The music industry is forward-thinking, but who would have predicted that a #1 NFT album would debut in the UK charts as early as 2022? Muse, the English rock band, has already had six number one albums, but what makes their latest release, ‘Will of the People,’ so special is that it is the first-ever NFT record to reach the top of the charts.
Muse’s Will of the People is limited to 1,000 NFTs
The NFT version of the album accounts for less than 2% of total sales in the United Kingdom, where 51,500 copies were sold in the first week. The NFT music album format is known as “digital pressing,” It is already popular in the United States, with Hip Hop supergroup Mount Westmore releasing their own NFT album, limited to only 505 copies.
NFT albums have the advantage of including exclusive bonuses such as:
- FLAC files in high resolution,
- limited edition album art
- Membership in the NFT fan club
- Unlockable rewards and discounts.
The success of Muse’s ‘Will of the People album comes just months after the United Kingdom approved NFT album sales being counted in official music charts, heightening the significance of the historic occasion. Serenade, the album’s distributor, confirms that NFTs are an innovation in the music industry: “It’s a new way to experience music that unites artists and fans through a collectible format.”
While incorporating blockchain into the music industry is unavoidable, Serenade emphasizes the importance of remaining environmentally conscious while minting music album NFTs. To that end, the distributor chose the Polygon network—a carbon-neutral blockchain that has risen in popularity thanks to critical acclaim from Disney and Coca-Cola. As a result, the music industry is steadily approaching the self-predicted metaverse, with Polygon working to become carbon-negative by the end of 2022.
On the other hand
The highly centralized music scene currently revolves around large corporations such as Spotify and Apple. As a result, the music industry is looking for a decentralized solution; however, blockchain music platforms like Audius have issues, as the Audius platform was recently hacked.
Why You Should Be Concerned
Blockchain technology has the potential to address centralization issues in the music industry. A year ago, legendary artists such as Paul McCartney, Kate Bush, and 156 others signed a petition to the UK Prime Minister urging them to “fix streaming” due to the prevalence of many independent artists claiming to have been ripped off by major music streaming services. Ultimately, such services control up to one-third of the distribution process.