Ben Folds revealed in Billboard that he is sick of dealing with the usual record-label BS, and is releasing a set of three EPs to get around it, available only on his site or at concerts.
"I'm going to do things that are really more about the music for me and less about the hype," says Folds. "Because I'm on a major label, there is no escaping the way that we have to do business when I release an album — everybody wants the 'Album of the Year' Rolling Stone bullsh*t where you get two-stars in the review and your face is all over the front. The way to bypass that for me is just to not go through the normal channels. And if I put out an EP, nobody can take it seriously."
He also addresses the issue of the future of music being single songs due to the popularity of Apple's iTunes:
Folds hints that this could be his future modus operandi: recording a track, offering it on the Web and eventually piecing an album together as a "matter of formality."
. . . "I think the institution of the album may be going away. That's my gut feeling. I feel that it is more about songs and the album is a formality that packages things so that you can hype them real big and I'm just not very hype-able. We've tried that a couple of times and it is just not very effective."
The first EP, "Speed Graphic," which includes includes a cover of the Cure's "In Between Days," is due July 22, followed by the currently titled "Sunny 16" in September (featuring a cover of either the Divine Comedy's "Songs of Love" or Devo's "Through Being Cool,") and the third, untitled, installment should arrive in November.
In the meantime, Folds is readying to produce an album by William Shatner (one can only hope this turns out as classic as his 60s album of cover) and is touring with Tori Amos, a pairing that boggles my mind, on the "Lottapianos Tour."
You know, there's always more fun around the corner at unproductivity.