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Tidal branded ‘tribalistic’ and ‘commercial bullshit’ by leading artist

Luke Johnson

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Tidal

Tidal has courted both plaudits and criticism since launching late last month, and now the world’s most popular folk band has waded into the debate.

Speaking in a recent interview with The Daily Beast, Mumford & Sons frontman Marcus Mumford has vented his frustrations with the costly, artist-owned streaming service, branding those behind the offering “new school fucking plutocrats.”

Tidal is an artist-owned streaming service co-founded by Jay Z and backed and promoted by the likes of Madonna, Rihanna, Beyonce and Kanye West.

According to Mumford, however, it’s a ‘tribalistic’ platform that will ultimately stifle the music industry.

“I’m not into the tribalistic aspect of it – that’s just commercial bullshit,” Mumford said.

“We just want to play music and I don’t want to align myself with Spotify, Beats, Tidal or whatever. We want people to listen to our music in their most comfortable way, and if they’re not up for paying for it, I don’t really care.”

A number of artists have pulled tracks, albums or – in the case of Taylor Swift – their entire back catalogues from rival streaming services such as Spotify recently over earnings and rights concerns.

Mumford, however, has suggested that greed, not industry evolution is behind these moves.

“A brand of our size shouldn’t be complaining,” he said. “When they say it’s artist-owned, it’s owned by those rich, wealthy artists.”

Mumford is not alone in his Tidal criticisms either, band mate Winston Marshall added: “We don’t want to be part of some Tidal ‘streaming revolution’, nor do I understand [Swift’s] argument.

“The focus is slightly missed. Music is changing, it’s fucking changing. This is how people are going to listen to music now – streaming. So diversify as a band. It doesn’t mean selling your songs to adverts.”

Related: Tidal: The Story so Far

Tidal offers two subscription options for Spotify-shunners, with a high-definition audio option available alongside a standard model.

The lossless offering isn’t cheap however, a subscription will set you back a penny shy of £20 per month.

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