The band's Australian label BMG post the album on websites after the album is released early there in oder to capitalise on a recent tour...

THE STROKES are heading into a storm over the online availability of forthcoming album ‘IS THIS IT’, weeks ahead of its UK release.

The much anticipated record has been posted on websites in Australia by the band’s Australian label BMG. The album was released there yesterday (July 30) in order to capitalise on a recent tour of the country. However, the online availability may cause some disquiet in other territories where the album remains under a strict embargo. It is not due for release in the UK until September 3.

Geoff Travis, head of Rough Trade Records, to whom The Strokes are signed in the UK, told NME.COM that the album posting “had not been authorised by us. Australia had special dispensation to get the jump on the rest of the world, and there has been an export ban put on it so that floods of records don’t get exported and interfere with everyone else’s release plans.”

However, Travis was largely unconcerned about the net availability. “It’s an interesting loophole when the net people over here can hear it as well,” he said. “I’m not too concerned though. I’m not going to spend the rest of my day trying to chase it down.”

The online streams were due to be removed from the BMG-owned website click2music.com.au on July 29, but remain active on both that site and on www.hmv.com.au.

Fans can listen to ‘Is That It’ here .