Fiona Apple finished recording Extraordinary Machine in May of 2003, but Sony/Epic executives did not think it would sell enough copies to justify the cost of promoting and distributing it. Rather than spend more money, Sony/Epic decided to cut their losses and not release the album at this time.
The album has been leaked online in the filesharing networks – it is getting downloaded a lot. Is this a marketing ploy on Sony’s part?
I still think that if the music industry had any balls they would have realized the customer database handed to them on a plate with the original Napster. Ever since then I have no respect for the music industry.
Isn’t this part of the ‘long tail’? It doesn’t matter if they didn’t promote Fiona’s album. Hell, put it out on iTunes and there’s no actual physical product to make. The demand can ebb and flow and there’s no worries for the poor starving underpaid underfluffed executives.