Op-Ed: The Serious Implications Metric’s “Fantasies” Can Have On The Music Industry

Metric Fantasies.jpgSo last night I was up late doing the menial work on this site. Someone else in the room (I swear) downloaded the new Metric record Fantasies. Now, any of my friends who know me, know I hate music right now; I am excited by NOTHING. What I heard was a REAL record, an amazing record, like Dear Science amazing. This is a band that never impressed me (outside of a MSTRKRFT remix), that has made what I am sure will be a record on everyone’s year-end Top 3 (it is March, we could have an amazing year). So what is the big deal? A blogger creaming all over a leaked record happens every 10 seconds, right? WELL, THEY ARE CHOOSING TO NOT RELEASE IT WITH AN AMERICAN LABEL AND THEY WILL STILL SELL A TON OF RECORDS!

While Nine Inch Nails and a handful of other bands have decided to release their records on their own terms through their own methods, this is a band with all the label options in the world that choose to pass on both Major and large Indie Labels to go it on their own. They no doubt spent a small fortune recording the album by employing the Production of one of the most sought after Record Producers in the world, Nigel Godrich. While balking at going through a US label they are going through the always awesome, Last Gang Records for Canadian release (and a small Mexican Indie Label for domestic release), who released their previous output. 

If this record is to go as large (despite the amazing Justice influenced track “Stadium Love” having stadium aspirations, I don’t think they are going to be “Stadium Big” as much as one of the largest acts outside the mainstream) as I feel it can, many smaller somewhat-established Indie Acts will probably go a similar route. Obviously, this spells more trouble for labels, both Major and Indie. In the past, many bands saw a ladder approach to the music industry to get to the Major Label level. While labels like Anti have shown a new model for gaining success on a Major and then coming home to a more Artist-friendly Indie for future endeavors, this would be an entirely new model where going to a Indie gains your band a large following where upon you leave them once you reach self sufficiency to go your own way and maximize your profit margin and artistic freedom. 
This coming year will be an interesting test to see the potential of this new model, and the viability of this band who will no doubt garner hyperbolic reviews and pack crowds across the country. I know I will be purchasing this release and tickets to see them. 

Jesse Cannon is the editor of Musformation. He produces records at his studio Cannon Found Soundation. Follow him on Twitter at @JesseCannonMusF. For more info please visit his website.

  • http://www.facebook.com/rhi.nichol Rhi Oh’Dear Nichol

    Well they’ve done 2 albums like this now.. What’s your verdict?