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Did KMFDM just self-release “fan-made” music videos?

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This is pretty interesting… yesterday (a Saturday), KMFDM posts a Facebook update that reads “Brand-new KMFDM video here.” The video in question is for “I Heart Not,” a track from their newly-released album, KUNST. On the YouTube page, the video is clearly-labeled “KMFDM – ‘I Heart Not’ Official Video.” It’s even watermarked with the relevant info (artist/label/album/director). Fans on the Facebook page start panning the video, and all-of-a-sudden the public statistics and comments on YouTube are deleted, then turned off. Four hours later, KMFDM posts another Facebook update with another new video along with the following text: “Another brand new KMFDM video, like the one posted earlier it has had no input from us, they were made uncalled for by people that are into our music. Much appreciated !!” Sure it is.

Record labels seed “fan-made” content. I know this for a fact, as twice in the past year I’ve been offered jobs as a “ghost director” to create “fan-made” videos for YouTube. I actually took one just last month – and started on it – but had to bow out due to a scheduling conflict. Yes, some “fan-made” content on YouTube has been commissioned by the artists (or someone in their team) that it claims to pay tribute to.

Why does this KMFDM situation seem suspect? Here’s some bullet points to consider:

  • Both videos – “I Heart Not” and “Quake” were posted on the same day, March 16, 2013.
  • “I Heart Not” is the only video on it’s channel.
  • “Quake” is the second video on it’s channel. The other? Also a KMFDM “fan” video from 2010.
  • The alleged director of “I Heart Not” is Dustin Ferguson… who directed videos for Velvet Acid Christ, a Metropolis Records Artist.
  • KMFDM’s KUNST was just released on Metropolis Records.

The sad reality is that the music industry (especially the rock realms) is a shell of what it used to be. Bands that used to spend tens of thousands of dollars (sometimes more) on videos are now given budgets in the hundreds (I kid you not) of dollars. That’s why lyric videos and cheapies are so prevalent these days. I’m not “calling out” KMFDM (whose music I love) for getting in on the action (since it’s a pretty common practice), but I think it’s silly to put something out as “official,” then back-peddle to say it’s “fan-made.”


On the other hand, maybe it’s all 100% legit?

As I sit here at 1:21am sipping coffee from a Luke Skywalker STAR WARS mug, I long for the days when the music world was more fun…

KUNST is available now on iTunes
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