Radiohead’s Thom Yorke drops new solo album via BitTorrent

SHARE Radiohead’s Thom Yorke drops new solo album via BitTorrent

BY MARK GUARINO | SUN-TIMES MUSIC WRITER

Thom Yorke of Radiohead announced the immediate release of a new album Friday, available via BitTorrent, the peer-to-peer online distribution network.

In a statement released late Friday morning and attributed to both Yorke and producer Nigel Godrich, the album, titled “Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes,” was described as “an experiment to see if the mechanics of the system are something that the general public can get its head around.”

“If it works well it could be an effective way of handling some control of internet commerce back to people who are creating the work. Enabling the people who make either music, video or any other kind of digital content to sell it themselves. Bypassing the self elected [sic] gate-keepers [sic]. If it works anyone can do this exactly as we have done,” the statement reads.

The album is available behind a paywall; the statement did not provide a price for the files, but the album lists as $6 via his website.

Get the album here.

The unorthodox release reflects a continuing experimentation by marquee artists to release music outside the realm of the major label system. Earlier this month, U2 sold the band’s latest album to Apple, which then distributed it for free to users via iTunes. Radiohead itself released its 2007 album “In Rainbows” itself via the band’s website as a cost determined by fans. Yorke does not allow his solo music on Spotify, Pandora and other streaming services, arguing they prevent artists from earning money directly.

Last year he told an interviewer Spotify represented “the last desperate fart of a dying corpse.”

BitTorrent is often derided by the music industry because it is the file transferring software of choice for user to pirate movies and music online. “Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes” is his second solo album.

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