Radiohead's Thom Yorke Releases New Album via BitTorrent
Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke thought up another creative way to release an album, putting out his new solo LP, "Tomorrow's Modern Boxes," via BitTorrent. The release is the first paid record release via torrent.
Yorke and his producer Nigel Godrich announced the release Friday, saying they want to create a new model for artists to control their music or other digital content.
"It's an experiment to see if the mechanics of the system are something that the general public can get its head around," Yorke explained in the announcement. "If it works well it could be an effective way of handing some control of internet commerce back to people who are creating the work. Enabling those people who make either music, video or any other kind of digital content to sell it themselves. Bypassing the self elected gate-keepers. If it works anyone can do this exactly as we have done."
The eight-track album costs $6 and is unlockable on the BitTorrent Bundle site. The move echoes Radiohead's very forward-thinking move in 2007 to a pay-what-you-want release of In Rainbows, except Yorke's new record comes with a minimum cost of acquisition and the well-established technological backbone of the BitTorrent file transfer protocol.
BitTorrent confirmed to Billboard that the company will receive 10% of the money from Yorke's sales, 5% less than BandCamp or BandPage and far less than iTunes' 30% cut.
Do you think Yorke should continue pushing the envelope with his distribution methods, or stick to tried-and-true album releases?