Music used to be a thing we owned, but like video games and movies the power is being taken away from the consumer. As streaming has become the dominant form to listen to music, labels have gained the power to remove an album from our ears at any time - regardless of whether we pay for a subscription.
In recent years, artists which have been historically against the ethics of streaming services have caved in. Taylor Swift and Tool may have been locked in an album battle recently, but they were once against streaming and notably absent. Long-awaited acts such as Peter Gabriel and King Crimson have also been added in recent years. At this point, streaming services are beginning to feel like a comprehensive history of post-1960s popular music.
But there are whole albums by artists we love that aren't on Spotify or Apple Music for whatever reason. These are artists with hours of music you can listen to, but for some reason one collection of tracks has slipped the net...
10. The Flaming Lips – Zaireeka
The eighth studio album by Oklahoma rockers The Flaming Lips, Zaireeka released to little fanfare in 1997. The case holds four separate CDs that are designed when played together to create a full sound. The discs could also be played in different combinations, so really you've got a number of combinations getting into double figures. Trust these guys to come up with a concept so completely out of this world, because only an alien would own four CD players.
Die-hard fans would surely want to hear all of them together for the most complete version of the record - but who owns four devices that play CDs? Especially in 1997.
Currently, only three tracks from this album can be streamed, and perhaps there’s a reason why Wayne Coyne and co. didn’t re-release the rest. Three tracks were re-released during The Soft Bulletin era, but they were unlike how they were originally meant to be listened to on Zaireeka, instead being played on just the one CD with a solitary combination.
To be honest, I'm not even sure how Zaireeka would work on streaming services considering the wild concept it's based on, but maybe one day they'll figure it out.