The Times writes about the music labels toying with the idea of selling products without poison oops I meant DRM. Chris Anderson takes it further, arguing that the economics of music favor performance over recording. (I’m not sure about that, I still think selling recordings is a good business). Andrew Orlowski over at the Reg has a lengthy and instructive interview with music management maven Keith Harris covering related territory. But the future is already here.
James Governor sent me a link to Tim Anderson writing about Linn Records, who are an interesting outfit. The other half of the company is Linn Audio, a successful and long-lived Scottish manufacturer of high-end audio equipment, generally regarded as very good by those who care about such things. I have a Linn pre-amp and CD player and am very fond of them. All the high-end audio makers say the (lavish, expensive) technology is just a footnote to the music, but Linn really means it, they’re actually in the business of producing and selling music not just hardware. I have Shostakovich’s Symphony #5 on Linn with Dmitriev and the Leningrad Symphony; both the performance and sound are lovely.
Anyhow, you can go to that Linn Records site and buy the music for download, poison-free, encoded either in the usual MP3, or in uncompressed CD-quality WMA or, for some of the music, “studio master” quality, at a higher bit-rate than native CD. The higher the quality, the more you pay. The prices are higher than the iTunes music store, but then you’re getting more and you’re not getting poisoned.
They can’t offer Apple Lossless Encoding because Apple won’t let them.