had no idea re: Klaxons and Glasvegas doing so horribly on album #2. I knew they hadn't sold as well, but I didn't realise to what extent.
Glasvegas' wikipedia page has an amusingly biased account of it all :D
A lot of those examples though can be attributed to the records in question being worse, no?
That often seems to get lost in these things.
It was a case of diminishing returns in pretty much all the ones I've heard from that article.
..I thought the 2nd MGMT was miles better than their debut so idk.
less commercial, rather than worse.
probably just means worse. In MGMT's case could well mean better but less commercial, which sounds like the aim, so they probably don't care but the label probably do.
as either less commercial or objectively 'worse' than their first album.
Very good point.
although, even though I quickly got tired of even the first album, I feel a bit sorry for the Klaxons... those numbers are pretty sobering.
I never got the whole galsvegas thing, depressing and not even in a good morrissey type way, but Klaxons were pretty good back in the day, albeit a bit of a nu rave fad
They were hyped up massively by the NME but I don't know anyone else who ever heard anything by them and thought more positive things than, "I guess this is OK."
Reminds me of Speech Debelle, in a way. A group of music journalists had obviously decided she was fantastic, but absolutely nobody else did. Lots of promotion but if the product isn't any good nobody's going to buy it.
It just seems odd that her second album would flop so badly after her debut sold a gazillion copies or something (though as they say ditching Jeanette Lee and Bernard Butler didn't help), whereas Adele's second album has gone through the roof.
In defence of MGMT (the second album isn't bad, honest!), they kind of deliberately set out to ditch all the people who wanted to hear more of Time to Pretend and Kids.
I still don't see it as wrecking a career though
Duffy was kind of tolerated in a this-is-obviously-a-bit-shit-but-harmless way, that ad (if I remember rightly it was premiered on prime time telly and lasted about 3 hours) seemed to trigger some sort of collective embarrassment in a how-on-earth-have-we-let-this-person-become-a-popstar way.
after beating up his girlfriend, I'm not sure a rubbish ad would cause a musician's popularity to evaporate as much as Duffy's did - OK granted those two people have rather different demographics.
And I think Duffy was only 'tolerated' by DiS type people - I imagine all the people who bought Rockferry didn't think 'this is a bit shit but what the hell'
still can't get my head round it.
I think with Duffy it was maybe more 'the powers that be' that backed off and let her flop. Who knows? I definitely think she would have gotten away with it if it hadn't been for that pesky ad.
and maybe Klaxons are the examples in which the bands were less interested in commerciality and more in creating something they liked. This side is a little bit removed from the article in which releasing an album is like trying to get a high score on an arcade machine. Still, good read though, and it's crazy in 'business terms' how far some of those bands fell.
But I still think Kids is one of their best songs. It's just a really good song, I don't care what anyone else says.
..one of the issues is that the music scene changed so much between some of these releases. The Klaxons' last effort sounded horribly dated and both they and Glasvegas tried to repeat the same trick with the expectation of success. At least with MGMT, their agenda was always to move on from their debut and as an affirmative move in that sense, they are surely in a much better position to release album 3 now. I wouldn't be surprised if we don't hear from Glasvegas or Klaxons again.
Vampire Weekend are another example of this. I don't know their sales figures, but I would've thought Contra didn't sell anywhere near as much as the debut album.
I expect the same will be for The Ting Tings too.
Higher chart positions in the UK and USA, and was in the top 70 selling albums of 2010 in both countries
but I know their debut achieved gold status in the USA (500,000 sales), something that Contra didn't manage.
so not too much of a drop off
*definitely not defending the album just because I quite liked it*
their second album also topped the US billboard chart in it's first week which was quite a big story at the time, 'band-on-indie-label tops chart shocker', and then went on to only slightly underperform from the first. Think Vampy Weeks have so far avoided falling off a cliff.
It took the first one two years to get over 400,000, whereas Contra (while still behind in sales) did that in the first year.
Comparisons between album sales are always difficult when the numbers aren't too far apart because the earlier album will have the advantage of a longer sales period.
it'd be interesting to see how many sales of the s/t came after Contra was released.
It really depends on whether they attempt to change their sound at all. I prefer Contra but I know some people dismissed it as more of the same.
Actually VW are possibly more similar to Arcade Fire. Strong word of mouth around the debut generates good long-term sales which are then replicated in good immediate sales of album number 2 regardless of quality. AF could have easily fallen off the cliff for album 3 but chose to tweak their sound and, arguably, grow up as their fans would have done in that 5-year period.
The Darkness (though the second album did go platinum apparently)
The Magic Numbers (I really loved that debut album as well)
And really expected it to be a brief article about dangerous gigs on cliff faces and the ones that don't quite make it. What's happened to Kaiser Cheifs? I ponderd, then realising it was a feature on creative possibilaties out outweighing commercial growth. I was unsurprisingly disappointed.
