‘Fake music’ on streaming services is an ongoing challenge for labels and artist teams to tackle.
That’s the case whether the music is really by a star but uploaded without their permission under a different artist name, or the flipside of that: music by an unknown artist uploaded in a way that makes it appear to be by an establish act – including appearing on their profile and in personalised recommendations for their fans.
The latest example is outlined by Input, with a rogue track on Spotify that appeared to be by the band TV Girl, but wasn’t. “They hadn’t greenlit a new single, and the cover art, a hi-res stock photo of two hands clasping, was a far cry from their usual two-tone, film-grain aesthetic… Instead of the hypnotic bedroom pop the band built its following on, this was generic, sanitised EDM,” it explained.
TV Girl found that 11 other artists had similar tracks with similar artwork uploaded to their profiles on 25 or 25 June, suggesting that this may have been a coordinated scam.
The piece (and TV Girl’s scathing Instagram post about the issue) make it clear there are still questions to answer about how it happened – and most importantly, how to stop it happening again.