On Eve Of Relaunch, eMusic Loses 3 Key Indie Labels. Subscribers Not Happy.
Just days before a major relaunch, eMusic has lost three respected independent label groups. Music from Domino, Merge and the Beggars Group of labels which includes 4AD and Matador and artists like Arcade Fire, Spoon, Belle & Sebastian, Cat Power, and Yo La Tengo will no longer be available as of November 18th. eMusic is scheduled to change subscription pricing later this month as it adds 250,000 tracks from UMG, the last major label to come aboard.
eMusic notified subscribers in an email Tuesday, but offered no reason for the change. On the eMusic forum, the reaction was negative with more than one subscriber predicting eMusic's decline and offering their own explanation of why indie labels are leaving the service:
"its inevitable. the math is straight-forward and its not good for the smaller labels when they have to compete against big back catalogs from the majors. add to it they were the ones who took all the risk in going digital many years before the bigs. this is their way of saying 'thx for screwing us over.'
"let me be perfectly clear: at the pricing you're moving to, emusic will primarily be a distributor for the big labels – hell, make it exclusively. the labels who made emusic's footprint as large as it is are getting hosed and they know it."
"i can't see how you can turn back, but really – at this point we're all looking at this as "you made your bed…"