'I care about the future of music, I care not for the current business structure,' Allen says
The subscription service was launched by an all-star cast in New York last week (March 30) with Kanye West, Madonna, Beyoncé, Rihanna, Arcade Fire, Jack White, J Cole, Nicki Minaj, Deadmau5, Daft Punk and Alicia Keys all attending the live-streamed event.
“I love Jay Z so much, but TIDAL is [so] expensive compared to other perfectly good streaming services,” Allen wrote on Twitter. “He’s taken the biggest artists & made them exclusive to TIDAL… people are going to swarm back to pirate sites in droves sending traffic to torrent sites.”
Allen continued: “Up and coming artists are going to suffer as a result. Maybe I’m missing something, and really it’s amazing and will change everything for the better.”
The singer later added that Spotify, Tidal’s main competitor, “is not the enemy of the artist”, before stating: “I don’t think music should be free, at all. But I’m afraid that we have to adapt as the world and technology advances… I care about the future of music, I care not for the current business structure.”
The Project Panther Bidco company, co-owned by Jay Z, acquired Tidal from its Norwegian parent company Aspiro for 464 million kroner (about £47 million). Tidal Hifi already offers more than 25 million songs and 75,000 music videos to more than half a million subscribers in Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany and Poland.
Tidal launched with a number of exclusive releases for its initial subscribers. Video figures highly among the exclusives with The White Stripes’ first-ever television appearance and Daft Punk’s 2006 film Electroma both available. Additionally there are playlists curated by Arcade Fire, Jay Z, Beyoncé and Coldplay.
Jay Z has said that Tidal is not a direct rival for Spotify, rather than an attempt to “strike an honest blow” in shaping the future of music.