They’ve been described as a female Polyphonic Spree, a screechy impression of Sioxsie and the Banshees, and a French and Saunders sketch gone wrong, yet little-known British chick-choir Gaggle believe their music is worth much more than any of these descriptions presume.
According to NME, the 22-piece all female choir have today released their new single “The Power Of Money” with the symbolically inflated price tag of £3,000 (approx. $AU 4,600 ).
Claiming it covers the cost of the many hours it took to write, arrange, and compose the song, as well as the “love” put into it, Gaggle believes the ridiculous asking price is the only true representation of the piece’s “worth.”
Although a sophisticated little track, it’s not unlike something you’d hear from Aussie band Architecture In Helsinki or Medieval Babes. However, it may just be that extra ingredient of love that justifies the three minute track being more than a hundred times the price of the album it’s taken from, Gaggle’s debut The Mouth Of The Cave, released back in June on iTunes for a regular $16.99.
In a statement issued by the alternative choir, the justify its symbolically increased price tag by asking: “What does money mean to you? How do you put a value on the things you care about? Is money the same thing as worth? This song is precious. And yet, we’re told that, nowadays, ‘a song’ is almost valueless. And that pisses us off. So we have done a budget of how much this single ‘cost’.”
The 22-strong group consists of teachers, doctors, and research scientists who all use pseudonyms to quite possibly hide their colourful work from their more conservative employers. Described as a ‘choir with attitude’, they’ve received some mixed reviews for their pricey new single, with some heralding their sound as strangely creative, and others feeling trampled under the wheels of their alienating style.“We’re told that, nowadays, ‘a song’ is almost valueless. And that pisses us off. So we have done a budget of how much this single ‘cost’.” – Gaggle
A review on The Guardian, who recently named ‘The Power Of Money’ their Single of the Week, says they’re “unlike anything you’ve ever seen or heard unless you mainline LSD and read The Female Eunuch from morning til night.”
While it’s unlikely many will choose to purchase the overpriced single, Gaggle’s protest will surely garner them more attention as people “try before they buy” by watching the single’s music video on YouTube or simply downloading the album.
It’s a tactic similar to that of Melbourne metal veterans Blood Duster, who demonstrated their disgust for the modern marketing and sales process with the release (or lack there of) of an EP back in October.
The band rendered their vinyl release unlistenable by scratching into the grooves of each copy, a symbolic gesture against illegal downloading by then destroying the masters of the record.
Their loathing for the undervaluing of new music by consumers is felt in a statement released by the band saying, “there really is no way for a band to recoup the costs of selling that record to their fans. So why bother?”
With the masters destroyed no one will ever hear the (apparently) completed EP, however along with the scratched vinyl’s release was a five track digital compilation entitled SVCK .
While both protests carry an integral message, Gaggle’s release will no doubt garner the group more publicity than it otherwise would have.
For those with deep pockets, Gaggle’s single “Power Of Money” is available for downloadable purchase here.