Image by PJ R (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Around the time of their 1985 debut album ’Psychocandy’ The Jesus and Mary Chain were famous for fighting – with the audience and with each other. Now, in 2021, they’re in a battle with Warner Music Group over the rights to that album.

Jim and William Reid from the band are suing WMG for copyright infringement and declaratory relief, claiming that the label has refused to terminate its copyright ownership of ‘Psychocandy’ after they filed a notice of termination.

Pitchfork has some of the legal back-and-forth that has already gone on before the lawsuit, including the claim by an attorney for WMG label Rhino that the band “never owned any copyrights in the recordings which you could terminate”.

The Reids’ attorney Evan Cohen, who has represented other artists in similar battles, said in a statement that “the legal issues in this suit are of paramount importance to the music industry”. He’s certainly not wrong.

Image by PJ R (CC BY-NC 2.0)

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Stuart Dredge

Music Ally's Head of Insight

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