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Death Grips dropped after publishing angry Sony email

By | Published on Friday 2 November 2012

Death Grips

Having put their new album ‘No Love Deep Web’ up online as a free download last month, apparently due to Sony Music being a bit slow to confirm a release date for it, Death Grips have now published a screengrab of the email supposedly sent to their manager Peter Katsis by their US label, Sony subsidiary Epic, after that stunt.

Epic Records’ SVP of Business & Legal Affairs Heath Kudler wrote in the email, dated 1 Oct – the same day as the leak: “Epic is extremely upset and disappointed that the artist decided to release an album without Epic’s knowledge or involvement. As you know, the artist has not only blatantly breached a number of provisions in the applicable recording agreement, it also has wilfully infringed Epic’s copyright rights with respect to these masters. Equally important, without provocation, the artist has made false and disparaging statements on various websites about Epic. All this, despite the fact that Epic has done nothing except wholeheartedly supported the band, even though the band has made certain decisions that have financially damaged Epic”.

He continues: “Given the situation in which Epic finds itself, please immediately pull the album from all websites on which it is currently being distributed. In addition, please promptly provide the masters (which Epic owns) to us. Once we have cleared the track, we intend to quickly put the album up for sale. This album will not count towards the Recording Commitment. As I am sure you understand, Epic will not [be able to] pay for an album that has already been downloaded by thousands of people”.

Following this latest private-email-publishing stunt, Epic announced yesterday that it was now in the process of terminating the band’s contract, issuing a statement, published by Pitchfork, that reads: “Epic Records is a music first company that breaks new artists. That is our mission and our mandate. Unfortunately, when [third-party orchestrated] marketing and publicity stunts trump the actual music, we must remind ourselves of our core values. To that end, effective immediately, we are working to dissolve our relationship with Death Grips. We wish them well”.

Never mind though, ‘No Love Deep Web’ is still available via the band’s website (even though that went down for a time shortly after the original leak) and their SoundCloud page. And we should note that the latter, with censored artwork, is a whole lot safer for work than the former.