The new Radiohead album was on sale digitally by the band. The band asked for donations in exchange for the album and got an average of 8$ per album. They sold 1.2M albums. Sales are at about $10 million in one week, that’s more than their last three albums combined did during their respective launch weeks.
I just love how Radiohead stiffed the middleman. The record company conglomerates are doomed to die. I hope this is the first nail in the coffin for these companies. More money should go to artists. Artists need the money to create more art. This is the perfect example of that.
I also liked how Radiohead didn’t promote this album. Not promoting it was actually the biggest promotion it needed. Word of mouth and the viral nature of such news was enough for 1.2 million people to get the new album.
Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails recently was extremely happy to be without a record company. That way he has total control over his music, which is pretty sweet. I am sure that this will entice other artists, hopefully really successful ones, to shed their record companies.