Thom Yorke: Spotify Is "Last Desperate Fart" Of Music Industry


Thom Yorke has furthered his attack on Spotify after accusing it of being bad for music earlier this year.

Speaking to Mexican website Sopitas (via NME) the Radiohead frontman said he thinks musicians need to fight the streaming service, calling it the "last gasp of the old industry".

"When we did the 'In Rainbows' thing what was most exciting was the idea you could have a direct connection between you as a musician and your audience. You cut all of it out, it's just that and that. And then all these fuckers get in a way, like Spotify suddenly trying to become the gatekeepers to the whole process. We don't need you to do it. No artists needs you to do it. We can build the shit ourselves, so fuck off," he explained.

"The majors are all over it because they see a way of re-selling all their old stuff for free, make a fortune, and not die. That's why to me, Spotify the whole thing, is such a massive battle, because it's about the future of all music. It's about whether we believe there's a future in music."

He summed up, saying,"to me this isn't the mainstream, this is is like the last fart, the last desperate fart of a dying corpse. What happens next is the important part."

Back in July Thom Yorke and Radiohead producer / Atoms For Peace bandmate Nigel Godrich began their tirade against Spotify by announcing they were pulling all of Atoms For Peace's music from the streaming service, as well as Yorke's solo album Eraser and the work of Nigel's band Ultraista.

"The reason is that new artists get paid fuck all with this model. It's an equation that just doesn't work," Nigel Godrich continued. "Meanwhile small labels and new artists can't even keep their lights on. It's just not right"

He claimed that most acts feel the same but are afraid to speak out, while Thom Yorke commented:

In a statement to Radio X at the time a spokesperson from Spotify said: "Spotify's goal is to grow a service which people love, ultimately want to pay for, and which will provide the financial support to the music industry necessary to invest in new talent and music. We want to help artists connect with their fans, find new audiences, grow their fan base and make a living from the music we all love. 

"Right now we're still in the early stages of a long-term project that's already having a hugely positive effect on artists and new music. We've already paid US$500M to rightsholders so far and by the end of 2013 this number will reach US$1bn. Much of this money is being invested in nurturing new talent and producing great new music.

"We're 100% committed to making Spotify the most artist-friendly music service possible and are constantly talking to artists and managers about how Spotify can help build their careers."

Spotify has been criticised on a number of occasions for how much they pay artists.

In November 2011 Mercury prize-nominated Jon Hopkins tweeted claiming he had been paid just £8 for 90,000 plays.

It was also reported back in 2010 that pop behemoth Lady Gaga got just $167 for one million plays of her hit Poker Face.