It’s funny how varied music artists are some artists seem to get and embrace the Internet and others seem to be at war with it. According to this article on Ars Technica, Metallica doesn’t care what anyone says about their music or at least not music fans who write blogs. Apparently they released some rough tracks of their upcoming album to a journalist who reviewed the tracks. Then once he reviewed the tracks they demanded he take down the article.
The Quietus decided to pull the review and replace it with a cheeky note and an old interview with the band. Wired’s Listening Post blog, which has followed the story, notes that this isn’t just about being jerks; management claims that the tracks in question were a rough mix that weren’t ready for prime time, which perfectly explains why they invited journalists to come hear them.
Metallica has acquired a reputation for hating the Internet, which isn’t really true—the band does have a website and it did finally come to iTunes—but the band invited derision from fans with its stance against Napster back in the day. (As a metal band, Metallica of course has long stood up for the principles of fair play, buying your music at retail prices, and not being a rebel.)
Now contrast that position with of Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails who gives away his rough tracks and recently released “The Slip” for free from his website even though he the album is available for sale in retail outlets. In a recent New York Times article Reznor says:
“This one’s on me,” Mr. Reznor announces on that Web page. The album was downloaded more than a million times before the end of May, according to him. A retail CD version of “The Slip” is due shortly before Nine Inch Nails starts its tour on July 25 in Vancouver.
“Aside from any kind of monetization of it, I’m glad to know that a million people have it on their iPods,” Mr. Reznor said. “If you paid for it, great, but I want everyone to hear it, you know? I want to blow people’s minds.
The Slip is released under creative commons attribution non-commercial share alike license with the following message:
we encourage you to
share it with your friends,
post it on your blog,
play it on your podcast,
give it to strangers,
I remember when rock and roll was about being a rebel, I am glad that Trent does too. I can’t tell you whether Metallica’s next album is good or not but I can tell you that NIN’s slip is excellent.