If you’ve read a story about the crowdfunding website Kickstarter today, chances are that it’s probably about Amanda Palmer raising a quarter million dollars in a day. But we bring your attention to another Kickstarter project, one that hasn’t reached its goal yet, by a new group comprised of some familiar names: Digital Noise Academy.
Formed by Ken Andrews (Failure, Year of the Rabbit), Justin Meldal-Johnsen (Nine Inch Nails, Beck, Air, M83), Charlotte Martin, Sharky Laguana (Creeper Lagoon), Fernando Sanchez (Chris Cornell), and Jordon Zadorozny (Blinker the Star), Digital Noise Academy – or DNA – originally started in 2009, but remained dormant until recently. In order to finally record and release their debut album, the band resorted to a Kickstarter project – basically, a website where fans/supporters can “donate” various amounts of money, in exchange for certain rewards from whoever needs the funding. To get a better picture of the idea, watch DNA explain it in the following video (which also contains some of their music):
As detailed on the project’s page, ten bucks will get you a digital download of DNA’s album, while as much as five thousand dollars can get you a recording session with the band. Their goal of $80k might seem a bit steep, but the costs are broken down in the following way: “$30k for remaining recording costs; $20k for reward fulfillment (CD Manufacturing, throwing a release party, etc.); $30k for a 5k payment to each of the six band members for their musical contributions.” While there have been few Kickstarter musical projects involving quite as much money as this one (according to The New York Times), it’s groundbreaking to see increasingly high-profile artists getting involved in crowdfunding. (Listen to/download DNA’s ‘Thursday Night Party’ below:)
Given the growing popularity of Kickstarter (and some million-dollar projects), it’s great to see musicians taking another step ahead and away from record labels. Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails began to explore this territory a few years ago; after several experiments with varying levels of success, it seems like label-free crowdfunding could finally point to a viable alternative, while effectively cutting off some middlemen, as long as people continue to pay up, and the figures continue to increase. Still, the amount of $5k that each DNA musician will receive is, as Ken Andrews himself stated, “quite low”, adding that “I personally will be making a hefty financial sacrifice to carve the amount time needed to do this.” So, what are you waiting for? Go ahead and back the project.
Watch DNA’s video for Melting Inside below:
At the time of posting, the project (which launched today) had already accumulated $1k. Let’s see how it goes from there.