Electronic music producer and artist Skee Mask (full name Bryan Müller) has officially removed “all” his tracks from Spotify over the platform’s perceived lack of respect for creators, in addition to CEO Daniel Ek’s multimillion-dollar investment in AI-powered defense company Helsing.
The Germany-based “Rev8617” artist announced his voluntary Spotify exit on social media, and the much-publicized move follows Skee Mask’s May of 2021 decision to release Pool physically and digitally sans a streaming option.
“it’s done, all of my sh-t is gone from Spotify,” Skee Mask said of his music’s just-finalized removal from the Stockholm-headquartered service. “i have nothing against streaming in general, it’s one of many good ways to make music even more accessible!
“for me it’s about how much / less the creators behind the music receive in terms of value, respect or space. i’m aware of the fact that almost every (big) streaming company plays the game in a similar way like spotify nowadays, but that’s not the point,” continued the music professional, whose work remains live on YouTube, Apple Music, and other services.
“they don’t seem to use their 100 MILLION € of income to further destroy something that (almost) every musician is fighting for: uniting people. those other companies might just have a very small bit left of that something, but it still has an effect.
“my music will be available there again as soon as this company starts (somehow) becoming honest & respectful towards music makers. if you really don’t have the money to listen to my music in any other way, feel free to digitally steal it anywhere, BUT don’t give you’re [sic] last penny to such a wealthy business that obviously prefers the development of warfare instead of actual progression in the music business. PEACE!” concluded Skee Mask.
Regarding the “100 MILLION €,” “development of warfare,” and “PEACE” components of the statement from Skee Mask, Daniel Ek’s Prima Materia in November provided €100 million (about $113 million at the present exchange rate) in funding to Helsing, “a new type of security and artificial intelligence company.”
At the time of this piece’s publishing, Skee Mask’s tweet had garnered over 60 replies (most of which appear supportive), 550 retweets, and 4,200 likes. And while the lion’s share of the artist’s projects are indeed unavailable on Spotify – where he has over 105,000 monthly listeners – a few Skee Mask tracks are still live on the platform’s U.S. version.
Lastly, for the Spotify takedowns’ details, Dario Zenker – who operates a Munich record label called Ilian Tape with his brother – relayed on social media that the 15-year-old indie operation has delisted its entire catalog from the service as well. (Ilian Tape’s signed acts include Skee Mask, Stenny, and Katatonic Silentio.)
“We took down the whole Ilian Tape catalogue from all artists including the Skee Mask stuff from Spotify. No idea why RA [Resident Advisor] didn’t cover that,” wrote Dario Zenker.
Last month, DMN took a look at why Garth Brooks is absent from Spotify, and stand-up mainstay Lewis Black asked the platform to remove his work amid a wider royalties dispute involving a number of comedians.