MP3tunes has launched. It's the new DRM-free music downloading site by Michael Robertson, formerly of The site is painfully slow under the load right now so enter at your own risk. Songs are 88 cents, albums are $8.88, which are both lower than iTunes. The about page says artists get almost 60 cents a song and almost $6 an album. (Then subtract the digital distributor's cut before it gets to the artist, which can range tremendously.)

My album I Don't Know What I'm Doing is in there here. I have kind of a morbid fascination with what genres music services jam me in. MP3tunes puts me in Pop / Quirky, which seems as good a place for me as any.

Since the site's swamped I haven't gotten to look around much, but dudes, what is up with the heavy truncation on artist names and album titles? On the front page I see "Theme Fr..." by "Elias K...", "Figures...." by "Two Ton...", Serenade..." by "Rachell...", Capricor..." by Mark Ha...". When not a single artist on the front page can fit their full name or album title, it's time to shrink the font or widen the screen or something so visitors can read what the hell they're supposed to click on and buy. And mouseovers on the truncated titles would be nice.

It'll be interesting to see if MP3tunes catches on with the anti-DRM set. Will they accept it as a good way to get media in a format that's useful to them or call "too expensive" on it and keep downloading music for free? Guess we'll see.

business, musicBrad Turcotte