The new way of promoting albums

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Rubi
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The new way of promoting albums

Post by Rubi » 24 Jun 2018, 19:55

Am I the only one irked by the way Damon promotes music nowadays? Prior to the releases of The Magic Whip, Humanz and The Now Now, a promotional video was launched on YouTube (Go Out/Lonesome Street, Saturnz Barz, Humility) only to be followed by a myriad of preview tracks.

Before The Magic Whip's release, Blur had already released 6 tracks on YouTube. That's half the album! For Humanz we also got 6 tracks, and for The Now Now 5 tracks.

I'm not sure if other artists deploy a similar strategy or not, but I find it rather annoying. It completely robs the excitement of a new album. Take Arctic Monkeys' latest record. Nothing promotional was released before the album's release, so every single track was new to explore when it came out. And it was great. However, in the above-mentioned cases, you've already heard half the album on YouTube weeks in advance, so you're just scraping through the record for those songs you haven't listened to yet.

It's quite sad, really. In the past we used to get one or two videos max before a new album, and that left you curious and wondering how the record was going to turn out till the very last day (leaks aside). Perhaps it's something inevitable with the changing of times and the digitalization of the industry, I don't know...

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Re: The new way of promoting albums

Post by Forever Low Man » 25 Jun 2018, 00:04

you're not required to watch every video that comes out. that's on you.
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Re: The new way of promoting albums

Post by dparrott » 25 Jun 2018, 03:23

I definitely miss the singles being released over the course of the year. Not just for the b-sides but for the artwork and videos, etc. Everything is so accessible now. But yea you don't have to watch them.

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Re: The new way of promoting albums

Post by stephen » 25 Jun 2018, 08:25

I'm not really that bothered as long as there's new material out.

I like the deadmau5 way of releasing things as he seems to do it as and when he creates a song good enough for release to the public, and then maybe over the course of the year it builds into an album.

And that album might have snippets of previous songs that is forever evolving/changing.

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Re: The new way of promoting albums

Post by northernmonkey » 25 Jun 2018, 12:26

Although it is nice to hear new material early, it does spoil the feeling of listening to an album for the first time, I know nobody is forcing us to listen before release but as a fan it is hard not too. Plus I think it is damaging to the promotion of an album, releasing loads of stuff before and then nothing after its day of release making the album dissapear from the charts after 1st or second week sales.

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Re: The new way of promoting albums

Post by Rubi » 25 Jun 2018, 17:48

northernmonkey wrote:Although it is nice to hear new material early, it does spoil the feeling of listening to an album for the first time, I know nobody is forcing us to listen before release but as a fan it is hard not too. Plus I think it is damaging to the promotion of an album, releasing loads of stuff before and then nothing after its day of release making the album dissapear from the charts after 1st or second week sales.
Exactly.

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Re: The new way of promoting albums

Post by Mallard No. 22 » 26 Jun 2018, 06:15

It always was the case, e.g. up to the 2000s, that you got a lead single (or two).

Also, certain outlets like evening Radio One maybe interviewed/featured the artist in some depth and played some tracks.

However, this was not on a scale of exposure that you get now - there seems less incentive to buy the album. And opinions as to how good/bad are formed before the work is released, rather than buying and forming an opinion over successive listenings.
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Re: The new way of promoting albums

Post by tom_cas1 » 27 Jun 2018, 17:58

You're not the only one. I hate it. But Damon is lazy and his management are a bunch of losers incapable of doing their job correctly, it seems.
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Re: The new way of promoting albums

Post by John_d » 28 Jun 2018, 10:50

I think this is just the way it works now. Once an album is officlaly relesaed the buzz drops off a cliff. So you have to make the hype in the weeks preceding release.

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Re: The new way of promoting albums

Post by Forever Low Man » 29 Jun 2018, 01:22

John_d wrote:I think this is just the way it works now. Once an album is officlaly relesaed the buzz drops off a cliff. So you have to make the hype in the weeks preceding release.
basically

it's not 2005 anymore
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Re: The new way of promoting albums

Post by Pavlich » 29 Jun 2018, 06:36

John_d wrote:I think this is just the way it works now. Once an album is officlaly relesaed the buzz drops off a cliff. So you have to make the hype in the weeks preceding release.
Buzz only drops off if the album isn't very good, which is the case for most of the records he's put out in the last ten years. There's plenty of albums that had sustained attention for 6-12 months after release and it's because they're good albums.

In general, Damon seems to not really care about promo. He's established and it won't affect his income or really the attention his band gets. At the same time he seems to genuinely just enjoy making and playing music in all its forms. I think once something new comes along he goes to that, which explains the on again off again way the new The Good, The Bad & The Queen album has been made, but also he's happy to let it get out there asap or sit on it.

Humanz was a bad album with a few okay singles but it was like... sort of talked about, then like announced, then a single, then some videos... these days it's very cheap and very easy to buzz up a new release. Be a big artist and you can do something cool with an afternoon's thought and your material and social media. The frustration with Gorillaz is they're a fucking cartoon and an image based band and he clearly doesn't care about that side anymore. How hard is it to make that the main part of promotion?

The Now Now is more a 'just done, here ya go' sort of release and a slower mode of trickling out singles is fine. But Humanz needed that viral marketing with a cool website and a count down, the big single, then a few days later the next single and then you get the album a month later. Do some stuff in a pub and keep the clicks and hype going that way. Man, frustrating.

