Daft Punk’s new album, Random Access Memories (RAM) was released to the wild late last night for the world to see. Still not available for purchase, this album can be streamed on your computer via Daft Punk’s iTunes page. With almost a year of agonizing album advertisements, RAM isn’t just providing listeners some nice grooves; this album is attempting to reshape the structure of the entire music industry.
Waking up around 10AM EST, I learned the album was released from a Facebook status update by a high school friend saying he’s ‘streaming the new daft punk, best thing I’ve heard in a long time’. Looking for the stream online, I finally found my source.
This album made me do two things I haven’t done in a long time; I opened my iTunes for the first time in about 2 years and then actively listened to an entire album. I listened to the album (only available through iTunes) because it was being streamed in its full hour and fifteen minute length without digitally sectioning out the songs. Like vinyl, I actively listened to both the songs and album in their entirety.
Daft Punk successfully released both a single and an album to a massive audience through the digital realm. This digital media world is quite diverse with each having its advantages/disadvantages.
Spotify is leading the steaming media world. If iTunes and Youtube fucked each other and produced a child, this child would be Spotify (Napster of course is the Godfather of the whole family). It has an easy user interface like iTunes and large volume of open source music from Youtube is an easy way to access massive amounts of music. Of course there are voids in each system; Groveshark has songs Spotify doesn’t and doesn’t have those fucking sickening ads, Pirate Bay for when I do not have required internet connection or abroad.
RAM even gave us back the single that was the staple of the music industry during the era of the vinyl. Several weeks ago, Spotify released Daft Punk’s nu-disco sounding single ‘Get Lucky’. It broke the record for being Spotify’s ‘most streamed song’. According to the Guardian, Will Hope from Spotify has said RAM has been, ‘…one of the best album campaigns we’ve seen for some time.’
iTunes, and its deep pockets from Apple, is attempting to become a player in the music streaming world and this last move has probably put Spotify on edge. With another three days until the official release of RAM, iTunes should be experiencing higher traffic volumes than it has had in its recent past. With today’s release, RAM’s campaign is paving digital music history.
Random Access Memories is leading the music industry into a digital frontier and is taking its listeners into a new world of digital media distribution and consumption that hasn’t been seen in over a decade.