Johnny Marr Blasts Spotify As The 'Opposite To Punk Rock'

Jon Shard

Johnny Marr isn’t a fan of Spotify. The British guitar great has slammed the streaming service by suggesting it hinders the artist community.

“I'm not a supporter,” the former Smiths guitarist tells the NME. “I think it entirely hampers new bands, and the situation that Thom Yorke and Beck have been criticizing makes the old record companies of the '70s look like cottage industries. I can't think of anything more opposite to punk rock than Spotify."

Marr joins a cadre of artists -- including Thom Yorke, Beck, David Byrne and producer Nigel Godrich -- who have spoken out against Spotify.

"I have no answer to the economic side of the modern music industry, but I do think we certainly shouldn't stop valuing what bands do,” he continues. “I don't like great things being throwaway. Pop culture isn't just about 'the music, man'. It's a way of life, an aesthetic, and it's not just about pressing a button and getting something entirely for convenience."

The streaming music model is proving a polarising beast within the music biz. Though not all artists are taking the “against” stance. Eurythmics co-founder Dave Stewart has said Spotify had “come along with a solution,” while Billy Bragg wrote on his Facebook page, “I've long felt that artists railing against Spotify is about as helpful to their cause as campaigning against the Sony Walkman would have been in the early '80s.”

At the recent ARIA Masterclass in Sydney, IFPI CEO Frances Moore told delegates that the concerns from the likes of Yorke and Byrne were “overstated.” She noted, “the evidence is starting to build up which suggests that, over a period of time, income from streaming services can surpass that from download stores.”