Monoliths and Dimensions, the new album by Sunn O))) has a Metascore of 87 which is currently the 3rd highest Metascore of 2009. This is the type of critically acclaimed yet difficult to digest experimental indie album that eMusic users should eat right up. Which is why I was surprised to see the eMusic user rating is a mediocre 3.0 out of 5. So what gives? It turns out the users who gave negative reviews were actually expressing their contempt for eMusic’s new pricing structure in lieu of rating the music on the album.
Last month eMusic added Sony music in an effort to appeal to a broader audience. They also changed the pricing structure to “… enable us to better compensate all of our labels…” [oh, you mean like SONY?] “…plus add new content from Sony starting in July, and even more new labels in the future.” Loyal users who were already unhappy about getting 30%-40% less monthly downloads for the cost of their subscription saw how the new album pricing, which was supposedly going to be good for users, jacked up the price of this 4 song album to cost 12 credits… and they weren’t exactly thrilled about it.
Here are some of those “album reviews”:
“Even more lame…” -chunga74 from Chicago, IL
Even new releases from indie labels emusic carried before the switch to ‘premium’ service get the lame new pricing scheme? I’m down to 4 credits already this month because I downloaded 3 albums emusic already carried but were priced via the old pricing scheme (1 song = 1 credit/download) and each album had more than 12 songs on it so I got stuck spending 15-18 credits on each album. Now I want to download a new release but can’t because even though it only has 4 songs it’s gonna cost me 12 credits!??!!?? If emusic is going to change they’re pricing structure they need to at least be consistent. I’ve been a member of emusic for years because they made it affordable to take a chance on a band like Sunn O))). The new ‘premium’ service pretty much puts a stop to that.
What really sucks is when you download a minutemen record with 26 songs and only 30 minutes of music, emusic doesn’t make an adjustment.
“New emusic policies suck!” -bartlebooth from Takoma Park, MD
I’ll be cancelling as soon as i finish this months downloads..and i’ve been a customer for years here!
“eMusic used to be good for indie music lovers” -dhcmrlchtdj
As a long-time eMusic customer, so far I could download 50 tracks a month. Now, with the new Sony deal, my allowance has been almost halved to 30. Even worse, those 30 are now “credits”, not tracks, and a four-track album like Sunn’s latest costs 12 credits. Downloading this album would eat just 8% (4/50) of my monthly allowance — now it takes 40% (12/30). And I couldn’t care less about the Sony catalog — for me eMusic has always been about independent labels. Time to find a new pusher for my music fix, I guess.