Monday, August 8, 2011

Watch Wait For The Throne

By the time you read this people will be slathering praise upon Watch The Throne.  People will be calling it an achievement for Kanye West (high praise) and Jay-Z's best album in years (completely believable.)

I will not be one of those people.

In fact it's highly unlikely that I'll be picking up the album before the month is almost over.  Allow me to explain.

Y'see Watch The Throne has a wacky release schedule.  It's currently available as a digital release on iTunes.  Next, i'll be released as a physical cd in stores, with Best Buy getting the exclusive rights to deluxe edition of the album for two weeks.  After that other stores will be able to see the deluxe edition.

Is it me or is that a convoluted way to release an album?

Now, I'm going to buy Watch The Throne, but I won't be contributing to the assuredly substantial first week numbers for a few reasons.

Firstly, while I enjoy getting something "new" as much as the next person, I'm not going to buy an album more than one (unless of course I've lost my original version.)  Today, everyone is going to be talking about Watch The Throne and everyone talking about it will have purchased it from iTunes or downloaded it illegally.  As someone who actually enjoys the physical experience of cds, I'm not doing the digital thing.

I can probably count on one hand the number of releases that I've purchased digitally. I don't do it.  I'm will to go the extra mile to get the actual cd, despite digitally being immensely more convenient.  I have a decent cd collection and I've tasked myself with seeing that it grows.

Secondly, I'm not buying a cd from Best Buy.  When I want a cd (or dvd for that matter) I support my local record shop The Sound Garden.  Whenever possible, I try to avoid doing the "big box" thing.

I'll admit that I do occasionally shop at Best Buy; if I need some wires or cables, if I need blank cds or dvds, when I bought my Apple TV.  But buying something from Best Buy that I could buy from The Sound Garden would make me feel cheap and dirty.

The people at The Sound Garden are genuinely cool people.  When I shop there they're friendly, helpful and we usually end up in a conversation.  I sleep better at night knowing that I'm supporting them by being a patron of The Sound Garden.

And lastly, while I could get the regular version of Watch The Throne from The Sound Garden earlier, I've got no problem waiting a couple weeks for them to get the deluxe version.

Now I'm sure that the labels involved got a serious kickback from Best Buy in return for those exclusivity rights to the deluxe edition, but I've got to wonder if it's worth it considering all of the negative publicity the move generated. You'd think that record labels would be trying to salvage sagging sales not burning bridges with the buying public.

So, as much as I'd love to support two guys who, individually, have more money than everyone in my family combined, I'd much rather support the good folks at The Sound Garden and just wait for The Throne.

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