Private Function granted exemption to sell album with scratchie cover in South Australia

The band have been granted a full exemption from the state's Lotteries Act, which would disallow the sale of their scratchable album cash promotion unless they obtained a permit

Private Function have been granted an exemption to sell their scratchable ‘370HSSV 0773H’ album covers in South Australia, following news that the state’s ‘scratch and win’ promotion laws would disallow them from doing so. 

Last week, Private Function outlined the physical release for ‘370HSSV 0773H’, which is set to arrive on March 31. The first 3000 vinyl copies will feature scratchable album covers, which can be removed to reveal Australiana-themed icons. The owner of a copy containing three matching icons will win $2999 from the band, and have their face printed on every future album repress.

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When announcing the release strategy for the album – their third overall and follow up to 2020’s ‘Whose Line Is It Anyway?’ – Private Function lamented South Australia’s Lotteries Act, which dictates that a permit must be obtained for any scratch-based cash promotion, no matter the prize pool value. As a result, ‘370HSSV 0773H’ would be unable to be sold and distributed within the state.

“Your government sucks”, Private Function said to South Australian fans in a press statement at the time. “Hopefully we can come to some kind of deal with your government, otherwise we’ll make sure you receive future pressings.”

In a statement to The Advertiser the following day (February 4) South Australia’s Liquor & Gambling Commissioner Dino Soulio explained how the requirements for scratchie promotions are in place “to ensure consumers are protected.” He went on to reveal, however, that Private Function could receive an exemption from the Lotteries Act. “In this instance I’m sure we can find a practical solution,” Soulio said.

That solution arrived today (February 6), with Private Function announcing that they have been granted a full exemption to conduct an ‘Unlawful Lottery’. “[Private Function are] exempt from Part 2 of the Lotteries Act 2019, for the purpose of promoting, selling or supplying [their] third record ‘370HSSV 0773H’ in South Australia,” the exemption reads.

Celebrating the news in a press statement, Private Function said: “Today is a great day for rock and roll. We thank the South Australian government for working with us and allowing the sales of our new record in your fine state. In an era of political uncertainty, one thing is certain – rock and roll will always prevail.”

In addition to the cash prize, the holder of the winning ‘370HSSV 0773H’ copy will also receive a signed test pressing of the record. The band’s third album has been previewed by the singles ‘I’m This Far Away (From Being the Worst Person You’ve Ever Met)’ and ‘Seize and Destroy’.

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In 2017, the cover art for Private Function’s EP ‘Six Smokin’ Songs’ featured an image of Bryan Curtis, the lung cancer victim known from his appearance on Australian cigarette packets. A few years later, in 2020, the band sold limited edition vinyl copies of ‘Whose Line Is It Anyway?’ which contained bags of an unidentified white powder.

“The speed bag idea was my idea,” frontman Chris Penney told NME in 2020. “It was lucky we happen to know Noah, he runs Salty Dog Records and he works at Zenith down the street. So we talked to him and he was like, ‘Yeah, we can do that’.”

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