Wayne Static: 'Albums Aren't Important, Not a Big Deal Anymore'

"Nobody buys music anymore," says Static-X mainman.

Ultimate Guitar

Static-X mastermind Wayne Static gave an update regarding the new material he's working on, sharing a less optimistic stance regarding the music world. "I'm trying to figure where I wanna go with it, that's the biggest obstacle right now 'cause I don't wanna repeat myself," Wayne told the Gauntlet. "It's kinda hard - each record you do it gets harder and harder. I think I'm good at what I do. And people ask me 'Why did your solo album sound like Static-X?' I'm like, 'Well, because that's me [chuckle].' I wrote Static-X songs. What did you think you were gonna get - Nickelback?" After noting that he is looking for a way to spice up his material and freshen up the approach, the frontman focused on the rock crowd and the overall state of music industry. "You can't please everyone and there's always gonna be people that - I could redo 'Wisconsin Death Trip' and some people would be overjoyed and some people would be mad." The singer added, "Releasing CDs is not as important as it used to be, I don't think it's that big of a deal anymore. Nobody buys music anymore. I'm kinda at a point in my career where I think I could just go out and tour and people are fine with that - just hearing the old songs."

42 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Well, I think he's right for bands like his - song after song that aren't thematically linked (not that that's bad). But bands like Tool/ISIS/Mastodon wouldn't sell a thing if all they did was drop a song here and there - those sorts of bands and the fans that follow them rely on albums.
    Actually his point was that (most) people don't BUY albums anymore, which is 100% true. Most musicians can only make money through constant touring which means less time to sit around writing and recording and less of a payoff.
    Where did you get that info? A lot of people I know still buy albums, but they usually buy albums that are worth the money.
    Yeah, but "back then" you didn't know if an album was particularly good or not. You just bought the dang thing and listened to it. If it wasn't that "good", it eventually grew on you and you began to appreciate it more as you listened instead of just "deleting" it. There's good and bad with both though.
    The "growing on you" process, is, in my opinion, what it's "all about". The reason that I write music is to challenge conventional reception to lyrics, melodies, song structures, whatever. I hope this is called depth. Not that I am some great writer, but I try. The album experience is vital for many true lovers of music. "Filler" is o f course subjective. Give it a chance maybe? Mr Static doesn't help the songwriters cause by diminishing the importance of the album concept. His opinion matters, but it doesn't help an already fragile medium.
    No musician ever made money through records anyway. Record labels give most artists a pathetic cut on their own work, many bands past and present have ended up losing their own money while the record label profited from their album. Only rediculously successful bands like Metallica could ever make a reasonable amount of money off the 'royalties' they recieve for their records, and even then they'd have bugger all if they didn't tour. Before file sharing it was tape swapping that was supposedly 'killing the industry' and depriving artists of their precious record royalties, it was BS then and it's BS now. Tape swapping was the basis for a lot of creativity, particularly European Extreme Metal, and file sharing is doing even more to breed creativity. Long live I say.
    Emperor's Child
    Let's not forget that there are a few musicians that don't tour at all: Arjen Lucassen, Sithu Aye, Plini... Some of these will be independent artists.
    Thank you for bringing up Sithu Aye and Plini who are, I think, the models for the modern musician. Every time someone complains that the internet killed "good" rock music I point to those guys and David Maxim Micic and Cloudkicker.
    It's true that many artists had shitty deals even before the internet but it's absolutely untrue that "No musician made money through records". Touring has always been the bread and butter of a musician's livelihood, but album sales were the jam. That simply doesn't exist anymore. The rest of your argument is BS based on the amount that album sales have plummeted in the 21st century. I'm not saying that file-sharing is a bad thing, I'm merely pointing out the factuality of Wayne Static's statement.
    You know, I think rock and metal bands should release free mixtapes like rappers. I would love to hear the raw, on the spot energy. It'd help hype the next albums when they actually make one.
    that would be pretty cool, providing they did a proper album at the end of it like you say
    Thats a GREAT idea! WHY NOT?! It works for the rap community why not the Rock/Metal community? I'm 100% sure Lil Wayne became far more popular from the countless mixtapes he's put out and all he does is make metaphors to female genitalia over and over! ...Someone needs to start a website for Rock/Metal mixtapes!
    Wow dude, good idea. A lot of bands are still making demos for record labels and junk, but that's just a waste of time really. They'd be better off releasing demos for free on t'interwebs, demonstrate their abilities to the public, not just record execs. I know if I can get my band shit together I shall insist on uping demos to Soundcloud, Youtube and any other site that'll host it.
    Emperor's Child
    There are a few artists that have done this such as Bulb of Periphery and Acle Kahney of Tesseract. Then you've got bands that have released completely free albums such as Intervals, Cloudkicker and Radiohead.
    "Releasing CDs is not as important as it used to be, I don't think it's that big of a deal anymore. Nobody buys music anymore." Correction: Nobody buys Static-X music anymore.
    Throwing the term "mastermind" around quite loosely nowadays.
    Course they do...they just stopped buying his music a long time ago. And listen to what Jamie_hough said.
    i think hes got a point i mean static x isnt some huge band alot of people know but i used to really dig em back in the day but id be curious to find out what he can pull together for another album. (i still buy cds!!!! idc i hate downloading it sounds to compressed and its illegal) i like supporting my bands
    Thank you for buying cd's and music in general. ANY debate about not paying for music is an exercise in shame. My gear, guitars, drums, etcetera are expensive. The recording, mastering, copywriting, physical packaging, and distribution of my record is expensive. We, a lot of folks not all, are disgusting in our distorted views about paying musicians, songwriters, performers what they are worth. NO respect. Listen to "Red Barchetta". "Don't stand so close to me". Masterpieces that we take for granted. We love, love, love these songs. They did not just appear out of thin air. They were CRAFTED.
    What happens if bands go on tour and play new music not released on albums in addition to their older music? Chaos..
    Nobody buys cds huh? Even though I don't think much of them, thought Avenged Sevenfold just went number 1 in the UK with their new album
    Yeah, but if A7X sold 7 Cd's and the other guy sold 5 . . . that doesn't exactly prove your point, and yes I know numbers are exagerrated
    My band does EP's rather then full length albums. It still gives you the ability to still do artwork, and it makes you focus on your stronger songs. Instead of having 3 or 4 great songs, and 7 or 8 ok songs.
    I like the idea, but in reality i kinda want to hear all the material, if i really like a band i'm probably going to love most of their work even if some songs standout a bit more than other songs. I've never really felt that most albums are full of fillers as some people seem to say, actually i think it's pretty damn rare.
    A lot of album formatting is just based off tradition from space sizes of formats. I think depending on the band and their position sometimes I'd rather get a solid EP or good series of singles than a half-assed album for the sake of an album. Digital realm allows to for more freedom of structure. I'd rather people experiment with that than make albums of filler that only focus on the popular tracks people will get on iTunes.
    As someone who records from home, I have released both EPs and albums and really prefer albums. For me, getting new music is better than seeing a band live. The more content I have to enjoy the better. It is frustrating when bands take too long to release new material - especially in the modern environment where music is so instantly accessible it is hard to stay loyal to bands when they take more than a couple of years to release new material (I'm looking at you McCartney!)
    A lot of people these days either buy or just pirate some songs from albums digitally and don't buy into the whole product, mainly because they just want certain songs and not the others. Personally, I tend to find that most singles from bands I like don't always fully represent a new body of work (I like to hear the album in full before judging), but to a certain extent Wayne Static isn't too far off on this one.