lolgoth #18: Trent versus the record companies

  1. I was told some years ago that when the – ahem – “Sicilian Brotherhoods” – decided to “Go Legit” they bought out the major record labels. Is it any wonder they are getting their knickers in a major knot now that someone is ripping THEM off?

  2. Archie, they most certainly are, especially in the US. I like Trent’s idea of self-publishing for four bucks. I’d support that.

    max, you and me both. I think there are a few Goths out there who need to learn to lol.

  3. Reznor gives alot away for free.
    IMHO, the chinzy album garnish is garbage.
    YearZero bled out several downloadable songs online.
    Genius on Reznor’s part, I think.
    All the advertising bullshit goes with the territory.
    It’s industry vs stupidity for the most part. Survival of the most intelligent, if you will.
    Very cool post.
    I thought I was the only one that posted about NIN.
    ~m

  4. Pingback: The Truth (a meme) « Archies Archive

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