More often than not, labels retain ownership of an albums’ master copies, meaning they get a cut of the profits and some control over how the songs are used. So, when Minneapolis alt-hip-hop artist Astronautalis satisfied his contract with his label Fake Four last year and was given control of the masters to his flawless 2011 album This Is Our Science, it was understandably a big deal.
Then, just months later, the owner of short-lived Orlando label Fighting Records sent Astronautalis an email voluntarily releasing the rights to the rapper’s first two records, You and Yer Good Ideas and The Might Oceans & Nine Dark Theaters. There was no prompting and no reason for the label to do this – just good karma.
Astronautalis was so thrilled by the news that he decided to celebrate by releasing a trio of songs for free via his website. While all 1,000 free downloads have since been used, the tracks are still available to stream on SoundCloud (or purchase on pay sites for $2.97). Below, you can take a listen to the previously unheard “This City Ain’t Just A Skyline” from the This Is Our Science sessions, plus remixes of that album’s “Dimitri Mendeleev” and “Contrails” by Paper Tiger and Jel, respectively.
Plus, catch Astronautalis live next month as he tours the US.
Astronautalis 2014 Tour Dates:
03/06 – Madison, WI @ UW Madison
03/12 – St. Louis, MO @ Duck Room at Blueberry Hill
03/16 – Dallas, TX @ Spillover Music Festival
03/18 – Phoenix, AZ @ The Crescent Ballroom
03/20 – Carlsbad, CA @ Boar Cross’n
03/22 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Satellite
03/23 – San Francisco, CA @ Thee Parkside
03/24 – Portland, OR @ Star Theatre
03/25 – Seattle, WA @ The Vera Project
03/26 – Boise, ID @ The Reef
03/27 – Salt Lake City, UT @ The Urban Lounge
03/28 – Fort Collins, CO @ Road 34
03/29 – Denver, CO @ Marquis Theater
03/30 – Lincoln, NE @ Vega