Four Tet‘s ongoing legal battle against his former record label, Domino Recording Company, has grown even more contentious after the British imprint recently took down three of the veteran producer’s albums from streaming platforms. Born Kieran Hebden, Four Tet originally signed with Domino in February of 2001, nearly a decade before the emergence of digital streaming. Without as high a cost to record labels for digital versus physical music distribution, Four Tet filed a legal suit against Domino earlier this year to fight for an amended royalty payout structure. The renowned artist suggested that he be entitled to a 50% streaming rate, rather than Domino’s pre-streaming 18% rate, and claimed legal damages amounting up to $95,000.
On November 21, Four Tet tweeted about Domino’s unsolicited takedown of three of his albums. Part of Domino’s initial defense suggested that their former signee had remained complacent with the company’s royalty accounting “for almost two decades.” According to Four Tet, the recent albums takedown was an attempt by Domino to, “remove my music from all digital services in order to stop the case progressing. I did not agree to them taking this action and I’m truly shocked that it has come to this.”
Since then, Domino has issued a statement ahead of their impending court date. According to the label,
“Domino are just as saddened about this current situation. The decision to temporarily remove the three Four Tet albums from digital services was not taken lightly. We were advised to do so as a necessary consequence of Kieran’s litigation at this time.
Kieran began his claim about contractual provisions in his original 2001 agreement with Domino, on 1st December 2020. Since then, we have offered both in correspondence and in open court to mediate, but have been rebuffed by Kieran and his legal team. We have continued trying to re-engage with them to find a solution to this dispute: one that is fair to both sides, but to no avail. Through all of this, we have been and continue to be open to discussion and mediation.
While we are equally as disheartened to have to take these steps, we remain hopeful that an amicable solution can be reached in the future. Our door is now and will always be open for further discussion with Kieran.”
Featured image: Burak Cingi
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