The State of the Album

Albums are the musician’s artistic statement to the world as well as the soundtracks to our lives. But is the album nearing the end of its relevancy in today’s music market? According to an article from The Guardian, it is only a matter of time before the album is rendered a relic of music culture. As a whole, CD and digital sales are declining. Of course, there are some recent exceptions (Adele’s 21 and Taylor Swift’s Red, anyone?) but even some of 2013’s most buzzworthy pop artists (Katy Perry’s Prism, Miley Cyrus’ Bangerz) are falling short of expectations for their initial sales numbers, despite massive promotional pushes from their teams. They can roar and break down those walls all they want, but it has become a major challenge for musicians to reach their album sales goals.

All we hear is how illegal file downloading and audio streaming are killing the industry, and how the quality of today’s music is subpar, but really, it all comes down to the fact that the way we listen to music has changed. In order to save the state of the album, we need to look at how our consumption habits have transformed in the twenty-first century (with the rise of digital) and how these factors affect our purchasing decisions…

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Image by islandphotoblog.