All the band's mentioned basically suck:
They succeeded as they got massive marketing and a couple of good tunes (I Predict a Riot, Mercy, That cover Klaxons did and that Glasvegas one they menton that Bono liked) but ultimately THEY SUCK. SO THE LOSE.
I'm gonna carry on readign now. But bascially: Shit bands fail.
sales for Coldplay increasing for every album?
rather than grating and annoying
Coldplay, like 'em or not, changed. So did U2, so did The Beatles, so did any long running band. Churn out the same post-Brit pop shit album after album and people gonna get tired.
Listen through their records, and the change isn't as evident as a Pablo Honey to The King of Limbs, or, Parachutes to Mylo Xyloto. Sure Pavement only lasted a decade - but their hype certainly didn't change inside their fanbase. I am sure they could've continued.
If Klaxons had made a record better than Myths, then they'd still be celebrated. The record could be quite samey, yet still be an attractive listen.
Klaxons left far too long to follow up the album (label disputes etc) but 3 years with nothing is far too long for a band that wasn't that massive in the first place.
Kaiser Chiefs aren't that bad on reflection- the second album sales were good and the the music scene changed a lot over the period they released albums.
regardless of whether they change or not.
They've nailed the market for people who only buy one CD a year from Tesco. See also Snow Patrol.
But then again I can't explain why no-one has assassinated Olly Murs. It's a topsy turvy world in which we live. THE MOCKNEY CUNT.
how their "release it at almost the same time" strategy goes this time round then...
Not that I bought their album, mind, but James Allan to me does not seem like the kind of fellow who has a Plan B.
he's always come across as a total nob as well so fuck him
his daddy left him.
genuinely. Semi-pro. Played for Dumbarton FC (Scottish 2nd Div) I'm told.
That have a few catchy singles, but aren't all that great (at least commercially viably great). So people buy one record and aren't particularly inspired to add another one by the same band to their collection.
second album. I still love their first album. Most bands have a hard time sustaining big sales from album to album. This is true of almost every band unless they have massive breakthrough acceptance into the mainstream. Hell look at the 2nd drums album. I don't think it had anything to do with the quality it was just kind of put out with no build up, no hype, it just kind of fell out then went away. I blame fickle fans more for this trend then the bands or albums.
is usually because most music is 'of it's time' - literally the year in which it comes out. And most record buyers don't really care about a band, they just like what is on the radio/in the papers at the time.
When a follow up album comes out two or three years later, the landscape has changed - there are new acts about, the kids who liked the record have all grown up and are interested in other things.
Interesting mention of the Ting Tings above. They released a new single 'Hands' about this time last year and it didn't do very well compared to their previous efforts. An expected second album has still not appeared. Welcome to the cliff top.
their new record has now been announced and will be out early next year apparently. I think it's likely to be one that goes over the cliff though.
just disappears. I mean you go to these shows when they band are selling big and people in the audience are going nuts, screaming like they worship them and then the 2nd album comes out and they're nowhere to be found.
In most cases it is not warranted but just an unsophisticated audience unwilling to evolve with a band. I remember knocking the 2nd Futureheads album when it first came out because I couldn't find the tunes. Years later I kick myself because I was so wrong about that album it's a brilliant classier take on their sound yet no one got it and their career never recovered. It's a shame because most bands can't have a long exciting career anymore amassing a great back catalogue to stand through time. If they make one album mistake and their done. Look at any great bands long discography and there is always a couple of mis-steps and turkeys along the way but they got past those to make some great albums.
I thought the third was much better. Not as good as the first, obviously, but then I didn't get that AT ALL to begin with. My girlfriend was WELL into it and it just got on my nerves, then I heard it at a party and was like ''oh riiiiiight'' and now I love it
Much of the audience won't necessarily be fans of the band but casual listeners who bought it on the basis of the hits. Next time around, they may have a casual interest in the new one but perhaps unlikely to buy if there isn't a key song associated with it. I bought the 1st Klaxons album, thought it was ok - but a few years later hadn't listened to it for a while, tastes had slightly changed, so no reason for me to check out their follow up.
And in terms of Duffy, it seemed like the whole hype around the second album, even before it got reviewed and released, was that she was over as an act. Certainly didn't seem to have much support behind it.
Consistently giving decent treatment to bands already written off elsewhere for being too old or faffing about too long between albums or whatever. I know that perfectly decent Futureheads record - as well as some generally dismissed follow-ups by Hot Hot Heat, The Rakes, some others I can't remember, bands 15-year-old me was HUGELY into - got a fair and generous review, and there was a total aversion to prioritising buzz bands, arduously harvesting new 'talent' (no need for a conscious effort there, surely?) and hit-friendly artists 1000 disinterested street teamers have Google alerts set up for. Was never gonna survive much longer than it did, but it's that lack of editorial heavy-handedness that effectively made it the most reliable source of music journalism going when I was growing up. *nostalgic tear*
I always used Planet Sound and Drowned in Sound as my pointers to new records and releases. DiS is fighting a bit of a lone fight in my opinon, and fighting it strongly. But Planet Sound was a loss. 10 years of breakfasts spent reading it...got into so many bands that way. And now John Earls is calling the new Kasabian album "the best album of the year". How have the mighty fallen.
