Radiohead’s Thom Yorke surprised us all today. He just released his new album “Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes” on BitTorrent. In a letter co-written with Radiohead producer Nigel Godrich, he explained his decision to have it distributed via torrent service BitTorrent.
Here is the letter:
” As an experiment we are using a new version of BitTorrent to distribute a new Thom Yorke record. The new Torrent files have a pay gate to access a bundle of files..The files can be anything, but in this case is an ‘album’. It’s 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 handing some control of internet commerce back to people who are creating the work. Enabling those people who make either music, video or any other kind of digital content to sell it themselves. Bypassing the self elected gate-keepers. If it works anyone can do this exactly as we have done. The torrent mechanism does not require any server uploading or hosting costs or ‘cloud’ malarkey. It’s a self-contained embeddable shop front…The network not only carries the traffic, it also hosts the file. The file is in the network. Oh yes and it’s called Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes.”
The audio and video for “A Brain in a Bottle” are available for free download and the full album costs $6.00. You can find them here. The album is also available on deluxe white vinyl and “printed with a metallic silver laminate then multi-tone black and a striking neon green; the whole is enclosed in a bespoke anti-static shield bag – a metallised laminated material usually used by the electronics industry for protecting components from electrostatic interference. The bag is printed with neon green on both sides, and has a resealable grip closure.”
Ladies and gentlemen voila “Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes”:
and on vimeo: