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Is the Deluxe Album Trend Bad For Music?

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Melody Bot, Apr 1, 2021.

  1. Melody Bot

    Your friendly little forum bot. Staff Member

    This article has been imported from for discussion. All of the forum rules still apply.

    I found this conversation over at Complex, talking about the “deluxe album” trend, interesting:

    Whenever an artist released a deluxe album last year, there were usually comments like “no one asked for this.” And in theory, I can agree with the perspective that less is more. Artists like Kendrick Lamar and Frank Ocean have built incredible legacies by being selective with the music they’ve decided to share with the world. But complaining about new music has always been a ridiculous concept to me. No one is forcing you to listen to these deluxe albums if you don’t want to. They serve a purpose. Hardcore fans will be happy to hear new music, and casual listeners can pick through and save their favorite songs to playlists. We always hear stories about rappers like Future and Thug making eight songs in a night, so why not share some of those with fans? During a pandemic when artists were scrambling for ways to make money, this trend makes sense. I will admit one downside, though, is it opens the door for fans to start pressuring artists into dropping more music just moments after the release of a new project. Watching fans hound Playboi Carti to release a deluxe album full of leaks within hours of Whole Lotta Red dropping was a low point. Let him live for a minute. He finally dropped the album!

    Personally, I’m more a fan of deluxe albums than I am the “new” EP re-packaging for streaming services technique. (Or just releasing only singles.) I’m always down for more music from the artists I love, but I think letting the album breathe after its release, for fans to sit with and digest, is also important.


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    bradsonemanband likes this.
  2. mrenkens007

    Surprise, Surprise Prestigious

    This is interesting.

    As time has gone, I've become more inclined to wait for a deluxe album pressing than I am a standard, not sure how that plays into this. For example, I'm basically awaiting XX-year pressings for most of The National's newer releases because of how amazing the recent High Violet reissue was, so hoping for the same across the board. And Manchester's METN 10-year press is something I've been waiting on for years with the extra EP added on.

    But yeah, more music from an album/era of a band I love is never going to be a negative for me.
  3. CMilliken


    Depends. A lot of times it's really annoying when buying digital. Want to have that release and then a couple weeks later they release a deluxe version. At that point it seems like a number/money grab. Most of the ones I saw released last year were released within weeks of the original version. This is only annoying to me because I still buy most of my music and only stream once in awhile.

    Seeing something like a 10 year anniversary version is much different to me.
    Pepetito likes this.
  4. .K.

    Trusted Prestigious

    I like deluxe releases, just have it as an option on release date. More music is better than less when it comes to having more songs, alt versions and covers. It only feels sneaky when it just live versions or demos that sound similar to the final version.
    Jfletch and Pepetito like this.
  5. Craig Manning

    @FurtherFromSky Moderator

    Anything that keeps artists from going the "I'm just going to release singles and EPs from now on" route is a good thing, for me. Deluxe editions can be kind of annoying, but they are the lesser of several evils.
  6. crowntownguy

    I think I'm growing into someone you can trust Supporter

    My favorite artist Donovan Woods just released a Deluxe Version of his 2020 record last week with 4 new songs on it. One of the songs is a banger, the others I would be fine without. I think a Deluxe version should be either A) on release day or B) 6+ months after the initial release with some B-sides. I consume 99.9% of my music via Spotify, so its no real skin of my back to de-favorite the original album and favorite the Deluxe. I don't really care if B-sides are packaged as a deluxe or as a separate EP because of Spotify, but if I was buying physical and the only way to get access to one awesome song is to re-buy an album I already have then I'd be a little miffed.
    morken likes this.
  7. Murph

    Newbie Supporter

    The only deluxe edition I felt I needed to buy (outside of T.S. physical copies where you don’t have a choice anyway) was Neighborhoods.

    The fact that the deluxe songs were included in the middle of the album made it feel like it was the definitive version rather than most deluxe albums where it just feels like there are some songs tacked on at the end.
  8. .K.

    Trusted Prestigious

    I really like the two originals and the alt version of Grew Apart. The kids choir version with a fine.

    I always make my own deluxe versions of a sort. Singles or whatever release in an album era.
  9. Jfletch

    Newbie Supporter

    I'm good with deluxe albums but only if released on the release date or as a 10 year anniversary re-issue. Give me the choice on the release date if I want to pay more for more. But don't come out with it a few months later. The chances of me buying another whole album when I already have most of the songs on there is slim
    parkerxcore likes this.
  10. SupMikecheck


    Deluxe Editions in the streaming age? They should just call them “We signed a record deal promising to release five albums, heres our fifth with 2 acoustic tracks of the singles, we are now leaving our label and going independent”
  11. Bartek T.

    D'oh! Prestigious

    I hate them, they fuck up my scrobble count on last fm hahah
    Analog Drummer and CMilliken like this.
  12. Phil507

    Trusted Supporter

    I love deluxe editions and re-tag everything in my library as a standard album to not fuck with play counts on Last.FM. I also wish more artists would clear out their vaults and reissue some older albums with all the B-Sides. Coldplay's "A Rush Of Blood To The Head", for example, has about 7-8 great tracks that are still tough to find. That album is begging for a 20th anniversary reissue though it seems unlikely given they didn't reissue Parachutes. Weezer's Green album as well would be an excellent reissue as there are about 5-6 extra songs hanging around that could be tacked on.

    I do understand the frustration of someone releasing a deluxe edition 6 months later but I think, particularly in the pandemic, acts with more time on their hands are recording and releasing new songs on a deluxe can be more of a low stakes way of engaging with their audience as opposed to a whole album cycle. As a music nerd (and a pirating music nerd at that) I like having things collected on albums as I'm more apt to listen to an album rather than one-off singles and or short EP's.
    Analog Drummer and Bartek T. like this.
  13. Analog Drummer


    As a Spotify streamer getting 6 new songs on Biebers album a week after it came out for free was pretty sweet, although I’d have been fine with a few more weeks to absorb the OG release