Details Of Arcade Fire’s 8 Different Album Covers and “The Suburbs” Deluxe Edition

Arcade Fire – The Suburbs (yes, I realize there are 9 covers here)
Arcade Fire - The Suburbs

Montreal’s Arcade Fire grace the cover of this week’s Billboard mag (July 10, 2010), and while the feature article doesn’t make any startling revelations about the band, it does outline the details of The Suburbs‘ multiple album covers.

The album will once again come out in North America through Merge, which has an album-by-album licensing deal with the band that gives the group a 50/50 profit share. The album will be released with eight different covers (which will be distributed randomly and not to specific retailers; none will have bonus tracks), with a deluxe version for sale only through the band’s website. []

Aside from learning about the generous split with the band, (a lot more generous than when Funeral was distributed via Touch & Go), it was also interesting to learn that Merge now has an “album-by-album licensing deal” with Arcade Fire. According to Our Noise: The Story of Merge Records, the band’s initial deal with Merge was for two albums, which lead people like me to speculate that their third record might come out on another label. The Suburbs, of course, is coming out on Merge, but based on the wording in that article, it looks like the band has left its options pretty wide open for any subsequent releases.

Mac McCaughan: …We had a contract for two records, but when it comes down to it, if they wanted to get out of that second record, or if someone at a major wanted to make it happen, they could figure out a way to do it. So it was a relief when it became clear that they were just taking in the whole scene, and not shopping themselves around. [Our Noise]