Photo courtesy of Radio Survivor
Yesterday at 5 p.m. EDT, to much fanfare and anticipation, the music streaming service Tidal was launched – or rather, relaunched. Mogul and rapper Jay Z has spearheaded the initiative, and the amount of star power packed into his press conference was impressive, but what does the revamped Tidal service mean for the music industry, and more importantly, for the consumer?
TIDAL: A Brief History
Scandinavian tech company Aspiro, which was founded in 1998, launched TIDAL in 2014, a complement to their other streaming service WiMP, which was launched in 2010. Throughout Aspiro’s history, the company has acquired various smaller tech startups, numbering at least 13 in total between 2000 and 2008. As of January 30 of this year, Aspiro announced a $56 million takeover bid from Project Panther Bidco, Ltd. Project Panther is indirectly owned and controlled by Shawn Carter, aka, Jay Z. While some shareholders objected to the takeover, claiming it undervalued the growth potential of Aspiro, the bid was accepted on March 13, 2015, with over 90% of shareholders in favor of the acquisition.
TIDAL itself is a relatively young streaming service. What differentiates it from other similar streaming services is that it boasts lossless audio streaming and HD video (currently available only to TIDAL HiFi subscribers), with over 25 million tracks and 75,000 music videos at its disposal at this point in time, with plans to increase the media library. Unlike many other competitors, however, TIDAL is a subscription-only service. Their base-plan, TIDAL Premium, will cost you $9.99 per month, with an option to upgrade to the more high-definition TIDAL HiFi for $19.99 monthly.
The following is a guest article by Tyler Thursby.
My first introduction to Arcade Fire's Reflektor was through an enchanting self-titled music video, nearly eight minutes of black & white footage that read much like a short film. Cinematic is an appropriate term when describing the sound of Arcade Fire's latest album Reflektor as a whole, every vaulted track materializing a story one has to imagine could easily be adapted to the screen.
Reflektor's cinematic qualities and large sound packs an unshakable confidence behind it. Just when things threaten to spill over into an unmanageable chaos, the instrumentation finds order in the storm. That type of control is something Arcade Fire has worked long to master, but it certainly doesn't hurt to be working with David Bowie throughout the process of recording.