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> Is the album format dying?
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vidsanta
post Sep 15 2016, 06:00 AM
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With a few exceptions, artists now sell minimal numbers of albums - surely not enough to offset the cost?

They only really sell in the run-up to Xmas, and that's mostly because of people giving them as presents, rather than the fans themselves *choosing* to consume their music in that format.

Is there anything that can be done to revitalise the longer format, or will it just be down to us 'oldies' to just keep it alive, as has happened with vinyl?
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slowdown73
post Sep 15 2016, 06:45 AM
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The album market is changing due to the impact of a downturn in demand, streaming, piracy and lack of strong releases. At the same time, album prices appear to have increased in recent years with the introduction of the standard and deluxe album formats.

There are some exceptions which buck the trend such as Ed Sheehan and Adele which highlight there is still a demand for the album format. In my view, there has been a drop in the number of strong new acts coming through the market in recent years & an over focus on deriving new artists from reality tv shows which seems to produce only limited success.
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Bjork
post Sep 15 2016, 06:57 AM
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But sure they do not lose money
Especially with those prices for vinyls
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Supercell
post Sep 15 2016, 07:08 AM
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I think cherry picking has a lot to answer for. You can now simply just download the songs you like from an album if your a casual fan. Also I think we are in an era where singles are just more popular and easier than ever before to buy/listen to.

Plus whilst the download era saw single prices drop by nearly 2/3 albums haven't really followed suit, most new albums still cost around £10 which was around the same price they were before downloads came in, as soon as an album is put at half price on iTunes they get a boost in sales, sometimes increasing by serval thousand copies.
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Sqntq Clqus
post Sep 15 2016, 07:23 AM
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I think it's just down to the lack of big releases really.
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SKOB
post Sep 15 2016, 07:30 AM
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It's just crazy to pay 10 euros or pounds or whatever the local money is called to get 1 album when you can just pay that once a month and get all the stuff that's released on streaming services

which means that if everyone did it, music industry would earn so much more money.


This post has been edited by SKOB: Sep 15 2016, 07:31 AM
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timjimlee
post Sep 15 2016, 07:35 AM
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QUOTE(cqmerqn @ Sep 15 2016, 08:23 AM) *
I think it's just down to the lack of big releases really.

Yes, agreed - I think the run-in to Christmas this year will be a big test.

In recent years the number 1 Album in the few weeks before Christmas has been clear-cut however this year I think it is looking a bit more unpredictable (I guess there will be a hope that Emeli Sande comes back and sells Albums in the quantities she did with her first Album). One of the most significant Album underperfomances in recent years was Take That in terms of Sales and I also think Robbie Williams will struggle to sell anywhere near what he did in the past.


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gooddelta
post Sep 15 2016, 08:53 AM
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I seem to recall in 2009/10 new albums were regularly coming out for £7 or thereabouts though this fad soon ended.

How much does it cost to produce a CD? So how much mark-up does a typical chart album generally have?

Sure if all new albums were reduced to £5 the market would have a huge resurgence and the record labels may just about be able to make what they did before (if sales somehow doubled) but part of me also thinks it would be too little too late, people stream now and the album just isn't as popular a concept in the world of playlists and shuffling and shorter attention spans.


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M4NG0
post Sep 15 2016, 09:27 AM
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Streaming has killed the albums market, pure and simple.
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AcerBen
post Sep 15 2016, 11:40 AM
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Has the decline kinda halted recently though? It feels like we've been having 15k #1s for a few years now and it hasn't really dropped as much as some people thought. And now artists are releasing stupidly long albums because they make more money out of streaming that way - so I don't think the concept of releasing a bunch of tracks at once is dead.
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Soy Adrián
post Sep 15 2016, 11:51 AM
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It's not dead, but it's a very long term trend away from the idea of listening to 12 or so songs in a row from the same artist unless you're already a fan. The vinyl format made it so it was difficult to do anything else. CD albums were wildly popular before downloads and streaming took off, partly as CD singles were a third the price of an album anyway. Downloads put paid to that, and streaming has accelerated the process whereby you can jump between releases, artists and genres with minimal effort. The idea of the single will last a long time because our music consumption is still largely based around individual songs. Albums are becoming increasingly a niche market, with more and more artists not even bothering to release them any more. It'll take a long time for them to completely die but that's the way it's going for many people.
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dancember
post Sep 15 2016, 11:58 AM
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Less artists will release albums as time goes by probably. I've read that Calvin Harris won't be doing any more albums and I imagine more singles acts will do the same.

There's still a market for albums though especially for certain markets, so it won't fully die just yet --> the moms market, loyal indie/rock/metal fans, urban fans of artists who focus more on albums than singles (Beyonce, Kanye, Frank Ocean), teenage stans of pop artists, etc.
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SKOB
post Sep 15 2016, 12:01 PM
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Yea the fact that T Swift, Drake, Biebs and Beyonce are multi million album sellers says that albums are not only for old people BUT one must have a vision and character to carry it, just a great song or two is not enough
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post Sep 15 2016, 12:08 PM
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and more than ever now it's important that an artist's album is full of songs people actually want to listen to, as an album full of unappealing filler isn't going to get anyone on board with streaming it.
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vidsanta
post Sep 15 2016, 01:58 PM
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QUOTE(SKOB @ Sep 15 2016, 08:30 AM) *
It's just crazy to pay 10 euros or pounds or whatever the local money is called to get 1 album when you can just pay that once a month and get all the stuff that's released on streaming services

which means that if everyone did it, music industry would earn so much more money.


Personally, I spend less on music a year than a Spotify sub would cost, so it clearly wouldn't be a sensible choice for me.
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AcerBen
post Sep 15 2016, 02:21 PM
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QUOTE(vidcapper @ Sep 15 2016, 02:58 PM) *
Personally, I spend less on music a year than a Spotify sub would cost, so it clearly wouldn't be a sensible choice for me.


Yeah it isn't crazy - most people don't need access to millions of songs - they'll just get an album a few times a year
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timjimlee
post Sep 15 2016, 02:21 PM
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Album Sales are diminishing but the Album format will survive.

If anyone doubts the Album format suggest they tune in to the Mercury Prize tonight when the likes of Radiohead, The 1975, Skepta, David Bowie, Laura Mvula will be competing for the top prize - credible Artists getting the recognition they deserve because they make consistent, cohesive Music with a theme that rewards people that invest the time to discover their Music.

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andeeeeyhart
post Sep 15 2016, 03:18 PM
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It's not what it once was, but it certainly isn't dead. Big artists (Adele, Beyonce, Kanye, Taylor Swift etc) still generate far more buzz when releasing a new album than they would with a single. The singles chart, in many ways, has been more damaged due to bad turnover higher up the charts and lots of non-single tracks making the charts very stale. Album sales are dire during Summer months yes, but they recover as the year wears down.
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Nadolig Llawen!
post Sep 15 2016, 04:23 PM
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I love albums so I hope they won't ever go away. Just waiting for the next track to be released would be so boring but I love discovering a whole album of music all at once. Not sure what will happen but the album certainly isn't as appreciated as it once was.
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post Sep 15 2016, 05:57 PM
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Albums have always been, and I hope will always be, the goal of artists. Releasing a single every four months is not a replacement. It simply is not. Discovering a dozen songs at the same time is a nice experience, plus I usually listen to a full album on a long journey.

Plus, the feel of an album is just too good to lose. Playing a song on Spotify isn't, has never been, and for me will never be an investment in the artist. Playing an album could potentially become one. Whereas actually having a physical copy of the album makes me feel invested in the artist, especially when reading the liner notes where the artist thanks everybody who's helped them get to where they are.
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