- The Pocket Gods
- 111 total number
- Not Applicable ()
The Pocket Gods (UK) reclaimed the record for the most songs on a digital album with the release of the 111-track 100xmas30 on 2 December 2016. The follow-up to 100x30 (2015) and Shakespeare Verses Streaming (2016), which both contained 100 tracks, 100xmas30 saw the St Albans-based indie outfit continue their crusade against the digital music industry over royalty payments while taking back the record they lost to Swedish band Kapten Hurricane and their misleadingly titled 101-track digital album 100 Rock Songs in September 2016.
Q&A with Pocket Gods frontman Mark Christopher Lee:
Q: Did 100xmas30 come about as a direct response to Kapten Hurricane's album?
A: "Not really. 100x30 has always been a concept idea. I'm trying to establish the 30-second song as a new artform." [Mark cited as his inspiration an article from The Independent that asked, "Is the three-minute pop song over?"]
Q: Why 111 tracks? Why not 102 [to break Kapten Hurricane's record]?
A: "It's a bit of an in-joke via Spinal Tap the film. They have a scene where they have a guitar amp with a volume knob that goes all the way to 11 instead of 10 – 1 louder – so I thought why not make this 1 louder and all the way to 11... erm 111. There was no point in doing just 102 [tracks] to break the record. I wanted to give them [Kapten Hurricane] something to aim for!"
Q: Do you see this as the beginning of a record-breaking rivalry between The Pocket Gods and Kapten Hurricane?
A: "Oh I hope so. Maybe we could be the Blur and Oasis of the 'most songs on an digital album' rivalry. It was great they saw our record and went for it straight away! I admire that."
Q: What's next for The Pocket Gods?
A: "We are writing the new 100xfiles30 album – 100+ songs all 30 seconds long about the paranormal, etc. – and are planning to tour the album worldwide. We also have our own TV show on Sky – Nub TV – every Sunday at 10 p.m., when we play music videos we love and 30-second songs from the 100x30 albums."
Royalty-attacking tracks on 100xmas30 include the single "0.007 License to Kill the Music Business this Christmas" and "It's Christmas (Up Your Spotify Royalty)". The album also features "Even Noel Edmonds Gets Christmas Cards", "Christmas Atmosphere of Huddersfield Town Centre", "Donald and Hillary Under the Mistletoe" and "I Wanna Be Your Christmas Pudding".
Speaking about their previous record-breaking album 100x30, Lee said: "[The album's] a statement against music streaming giants such as Spotify who pay out a paltry royalty of 0.007p per stream for any track over 30 seconds. So why waste time and money writing longer songs? Why not adapt to the modern-day media and write songs that are indeed 30 seconds long?"
Like 100x30 and Shakespeare Verses Streaming, 100xmas30 is credited to The Pocket Gods & Friends. Contributors on 100xmas30 include 1980s pop star Owen Paul – who had a UK No.3 hit in 1986 with "My Favourite Waste of Time" – on album-opener "A Streaming Christmas", The Trailer Trash Orchestra, Murray Webster and The Kingspond Shantymen.
On 17 March 2016 at London's Underbelly, The Pocket Gods performed what was believed to be the world's first gig comprising of just 30-second songs. The event was streamed live around the world.
The Pocket Gods are fronted by Mark Christopher Lee, with keyboard player Noel Storey also a permanent and founder member of the band. They were discovered by the late radio DJ John Peel and have released 75 albums in their 19-year history.