Universal Music France is quietly testing the sale of DRM-free digital music with "L'Olympia," the first live album of French singer/composer Emilie Simon.
The album was issued digitally on Feb. 28 and at physical retail on March 5 through Universal France's Barclay imprint.
Universal Music France, Middle East and Mediterranean-South America president Pascal Negre confirmed the initiative. Speaking today in Paris following the unveiling of UMG parent Vivendi's financial figures, Negre told Billboard.biz: "We are making some micro tests. This doesn't change our overall policy on DRM."
The album is available both in MP3 and WMA formats for €9.99 on Emilie Simon's Web site . Negre says it has generated "a few dozen sales."
The sale, however, is not advertised on Simon's Web site and is not available elsewhere, with other French online retailers selling the album with DRM.
The digital version of "L'Olympia" includes 19 titles recorded at Paris Olympia on Sept. 19, 2006 with two bonus tracks.
To date, Simon has also released two studio albums plus the soundtrack of Luc Jacquet's Oscar-winning documentary "The March of the Penguins," for which he won an award at French Victoires de la musique in March 2006. The U.S. version of the documentary did not include Simon's work.