Muse made history with their ninth LP Will Of The People, marking the first UK number 1 album to feature NFT technology.
The limited edition “digital pressing” was produced in collaboration with Warner Music UK and Serenade, an eco-friendly web3 music marketplace.
It is the first full-length disc containing NFT (non-fungible token) items to reach the top spot, and the first new format to be added to the official album chart since it began counting streaming data in 2015. .
A fairly recent craze from the cryptocurrency world, NFTs are unique digital assets that exist on a blockchain and cannot be replicated.
For clarity, if something is fungible, it is interchangeable with another good or asset – non-fungible means it is not.
Last year, digital artwork sold for over $69m (£50m) at Christie’s, marking the first-ever sale by a major auction house of a work of art that did not exist in physical form.
Muse’s NFT album was limited to 1,000 copies worldwide and, with different cover art, came with a downloadable version of the disc as high-resolution FLAC files that the band had digitally signed.
Each of the 1,000 buyers also had their name permanently listed on the linked buyer list.
After NFT Albums were made eligible for the charts several months ago, Martin Talbot, Managing Director of the Official Charts Company, called them an “exciting new format” and said he thought they would play a role in the charts for years to come.
With Aitch’s Close To Home becoming the first NFT project to enter the Official UK Albums Chart last week, he seems to have it right.
It’s a double whammy for Muse – the Devon three-man band featuring lead singer Matt Bellamybassist Chris Wolstenholme and drummer Dominic Howard – who also mark their seventh UK number one album with the record.
Will Of The People outsold the rest of the combined Top 10, racking up an impressive 51,500 chart units in its opening week.
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Muse can now be counted among other bands, The Killers and The Prodigy, who also have seven chart-topping albums each.
Bellamy has already released three new songs as NFT, one of which was recorded on one of the late American musician Jeff Buckley’s guitars.
Muse will be touring the UK next summer.
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