On that point, I'd fucking love to see Kasabian included in that list...
to be fair two years at News of the World could probably drive ANYONE to Kasabian.
Admittedly he gave West Ryder 7/10 and called it a "transitional album," but Empire ended up featuring in his top 50 albums of 2006 list. If he calls Velociraptor! "one of the best albums of year" then it's not due to any tabloid influence; it's because he genuinely believes so. Plus that 80 score on Metacritic ain't lying!
I really do miss Planet Sound something awful though. I discovered so many great bands/albums over the years because of Earls. Hell, his review of Susumum Yokota's Symbol back in '05 essentially paved the way for my immense love of Japanese music today. And like whatisthewhat stated, he wasn't afraid to trumpet albums by bands who suddenly weren't in the spotlight anymore. Hot Hot Heat indeed: Elevator still gets much love from me.
I didn't always agree with his reviews (e.g. liking The Feeling, hating Daft Punk) but I got into bands like The Hidden Cameras, The Delgados, The Wrens and Modest Mouse through Planet Sound.
That was another benefit of the format: a band like Kasabian wouldn’t be thrust down your neck simply because they were more popular than, say, The Wrens. It was more, ’Oh, Earls likes Kasabian. Fair enough, move on.’
Wrens, Modest Mouse, Okkervil River... so many great bands I wouldn’t otherwise have had the faintest clue about. All on third, fourth, fifth albums by the time I was reading about ’em.
it's like they took their sound and mixed some XTC into it and classed it up. Give a few more chances it really grew on me. The third album they were trying to recapture the sound of the first.
The Feeling anyone?
because the first big hit is the one the radio would still be hammering - see also Scouting For Girls, whose second album spent 13 weeks in the top 40 after the first managed 54.
Not the same sort of band, I know, but Martin Carr tells a story of listening to commercial radio in his car and hearing the DJ go "the Boo Radleys have a new single out today called Find The Answer Within, so here's Wake Up Boo".
shame none of his post-Boo Radleys output matched them mind. Last Boos album =lost classic, I maintain.
fans aren't like us, who are Fans. do you know what I mean? I might have heard the new twilight sad single but i'll happily go and see no matter what my opinion is of that single, or whatever. but if someone heard the paradise coldplay track, they might not be so adventurous and not see the masses interested.
fans and Fans are quite different things - people buy what they hear and hear what they are told to like, unlike us who seek out new music and find it. no elitism here, just what i know my father and friends do. that's how it seems to work.
the two Kaiser Chief albums that sold fuck all are pretty good. especially the last one i think.
most of those bands had forever to write their first albums but were rushed into doing a second one by their labels. They don't have time to make the best album they can nor to evaluate how they should change and evolve as a band, and their audience doesn't have enough time to miss them. Note how Coldplay have three years + to make their albums.
The scene changed and they didn't. Fickle record labels are partly to blame.
Some of them are shit and just chanced a hit single on their first album. Or are signed on the basis of one or songs.
as (a) bands used to tour a lot and release albums far faster than they used to, and (b) most bands/musicians have some kind of previous existence. Kaiser Chiefs' first album was recorded as Parva etc.
and you 'desert' the band when you don't buy another
sold a bunch of records to 'casual' listeners off the back of it but weren't good enough to really get into peoples heads, so barely anyone was curious about their later releases.
A lot of very 'of their time bands' too. Klaxons sound incredibly dated already after relatively little time.
Take a band like Biffy Clyro for example of broadly comparable age to someone like Kaiser Chiefs yet without hysteric hype from the back of two good singles they've been able to really put some roots down and grow into their success. They've got a real fanbase to build upon with each new release.
I can only guess at the numbers but they must definitely have out sold each previous album.
that album they WANTED to release that the record label told them to go back and do again.
or 1996 or whenever? i mean for decades bands have been releasing 2nd or 3rd albums where the audience suddenly tails off dramatically.
also there was this article in the Guardian from '05
they called it the 'firework effect' back then.
the article is about music business, it's a bit more complex than what you think about Klaxons, Kaiser Chiefs etc.
I'm sure someone if not many have already said but, surely general decline in record sales does have a part to play as well. But yeah, people love THE BEST NEW BAND right
but in terms of stuff like the second Kaisers album selling less than the first, I just don't think it's really possible in a country with our sort of population for a band to sustain a fanbase of 2+ million - that's basically cultural saturation point, radio and press onside with actual hit singles to back it up.
they released a few singles that appealed to audiences that they didn't intend (being used on fifa soundtracks, sampled by 'chiddy bang'), in stead of their intended audience (space pop fans, brochella punters). so when they released their second album, which was better than their first in many eyes, the mainstream fans, the chiddy bang fans, the people who think indie is short for individual deserted the band.
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