Pleads with fans not to download album illegally.

Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea has taken to the band's Web site to plead with fans not to download the group's upcoming album from file-sharing sites. Due May 9 via Warner Bros., "Stadium Arcadium" was leaked online in recent days, much to the chagrin of the band.

"If you download it now ... you will be getting a pale imitation of the record," Flea writes. "If will be of the poor sound quality of the technique they used to get it on there and that will break my heart. We worked for a year and a half to make the epic record of our lives."

Promotional copies of the double-CD "Stadium Arcadium" were mailed to journalists with the made-up band name Ryan's Song to deter potential theft. "We spent day and night for a year making sure every little sound was just right —that they were all put together in the most beautiful way we could," Flea says. "We did not leave a stone unturned in doing that work. I can not put in words how much this record, 'Stadium Arcadium,' means to us."

"Yes, it is stealing from us, and that is lame," he continues. "Everyone has to live with their own conscience on that one. Let it be your guide."

As previously reported, the Peppers are touring in Europe for the first portion of the summer and will begin a North American tour Aug. 11 in Portland, Ore.