Following Trent Reznor’s recent rants on Radiohead’s ‘Pay-What- You-Want’ method of releasing music (In Rainbows promotion was insencere), it’s Smashing Pumpkins’ Billy Corgan’s turn.
In an interview with Rolling Stone Corgan says that Radiohead were in it for the publicity when they released ‘In Rainbows’ on the internet last Fall: “I think it’s really difficult for the young artist, who doesn’t have at least some sense of a pathway. For example, if you were a kid today and you’re looking at the bands who are successful right now, you think, if you don’t sort of sell out and let somebody make you a star, go on American Idol, then you can’t be successful. Alternative culture is really critical towards introducing new ideas. We need those young bands to push old band like us, to push new boundaries. We need our butts kicked regularly. That’s where all the energy comes from, from the bottom. And when the message on Amy Winehouse is drama is better than music, and for Radiohead publicity is better than music — no disrespect to them. But I think it’s a bad message to young bands of how to make it happen. It’s almost like the evil stepchild of the rap bling-bling thing, like, the only way to make it work is I’ve got to come up with a gimmick.”
In the meantime, Corgan will be releasing new Smashing Pumpkins material the uncoventional way as well: “I can tell that our plans right now are to do an album over two or three years and put it out in pieces and then maybe eventually bring it all back together. The album doesn’t have to be perfect. It doesn’t have to be ten songs. Some dumb white guy somewhere doesn’t have to like it. Some old fart, out-of-touch has to decide, oh, these ten songs aren’t as good as Sgt. Pepper’s. Well, you know what? I don’t think the Beatles would be making an album right now.”