SoundCloud has 4 different payment plans free, pro, pro unlimited and premier. The free plan is of no charge to the user but has limits for example you have 3 hours worth of upload time, plenty for a casual up loader that is not looking for a career from their music. The pro plan doubles the upload time to 6 hours, “pro unlimited” gives you unlimited upload time the pro plan also gives you statistical information about your uploads such as who’s listening to them, what country in the world is listening to it and more. whereas the pro unlimited plan gives even more in-depth statistics such as what city listeners are in. these plans are limited to 2GB per upload and 30 hours per week which should be plenty unless you were a huge band uploading your whole back catalogue. The premier plan is currently “invite only” but will allow people on the premier plan to make revenue from their uploads with ads similar to monetising videos on youtube.
as briefly mentioned in a previous blog, SoundCloud has really been struggling these past few years getting by only via funding meaning that they will have to change how their site works this could potentially mean no free option. If it was up to me i would allow there to be free accounts but these free accounts have no upload time, instead they are there to just listen and follow people. SoundCloud have recently come to agreements with a number of music labels to support their streaming services. The labels they have agreements with are Warner Music Group, Universal and Merlin and have very recently made an agreement with Sony Music the reason for these agreements is their recent run in with the PRS, the royalty collection society for recorded music. The PRS stopped their legal procedures when SoundCloud agreed to license their subscription streaming service.
This streaming service is sort of a last port of call for SoundCloud, if they continue to lose money the way they are they are likely to lose the funding they are currently receiving. Here’s hoping that SoundCloud make it through because it is a great place for people to get into making music and a great place for people to share their music without it i think the only other option would be YouTube but as it is not designed for music it would be much harder to find new artists the way that you can on SoundCloud.
Mala the owner of Deep Medi Musik created the label in 2006 in an interview with TransmeetTV hes said that he created the label because he was being sent music from all around the world artists from “UK, Finland, New Zealand and Japan” this is only a few of them. 10 years later Deep Medi has released around 36 different artists and 102 different releases between these artists 91 of them are single or EP (both vinyl) releases and the other 11 are CDs or vinyl LPs. the music being released on this label is known as Dubstep although Mala winces at the word and expresses that this is what the media has labeled it as but for an easier reading experience i will refer to it as Dubstep.
hypercolour is also a label stared in 2006 which focuses around dance music such as “house” Hypercolour have around 116 releases however just under half of these are solely digital releases where as with Deep Medi they are all vinyl (occasionally CD) with a digital option this is largely because of Malas views of how This music should be consumed. When Mala along with Coki, Loefah and Sgt. Pokes start their club night DMZ the moto they put on the flyer was “come meditate on bass weight” this is because Mala believes in sound system music and that the music on his label was designed to be listened to in this way.
Another difference between these two labels is genre Dubstep isn’t currently as popular as house especially the old school style as is released on Deep Medi although in 2006 this style of Dubstep was still thriving and this shows in releases Deep Medi really picked up its releases in 2008 on the other hand Hypercolour didn’t really start releasing on a big level until about 2012. These more niche genres are much more liable to change in trends that will affect popularity but with other genres such as rock which are constantly quite popular are not as susceptible to such trends because it is already a hugely popular established genre.
SoundCloud is site designed for music composers and users, music composers can share their music on the site for free and people that just want to listen can do so without even signing up. SoundCloud has allowed “Users on a Free plan have an upload quota of up to 180 minutes of audio, Pro plan subscribers have a 360 minute quota, and Unlimited plan subscribers do not have an upload limit on their account.” The way I see this is a free plan allows people new to composing and sharing their music to try out the site without any commitment where as the unlimited pro plan is for established artists or labels to use. SoundCloud can be a powerful asset to a label specifically independent labels for example Deep Medi Musik the label I am doing my other case study on uses it post clips of upcoming releases as well as free downloads such as these https://soundcloud.com/deep-medi-musik/sets/a-taste-of-struggle-valentines-day-dload Deep Medi also upload full tracks for their fans to listen to. It recently has emerged that SoundCloud isn’t doing too well financially we will look further into this when we continue with this case study in further blogs.
Deep Medi Musik are an indie dubstep label based in London and ran by dubstep pioneer Mala. Deep Medi started releasing music in 2006 and almost every vinyl release gets sold out in a matter of days, this is most likely because of the following that Mala has gained from his many years in the genre. This year is Deep Medis 10th anniversary and they are having a 10 event tour in america to celebrate. Deep Medi has released legendary artists such as Skream and Goth-Trad which are big names in the genre. Deep Medi is able to run as an indipendant label because of the the dedicated following of their Label which is likely why their releases are always selling out. Deep Medi isn’t the only label that Mala has ran, along with Coki, Loefah and sgt Pokes he co-ran DMZ a legendary label from the origins of dubstep the first release on the label is on Discogs for £140 and many of the release are not even available on discogs which is not very common; this is because they are seen as a collectors item. a lot of Deep Medis income will come from live events, on top of their 10th anniversary tour they are also headlining boom town with a stage takeover. In future blogs we will look further into why Deep Medi Musik has been successful over the years and and further into how they work and what they do.