“Danger Mouse’s new project Dark Night Of The Soul consists of
an album length piece of music by Danger Mouse, Sparklehorse
and a host of guest vocalists, along with a collection of
original David Lynch photography inspired by and based on the
music. The photographs, which provide a visual narrative for
the music, are compiled in a limited edition, hand numbered
100+ page book which will now come with a blank, recordable
CD-R. All copies will be clearly labeled: “For Legal Reasons,
enclosed CD-R contains no music. Use it as you will.”
The point being, of course, that fans are perfectly capable of burning their own CDs from the music files already circulating on P2P sites. Danger Mouse and the music distributor he is signed with, EMI, do not exactly see eye-to-eye, especialy since the release by Danger Mouse of The Grey Album (mashing the Beatles) a couple of years ago. Presumably, EMI owns the copyright to Danger Mouse’s releases under standard contract terms.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation has posted a legal analysis:
“Here’s where an interesting copyright law wrinkle might step in — if the blank CD-R is a royalty-paid “music CD-R,” then the copies made by fans (whether made from NPR or P2P) would be legal under 17 U.S.C. 1008, which provides that no infringement lawsuit may be “based on the noncommercial use by a consumer of [a digital audio recording] medium for making digital musical recordings.” Digital audio recording medium (DARM) is defined to include “music CD-Rs” on which a royalty is paid to copyright owners.”
No less intriguing is the fact that this nose-thumbing blank CD is connected to a presumably tightly-copyrighted limited edition book of photographs by director David Lynch.
The music itself is available, streamed, on NPR.
The album has it’s own website: http://www.dnots.com/
Stay tuned, as they say. This is going to be interesting.