‘SPRING BREAK!

The punksters give in because they want to avoid a costly legal battle with their record company...

THE OFFSPRING have bowed to pressure from their record label Sony in the US not to release their new album ‘CONSPIRACY OF ONE’, as a free download on the Internet.

The band’s manager Jim Guerinot told US website [url=]www.sonicnet.com: “We were two seconds away from having a ‘Reservoir Dogs’ ending to this matter. We both had lawsuits ready to drop in New York Friday morning.

“The band and I felt that the bulk of what we were trying to accomplish happens off the single being downloaded, and to sacrifice our fan promotion, album release and tour was just too much.

“It sucks,” he added, “because once people get their hands on the music, fans will have to turn to Napster and other distribution methods to take a listen, but they won’t be able to find the songs at [url=]www.offspring.com. “We will be the only site on the Web that will not have The Offspring‘s new music.”

A free MP3 of their first single to be released from the album, ‘Original Prankster’ will still be available at [url=]www.offspring.com, and they are going ahead with the plan to offer a $1 million prize to their fans.

Sony Music, which owns the band’s label Columbia, planned to seek an injunction against the band and a temporary restraining order. But the band had prepared a breach of contract counter lawsuit. Both sides entered into discussions on Wednesday last week (20 September) and the band finally agreed not to release the album online because, according to Guerinot, the legal battle would have paralysed the band and prevented the $1 million contest going ahead, delayed release of the album and put the brakes on them touring.

The band’s plans to release the album online a month before its November 14 commercial release date had been hailed as one of the bravest moves by an artist in the field of digital downloading yet.