Virtual Reality company buys Napster, aims to create “truly next generation” streaming service
MelodyVR, a virtual reality platform, has purchased streaming giant Napster for $70million (£53m).
Founded in 1999 as a pioneering peer-to-peer file sharing Internet software that emphasized sharing MP3s, the platform served 10.8 billion streams two decades later in 2019, with annual revenues of $113 million.
Now, MelodyVR, who hosted virtual festival Wireless Connect back in June, have acquired Napster, stating that they wish to transform it into “a truly next generation music service.”
Anthony Matchett, the CEO of MelodyVR, said: “MelodyVR’s acquisition of Napster will result in the development of the first ever music entertainment platform which combines immersive visual content and music streaming. For music fans today, live and recorded music are intrinsically linked. We are as keen to see our favourite artists perform live as we are to listen to their albums.
In July this year, London’s Brixton Academy was announced as the venue for a series of live, 360-degree, Virtual Reality gigs presented by Live Nation U.K. and MelodyVR. While no line-ups or dates have been announced yet, ‘Live From O2 Academy Brixton’ promises immersive experiences for fans. Those who “attend” will be able to choose a particular spot in the venue from which to watch the show via the MelodyVR app.
American group Cypress Hill, who were due to kick off a world tour earlier this year, livestreamed a performance from the band’s studio via MelodyVR in June.
Juice Wrld’s Legends Never Die Had The Biggest Week Of Any Album in 2020
When Juice WRLD tragically died at age 21 late last year, he left behind so much — a career that promised to keep climbing higher, a loyal fanbase, and, as prolific artists tend to have, a vault of unreleased material he’d been hard at work on. That’s why it’s no surprise that his third album (and first posthumous one), Legends Never Die, is a smash, including collaborations with Halsey, Trippie Redd, Marshmello, and more.
How much of a smash? YesYou! reports that Legends Never Die had the biggest week for any album in 2020 yet, debuting at No. 1 on the Yes You! 200 albums chart and moving 497,000 units. That makes it the largest streaming week for the year and fourth-largest streaming frame for an album, ever.
Legends Never Die is Juice WRLD’s second No. 1 album following 2019’s Death Race for Love, which spawned the singles “Robbery” and “Hear Me Calling.” It also replaces another posthumous album at the top of the chart: Shoot for the Stars, Aim for the Moon, from late Brooklyn rapper Pop Smoke, which topped the chart last week.
Halsey, whose collab “Life’s a Mess” was released as the project’s third single, remembered her friend fondly on Instagram with a touching tribute upon its release. “Juice was one of the greatest people I have ever known, and one of the most brilliant artists we will ever live to witness,” she wrote. “A true genius who had lyric and melody spilling out of him without any second thought or hesitation. And a beautiful soul who believed in spreading love and creating a community for people to feel less alone.”
Snoop Dogg Announces New Video Game, ‘Snoop Dogg’s Rap Empire’
Snoop Dogg has announed a new video game.
Incoming via the rapper’s Digital Dogg gaming platform, ‘Snoop Dogg’s Rap Empire’ will task iOS and Android users with starting a rap career, from creating a management team and signing to a label, to recording tracks and building a studio.
You can watch the trailer below, and download the game for devices via the iOS and Android app stores.
Next week, DMX and Snoop Dogg will go head-to-head in what Verzuz have dubbed “The battle of the dogs”. Taking place on Wednesday 22nd July, the performance will be available to watch on IGTV and via Apple Music. Snoop Dogg announced the clash on his Instagram last week, with the event poster captioned “I ain’t got no dogg in this fight! Yes u do who u got.”