Jay Z's new music streaming service, Tidal, is being relaunched today and it seems many of the major players in the music biz are behind it. It all started with his wife Beyoncé. Then friends Kanye West, Rihanna, Nicki Minaj, Madonna, Coldplay, Jack White's Third Man Records, Daft Punk and Arcade Fire joined in. Some showed their support subtly, by changing their Twitter and Instagram profile pictures to a turquoise square. Others — like Kanye, Usher, and Deadmau5 — did a little more and posted about the new service.
Last month, Jay Z purchased Aspiro, the Swedish technology company behind Tidal, for $56 million. In what will likely rival Spotify, Tidal's service works like this: For $19.99 per month, subscribers will have access to lossless high fidelity CD-quality audio and video ($9.99 for standard sound) in conjunction with the major record labels; this includes Taylor Swift's entire catalog, which once lived on Spotify. Much like Dr. Dre's Beats Music streaming service, Tidal offers expert-curated playlists and editorial, but the ultimate focus here is on sound quality. Unlike Spotify, however, there will not be an ad-supported free version. The tides of how we consume music might be changing, but who knows how effective they'll be. Perhaps this new fellow artist support will up the ante. Jay Z will be making an official announcement about the new venture later today, and we'll update this story accordingly. (Pitchfork)