NAPSTER LET IT OUT

nme.com's investigation reveals that the site offers a plethora of collector's items for fans of the band...

Napster are likely to make another enemy in Oasis with nme.com‘s discovery that an entire album of demos of the band’s current album ‘STANDING ON THE SHOULDER OF GIANTS’ and versions of much of RADIOHEAD‘s forthcoming LP can be found by users of the controversial file-sharing system.

One Napster user who contacted nme.com told how they had found demos for every track from the band’s last album even before the official release was in shops in February this year.

Skilled Napster users can quickly find such collectors’ items on the site by searching for the song title, plus “demo”, instead of simply looking for the artist’s name. Anyone who locates one demo can usually scan the relevant user’s hard drive by using the software’s “hotlist” feature, and many Napster traders have demos of the entire record. It can take as little as three minutes to locate the files for demos of the entire album.

nme.com‘s source found the whole of ‘Standing On The Shoulder Of Giants’ in demo form, as well as demos of b-side ‘(As Long As They’ve Got) Cigarettes In Hell’ and unreleased tracks ‘Getting Older’, ‘It’s A Crime’, ‘Solve My Mystery’ and ‘Carry Us All’. All the demos are sung by Noel Gallagher, apart from Liam‘s sole songwriting credit, ‘Little James’.

The origin of the demo recordings is unclear, but nme.com has learned that a CD containing all the above demos, sequenced in an identical order to the real album, with the unreleased material at the end, has been on sale in London‘s Camden Town market for some weeks. The CD, titled ‘Don’t Let It Out’, has already led to a caution for at least one Camden market trader, but the CD is still on sale. During a gig in Toronto during the band’s last visit to North America, Noel allegedly told fans he had just bought a copy of ‘Don’t Let It Out’ in Canada.

Other Oasis demos are being traded on Napster‘s online community, including several tracks from ‘(What’s The Story) Morning Glory’ and ‘Be Here Now’, as well as some early material recorded before the band’s debut album, ‘Definitely Maybe’. Live and demo versions of around half of the forthcoming Radiohead album are also available on Napster.

Oasis are bound to be furious about this revelation – their record company Sony have previously threatened fan websites with legal action unless they take down any artwork, soundfiles or band photos posted without their permission.