Sunday, 14 March 2010

The Curse of Recorded Music

David Gilmour, Pink Floyd’s guitarists, is one of those musicians that have been there with me for most of my life. Everything he touched, Kate Bush included, seems to delight me. So when random messing about on the internet made me notice his 2007 live concert at Albert Hall, Remember That Night, is available on Blu-ray I thought this might be worth looking into. When I saw the Blu-ray’s specifications include a 5.1 Dolby TrueHD soundtrack I thought this might be worth getting.
So I went looking for it. I started with mainstream music shops in Australia but quickly discovered they only stock the DVD version; the Blu-ray is available only through gray imports of the “fell off the back of the truck” type.
So I went Googling, and Amazon USA came up at the top of the search results with an asking price of $26 (USD). A tall order, but after grinding my teeth I would have probably accommodated. That is, if I could: the Blu-ray on offer is regionally encoded and my Blu-ray player, a PS3, would not be able to play it.
On I went to Amazon UK, where a Blu-ray playable on my player is available for sale. Hold your breath, though: they're asking 33.50GBP for it.
No, I'm not going to pay that much for a Blu-ray. Especially not when it is clear the record company is trying to screw, yes - screw - customers outside the USA.
Curse the vile record companies!

A commentator on RRR, probably my favorite Melbourne radio station at the moment, said a few weeks ago that the biggest crime the record companies have committed is allowing entire generations of people to assume it is perfectly fine to consume music without paying for it. And he spoke as a musician that is that is hurting as a result of the record companies' incompetency.
I concur.

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