Tuesday, November 30, 2010

RIP emusic

Congratulations, emusic. Having toiled over the past 7 years to build up an indie-centric, DRM-free alternative to iTunes-- a go-to site for the frugal but savvy underground music connoisseur-- you've finally reached the mountaintop...

And not just that. Xtina's friends Brittney Spears, NSYNC, Ricky Martin, Spice Girls and Backstreet Boys are also finally available on emusic. Praise the lord and pass the roofies!

Of course, nothing comes without a price, but fortunately in emusic's case it was only Matador Records, Merge Records, XL Records, 4AD Records and Domino Records. They're gone now, but that's okay because now emusic has Shania Twain!!

Sure, you'll no longer be able to download music from Yo La Tengo, Pavement, Arcade Fire, Caribou, Sigur Ros, Animal Collective, Spoon, Polvo, and all the other bands that made emusic what it is, but let's be realistic. Having done the heavy lifting to lay the foundation, it's time to send those artists out to pasture to clear room for the real jewels of recorded music...

The cast of FOX's Glee! (all exclusive trademarks apply)

Nice going, fellas.


texplush said...

I am truly sad at what has happened. Those labels are the ONLY reason why I signed up for emusic in the first place (that and I needed some peace and quiet from emusic's once-upon-a-time Jehovah's Witness, Drischord).
That said, from what I've read about the business side of things, it's hard to fault them for trying something new, even if it means that I eventually cancel my subscription. Namely, subscriber numbers had stalled for a significant number of years. Any business owner who wouldn't try anything new at this point is naive or stupid. The fact is that it just wasn't a sustainable model. I'm sad the good 'ol days are behind us, but i guess the market gets what the market wants.
I expect that if this model is a success (and it is still significantly cheaper than iTunes, especially if you consume music as voraciously as I do), then Beggars Group, Merge and Domino will be back eventually.
Also, isn't it fun to watch all these doofuses try to make money off of music? It's almost as stupid as trying to make money off of theater!
Drischord, did you cancel your subscription?

Eric said...

eMusic?? Who cares about them! I use iTunes! Thanks to them, I have finally gotten to hear this band, The Beatles. Until November 16 -- which was just another day. _That i'll never forget._ -- I had no way of hearing this supposedly great band. But now for the low price of $1.29 per track (that's almost nine cents per second of Her Majesty!) I can finally hear this stuff. Seems a little bit derivative, but it's pretty good. I'll listen more and let everyone know what I think.

drischord said...

Well $1.29 is a great value on Revolution #9.

drischord said...

Yeah Tex, I cancelled my subscription. I'm going to miss it most in January, when I've recently made a tradition of downloading a bunch of albums from the Pitchfork Top 50. I must admit there are some real finds in there-- just not in the Top 10.

But the fact is that most of the Top 50 won't even be available this year.

I hope that Matador, Merge, Drag City and other top indies merge together to form their own downloading service-- the prices don't have to be quite as low as Pitchfork's, but it would be nice to see some sort of discount. For now, it's back to physical CDs and the occasional Amazon download.

And iTunes for these strange but intriguing Beatles Eric speaks of. I'm going to schedule an appointment with a Genius to teach me how to perform such a download. I need an iPad for that, right?

texplush said...

I'll do a little test and let you know how many of the Top 50 end up on emusic.