This week alone, we’ve brought to you brand-new tracks from Yeasayer, Baroness, Curren$y, Public Image Ltd., and even the first recording from The Afghan Whigs in five years. Of course, artists usually release these songs to entice listeners into buying their forthcoming LP. Some prefer to drop a lone single, while others (we’re looking at you, Regina Spektor) unveil several cuts in the lead-up to the record’s debut. Even still, some musicians use online venues like NPR Music to stream the full album weeks in advance.
How much of an album do you prefer to hear before you go out and purchase it? Is one track enough to satiate your hunger, or does it take a few to make it worth your investment? Would you rather have the full stream around for a bit before you even consider giving up the cheddar? Should there more more or less of an emphasis on “exclusivity,” be it with mailing lists/releasing songs through Facebook and Twitter or utilizing physical copies somehow. Is there a better way for artists to share selections from upcoming efforts, perhaps with interactive digital listening parties? Do these previews ruin the music buying/consuming experience in any way?