So Metallica, the band that did the big push to drive the original incarnation of Napster offline, is now thinking of following Radiohead’s lead and offering some sort of digital distribution of their future albums.
Uh, no. Sorry, Lars, but not only have you and the boys been surpassed musically (and I didn’t bother buying the last album, St. Anger), you certainly didn’t earn any favors with fans back in the wild days of the Web, with the dramatic show of reams of paper with Napster account holder’s details in front of the cameras.
I’m a big fan of Radiohead, so I paid normal retail price (instead of paying nothing) and eagerly downloaded their online-only album last year (In Rainbows – you can get it on CD now, too), and even though I’m not a big Nine Inch Nails fan I downloaded the Ghosts tracks, paying good money for that as well. You see, when it’s music I anticipate and appreciate, I’ll happily fork the money over. Just like I did for the first several Metallica albums.
Methinks Metallica will have to work pretty hard to either earn new fans or somehow bring back the fans they lost after the Black Album, and work even harder to bring back the fans who gave them a try with St. Anger.