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Re: The new way of promoting albums

Post by stephen » 29 Jun 2018, 12:11

Pavlich wrote: Gorillaz is they're a fucking cartoon and an image based band and he clearly doesn't care about that side anymore. How hard is it to make that the main part of promotion?
The only time they really did it properly was Demon Days, since then it's more like Damon's collaboration project with a few cartoons chucked in for good measure. The two don't really tie together for me, it's all a bit disjointed. They would have been far more commercially successful if they went down the cartoon route for a basis of the brand, they really missed a trick with that one but I still enjoy the music they bring to the table.

Maybe the live shows proved too much of a sticking point and the music videos were too costly to maintain but for me if you look at Daft Punk who have had a constant brand for 2 decades you see the importance of a brand and the unique selling point of an anonymous band. It adds a bit of magic that Gorillaz had at the start (of course we always knew it was Damon singing but you could still have had a lot of fun with it). I guess you could also blame the state of the music industry for not going full out with the gimmick.

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Re: The new way of promoting albums

Post by Rubi » 29 Jun 2018, 19:07

stephen wrote:
Pavlich wrote: Gorillaz is they're a fucking cartoon and an image based band and he clearly doesn't care about that side anymore. How hard is it to make that the main part of promotion?
The only time they really did it properly was Demon Days, since then it's more like Damon's collaboration project with a few cartoons chucked in for good measure. The two don't really tie together for me, it's all a bit disjointed. They would have been far more commercially successful if they went down the cartoon route for a basis of the brand, they really missed a trick with that one but I still enjoy the music they bring to the table.

Maybe the live shows proved too much of a sticking point and the music videos were too costly to maintain but for me if you look at Daft Punk who have had a constant brand for 2 decades you see the importance of a brand and the unique selling point of an anonymous band. It adds a bit of magic that Gorillaz had at the start (of course we always knew it was Damon singing but you could still have had a lot of fun with it). I guess you could also blame the state of the music industry for not going full out with the gimmick.
Or maybe we could blame Damon for not sticking to the gimmick and for not making hits anymore. Sure, songs like Stylo, On Melancholly Hill, Staurnz Barz and Humility got their fair share of buzz, but never did they come close to the kind of buzz that Clint Eastwood and Feel Good Inc. produced. And that's because they were instant hits, that have sustained the decades and will continue to do so.

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Re: The new way of promoting albums

Post by Pavlich » 11 Jul 2018, 03:26

Rubi wrote:
stephen wrote:
Pavlich wrote: Gorillaz is they're a fucking cartoon and an image based band and he clearly doesn't care about that side anymore. How hard is it to make that the main part of promotion?
The only time they really did it properly was Demon Days, since then it's more like Damon's collaboration project with a few cartoons chucked in for good measure. The two don't really tie together for me, it's all a bit disjointed. They would have been far more commercially successful if they went down the cartoon route for a basis of the brand, they really missed a trick with that one but I still enjoy the music they bring to the table.

Maybe the live shows proved too much of a sticking point and the music videos were too costly to maintain but for me if you look at Daft Punk who have had a constant brand for 2 decades you see the importance of a brand and the unique selling point of an anonymous band. It adds a bit of magic that Gorillaz had at the start (of course we always knew it was Damon singing but you could still have had a lot of fun with it). I guess you could also blame the state of the music industry for not going full out with the gimmick.
Or maybe we could blame Damon for not sticking to the gimmick and for not making hits anymore. Sure, songs like Stylo, On Melancholly Hill, Staurnz Barz and Humility got their fair share of buzz, but never did they come close to the kind of buzz that Clint Eastwood and Feel Good Inc. produced. And that's because they were instant hits, that have sustained the decades and will continue to do so.
By the same token you can't expect anyone to write hits that big for every subsequent album, no matter their talent or the time an album takes. It's not as big or as good as Hey Ya but it is the same principle... some songs are massive for a year, 18 months and they resonate so much they continue to be A Known Song for years. It's unfair to hope or hang your band's subsistence on that.

I think Gorillaz should be a band who make an album every seven or so years. Make it this huge event, make it something where people go 'jesus, who could be on this one?' and be surprised by the collabs. Damon is a noteworthy and seemingly affable dude and always manages to get big names and those who are relevant; his own worst enemy with this project is himself (bad songwriting, lazy songs, not giving a fuck about promotion).

Gorillaz should be finding its feet as one of those aloof bands, who you ache in anticipation when they're gonna drop something and who headline every festival then disappear for a while.

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Re: The new way of promoting albums

Post by idreamofpikas » 11 Jul 2018, 05:50

Pavlich wrote:
I think Gorillaz should be a band who make an album every seven or so years. .
Damon is 50 years of age, he's not really going to sit out that long, especially as the long gap between Demon Days and Plastic Beach was probably one of the reasons it was not successful.

To be a huge successful artist/band it is not always about the material but making sure that people still know who you are.

Pavlich wrote: The frustration with Gorillaz is they're a fucking cartoon and an image based band and he clearly doesn't care about that side anymore. How hard is it to make that the main part of promotion?
It is incredibly hard when you actually want to do a world tour and need the audience to not be disappointed with an actual band playing. The first two albums with a handful of shows were easier to do but not really profitable.

The comparison with Daft Punk is kind of wrong, they are two DJ's with robot masks, it is easy to carry on that gimmick, though what I will point out is that Daft Punk have been going longer than Gorillaz and are less successful. The big recent difference is that on their last album they were lucky that they had Pharrell at his peak (overt the next 24 months he'd also have Happy and Blurred Lines) while Damon didn't really work with anyone on Plastic Beach or Humanz who blew up the same way.

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