Radiohead’s “In Rainbows” (updated)

cross-posted from the mind-Dumpster

So like I’m a subscriber to a mailing list organised by the Creative Commons, named CC-Lessigletter, a mailing list which is usually active during their annual fund drives (the fund drive is a requirement from the United States’ IRS to show that the 501(c) Non-Profit organisation has “popular support”). And the fun thing about this mailing list is how it promotes the Creative Commons cause; not by making ‘sales pitches’ urging ‘participation’ for the ‘public good’ (particularly your ‘monetary participation). No, they definitely do not shill; in stead they tell war stories, positive stories highlighting what the Creative Commons have done.

And this month’s CC-Lessig Newsletter (written by Creative Commons activist Fred Benenson) informed me that Radiohead has released a new album, “In Rainbows,” and is making it available as a download where you name your own price. And yes, you can name your price “zero pence”. Which is what I did since I’m practically broke thus why I’m volunteering at JiFFest this year 2007 for practically pennies.

I’ve downloaded the album, its a 48-megabyte zip file containing 10 drm-free high-quality mp3s. Wikipedia says that the songs are pretty good; I don’t know since I don’t have speakers at my workstation here. And you know what, when JiFFest pays me I think I’ll just buy me a copy of their Limited Edition Box Set. We’ll see…

update 12/20/2007 : And guess what? Radiohead managed to bag over €6 million from their “pay what you want” digital downloads program; apparently about 40% of the downloaders actually paid, and the average among them was about €6 or something. The exact numbers are in dispute, but the undisputable point is that Radiohead made quite a bundle.

But of course obviously it only worked because they were Radiohead. They already have a dedicated worldwide fanbase nurtured for over 12 years, and they were just ending their label contract with EMI. A rather thorough analysis you can read by checking out Wired’s coverage, with David Byrne interviewing vocalist Thom Yorke and talking about the future of music etc.

Mr Byrne also made an IMHO excellent assesment of business options for the contemporary musician in the digital age.

[David Byrne was vocalist of classic 70's band Talking Heads, who made the song "Radio Head" from which the band got their name. Younger Windows XP users might recognize Mr Byrne's name from the bonus audio track included with most installs of Windows Media Player 9 entitled "Like Humans Do (Radio Edit)", from his solo album "Look Into the Eyeball". Its in the My Music\Sample Music folder, filename music.wma (Buy the Album from Napster! /:)].

Meanwhile, as compensation to Radiohead for my enjoying their excellent, excellent music, I think I’ll buy the plastic-classic Audio CD (due for release worldwide sometime this month) instead of the Box-set; its just too rich for my blood :p

hat tip: boingboing.net

Upon listening to “In Rainbows”, a comment that came out (that I tend to agree with) was that ‘In Rainbows’ is a road-trip album; you could feel yourself travelling cross-country with your best buddies in an old sedan while listening to it. Or you should listen to it while travelling cross-country with your best buddies in an old sedan. Groovy, perhaps, in a word.

I spent my last days at JiFFest 2007 downloading Velvet Revolver’s two albums, Smashing Pumpkins’ return album “Zeitgeist,” three albums from the Kahvi Collective winter releases, Bruce Springsteen’s “Magic,” and an old casette I lost a few years ago: Lauryn Hill’s “The Miseducation Of…”.

And also “OK Computer”.

Searched The Pirate Bay, downloaded torrents using GetRight nagware edition, bandwidth capped at 80 Kbps (so as to not annoy other local network users). Except for the Kahvi Collective ambient electronics, which I downloaded direct from their site (Legally, I should add).

For those Jakartans still in doubt on wether to go with Fast Net‘s unlimited broadband service or not let me assure you, I was a very happy Fast Net user as was all of my JiFFest co-workers.

(If anyone from Fast Net is listening please, please, pretty please roll out your network at Puri Kembangan Raya…)

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2 Comments

  1. hey lemi4/ferdi, just replying to your comment on my blog :)
    it seems that people still prefer award-winners, coz most of them are already sold out even before JiFFest starts (i didn’t get Chants of Lotus :( )
    so you’re volunteering there, that’s so cool :D if I didn’t have to work full-time, I would have loved to participate in the event too

  2. Halo iba/yuzuri, thanks for visiting :)

    Yeah I was broke and I hadn’t gotten any translating/design job for about three months at the time so I decided whattaheck, let’s at least donate my skills to a worthy cause :) (or at least a cause that I’m sure I can’t possibly mess up :p)

    You know you could always plan an unpaid vacation during festival season; some of the JiFFest volunteers have full-time jobs elsewhere and they took a vacation just so that they can help out. It is definitely not about the pay; and it sure is fun to be involved in the biggest film festival (by public attendance) in South East Asia.


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