Making one album a year is no longer enough (unless you're Adele)

Adele has bucked every trend in the industry – but increasingly, acts like Drake are realising that the promotional cycle centred around albums no longer works...

 Master of Meme's: Drake in Hotline Bling

Master of Meme's: Drake in Hotline Bling

Traditional albums may be on their way out as an important benchmark of an artist’s career, but they still feel important today because they are the long form artistic statement with which the music world is most familiar. What musicians are doing now is taking advantage of this perception by incorporating the album into the constant stream of content fans expect from them.

The concept is still fresh, so releasing multiple albums a year feels like a groundbreaking move. In reality, it’s the next logical step: albums are no longer a mile marker, just another part of the road, and album release cycles seem to be catching up to this idea. What is this the next step towards? Probably something we can’t wrap our heads around yet, like Drake’s busy 2015.

Adele is trying to subvert this changing of the tide with her release strategy for her latest album, 25: she has made the album an actual event by keeping it off streaming services, forcing listeners to actually buy the record instead of queuing it up on Spotify. And it’s worked, moving over 3.4 million copies in the US in its first week and over 800,000 in the UK: both all-time records. But as Pigeons & Planes editor-in-chief Jacob Moore put it, the global megastar is probably more of a rare exception than a re-establishment of the new normal.

~ The Guardian - November 2015

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