Trent Reznor (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)

Nine Inch Nails‘ Trent Reznor has hit out against streaming, saying it has “mortally wounded” many artists.

The musician made the comments in a recent GQ interview, where he took aim at companies such as Spotify and Apple Music for their payment terms.

“I think the terrible payout of streaming services has mortally wounded a whole tier of artists that make being an artist unsustainable,” he said.

“And it’s great if you’re Drake, and it’s not great if you’re Grizzly Bear. And the reality is: Take a look around. We’ve had enough time for the whole ‘All the boats rise’ argument to see they don’t all rise. Those boats rise. These boats don’t. They can’t make money in any means. And I think that’s bad for art.”

Reznor also said he “thought maybe at Apple there could be influence to pay in a more fair or significant way, because a lot of these services are just a rounding error compared to what comes in elsewhere, unlike Spotify where their whole business is that.”

Nince Inch Nails, Trent Reznor
Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails performs at Riot Fest in Chicago, Illinois, on Sunday September 18, 2022. CREDIT: Christopher Dilts/Sipa USA/Alamy

He continued: “But that’s tied to a lot of other political things and label issues, and everyone’s trying to hold onto their little piece of the pie and it is what it is. I also realize, I think that people just want to turn the faucet on and have music come in. They’re not really concerned about all the romantic shit I thought mattered.”

The criticism comes amongst the news that Spotify has officially demonetised all tracks with less than 1,000 streams. The new policy came into effect on April 1, though the move has been planned by the platform for some time.

It’s a policy that has been criticised by many artists, including Murray Matravers of the band formerly known as Easy Life. He told NME that Spotify was a “great thing” for discovering music but said that “the royalty rate is terrible”.

“I assumed as a naive young man that if we got to where we are now then I would be really, really rich,” he said. “That’s just not the case sadly. I just want to see artists getting paid for selling records. Wouldn’t that be good? That would be a good place to start.”

Elsewhere in the GQ interview, Reznor and bandmate Atticus Ross opened up about their plans for a new album, music festival, TV show, XR game and clothing line.

The post Nine Inch Nails’ Trent Reznor says streaming has “mortally wounded” many artists: “It’s great if you’re Drake, it’s not great if you’re Grizzly Bear” appeared first on NME.


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