Acquisition Ex-Machina

Acquisition Ex-Machina

Acquisition Ex-Machina

By / Features / Wednesday, 30 September 2015 09:41

Weeks ago, indie Hard Rock and Metal label Century Media (Devin Townsend, In This Moment, Arch Enemy) had become the latest acquisition of major recording label, Sony BMG.

Nearly 90% of the music you hear somehow has ties to the big three labels Sony, Warner Music Group, and Universal/EMI.

When one of the three makes a major move to carve out a larger slice of the pie, the others are quick to grab knives and follow suite. According to an article posted on, Century Media was Sony’s consolation prize and oh what a prize indeed. With Sony snatching Century Media up the music group solidified a delicious 33.6% share of the album market. …now that’s a lesson on buying your cake and eating it too.

Undoubtedly news of the deal stoked the rebellious anti-corporate flame of every rambunctious and angst-ridden metalhead to survive a mosh pit, but such fears are merited, right? Billboard reported that while “Sony paid about $20 million for the company”, Century retained its publishing assets and founder Robert Kampf would stay on and head Sony’s new subsidiary.

century media russel miller2While all of this looks to be a positive set of revelations, it is also a playbook maneuver that has been seen before by many. Years ago Roadrunner Records (Slipknot, NicklebackOpeth) found itself in a similar situation. The label soon saw their head honcho Cees Wessels step down, their international offices shut down and various other execs were either pushed out or left by themselves. This barrage of layoffs left Roadrunner a shell off what it was when it rose to stardom in the 90‘s and provides insight into Century’s future and the future of other labels that may meet a similar fate.

An insatiable appetite for profit that has been eating away the music industry for decades on end, takes yet another bite out of the indie pie. Century Media and its subsidiaries reportedly generate around 10 to 12 million dollars in revenue and have built up a devoted hard rock and extreme metal following. Whether or not Century goes the Roadrunner route is as up in the air as it is feared to certainly happen. One thing is certain, however, there is still some juice to squeeze out of the lemon that the industry has become.



Russell Miller

Russell Miller

Russell Miller is the front-of-house/monitor engineer for Red Gate Sound & contributes reviews and an occasional snarky op-ed here at UNDERGROUND PRESS. If the music has a strong melody, a drive, or ambition chances are that it’ll have my attention. Knowledge. Follow Russell on Twitter and InstagramCheck out his tunes at SoundCloud

 RED GATE SOUND: Our Facebook | Writer/Contributor: Underground Press | Engineer/Producer: Arkayem Productions

Please publish modules in offcanvas position.

We use cookies on our website. Some of them are essential for the operation of the site, while others help us to improve this site and the user experience (tracking cookies). You can decide for yourself whether you want to allow cookies or not. Please note that if you reject them, you may not be able to use all the functionalities of the site.