On the Distribution of Modern Music
Several people have questioned as to why Petrychor’s music is available for free despite being on a label. In my experience as a musician in several projects and with a few labels, filesharing is going to happen no matter what; attempting to control it is only going to upset people who want to hear your music and spread the word to their friends. Physical objects such as CDs and vinyl exist only for collectors (such as myself) who want a tangible product to appreciate. I have seen little in my experience to suggest that many people will suddenly decide to drop money on a CD when they could have it for free, that is if they were not interested in collecting the physical object regardless of the original of distribution. Even lossless files are easy to come by these days; searching through music blogs is old hat when you can search “Petrychor Effigies Mediafire” and most likely have a v0-FLAC copy within a matter of minutes. Since even sound quality is no longer an issue, the choice between digital and physical becomes a matter of money and space.
Why collect at all? Ideally, these products are special in some way. Perhaps it is entirely handmade, contains an interesting paper mix, has liner note content unavailable anywhere else, bonus tracks, or just holds a significant memory for the beholder. No longer are mass-produced jewel cases interesting or worthy of a fan’s money; some attempt should be made to distinguish the product from others around it and to motivate those collectors to add it to their collection. This is what has been done with Petrychor’s music. Both releases will be available as a double CD set with double-sided artwork, folding out to reveal the liner notes and both albums opposite each other. The work that I did with Khrysanthoney and the artists to realize this packaging was involved and I think the end result will be highly worth it for collectors.
Will some planning to buy the CD end up not doing so after hearing the album? Surely. Will some not planning to buy the CD end up changing their minds? Surely. The end result is likely to be fairly balanced.
Petrychor would not have ended up where it is now without free filesharing and since it is so widespread, best to have a centralized location where people can guarantee they are getting a quality file straight from the source.
Using the few weeks of digital lead time (as is now standard, months even for massively popular groups) to avoid leaks and to give time for promotion, I am confident that the physical release on Khrysanthoney will do quite well and I encourage everybody to check out the set when it arrives. Khrysanthoney and Starlight Temple Society before it have always done excellent work and I thank them for the immense support. Surely, those of your who agree will do the same.