Earlier this year, AI-music startup Endel revealed plans to release AI-generated albums through a distribution deal with Warner Music Group. And it definitely *is* a distribution deal: headlines about Endel becoming the first AI to ‘sign to a label’ were wide of the mark.
Five albums came out earlier this year: ‘Clear Night’, ‘Rainy Night’, ‘Cloudy Afternoon’, ‘Cloudy Night’ and ‘Foggy Morning’ – all with the ‘Sleep’ prefix making it clear what kind of listening they were aimed at. Now there are five more with a different theme: ‘Relax’.
The albums have been released via streaming services as well as through Endel’s own smartphone apps and Alexa skill: ‘Clear Afternoon’, ‘Rainy Afternoon’, ‘Rainy Evening’, ‘Cloudy Morning’ and ‘Foggy Morning’.
Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube are among the streaming services where the albums are already live. More batches are on the way later this year under the banners of ‘Focus’ and ‘On The Go’.
How did those ‘Sleep’ albums do though? Not that well: on Spotify, the streams are still in the thousands for the first batch of albums, while on YouTube the videos originally released in February have tens or hundreds of views for the most part. As an artist on Spotify, Endel has 872 monthly listeners at the time of writing – but of course, these stats don’t include the company’s own apps.