Metric: A Canadian Digital Music Success Story

The LA Times runs a great story on Metric, a Canadian band that is enjoying commercial success without a major record label.  The story points to the band's digital-first strategy – it offers various versions of their latest CD (ie. limited edition deluxe packages, etc.), streamed the entire album a month before release, allowed fans to embed the album on their websites, and distributed the music digitally via iTunes.  The band's co-manager notes that allowing free streamed versions of the album before its release actually increased demand. 

Less than one month after its commercial release, the band says that it has made more money than it did under a previous record label deal.  It is also worth noting that Metric was a beneficiary of FACTOR, which helped cover its recording costs.  This story points to how the government can assist Canadian musicians by continuing cultural funding support, while ignoring the claims that it is copyright law that stands in the way of commercial success.


  1. What’s FACTOR?
    Might be worth a link to explain what it was that was of such benefit. Probably obvious to some readers, but I don’t have a clue.

  2. United Hackers Association says:

    excepte form factors site, sounds liek the way NON PROFIT to HELP
    FACTOR, The Foundation Assisting Canadian Talent on Recordings, was founded in 1982 by CHUM Limited, Moffat Communications and Rogers Broadcasting Limited, in conjunction with the Canadian Independent Record Producers Association (CIRPA) and the Canadian Music Publishers Association (CMPA). Standard Broadcasting merged its Canadian Talent Library (CTL) development fund with FACTOR’s in 1985.

    As a private non-profit organization, FACTOR is dedicated to providing assistance toward the growth and development of the Canadian independent recording industry. The foundation administers the voluntary contributions from sponsoring radio broadcasters as well as two components of the Department of Canadian Heritage’s Canada Music Fund to support the Canadian music industry. FACTOR has been managing federal funds since the inception of the Sound Recording Development Program in 1986 (now known as the Canada Music Fund Council).

  3. No surprise here. Unless you’re the CRIA…
    Bands like Anamanaguchi, The Same Sky, Botfly, Ptarmigan, Society’s Plague, The Flashbulb (I could go on for quite a while here…), even Nine Inch Nails & Radiohead have been benefiting from similar scenarios. This is the beginning of the future, and all these copyright battles being waged by the likes of the CRIA & friends are simply the struggles of an industry in its death throes.

  4. Good point Maebnoom, but…
    Unfortunately, dinosaurs like the CRIA have the federal government in their pocket.
    They will simply have the Inde’s legislated out of existance.

  5. New business model not FACTOR behind Metric’s success
    Wow! Imagine that: devising a new business model as a means to success. Metric is to be commended for both their marketing strategy and their music. They are a good band, so I don’t think FACTOR was an essential element in their success.

  6. Not trying to spam – comment lost
    Are you trying to spam? Please allow ’30’ seconds between posts

    Great. This blog just ate my comment. Thanks. I’m not going to rewrite it.

  7. Good. My comment did show up. Patience is not one of my strong points 😉

  8. Emily says says:

    money, money, money
    Metric has received over $370,000 in FACTOR funding since 2005. If that money wasn’t an essential element in their success, then, better to spread it around. That’s enough money to give a hand up to dozens more musicians.

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