Linn Records partners with Universal

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Universal Music signs agreement with the label to release Studio Master recordings as downloads

Music label Linn Records has just announced a partnership with Universal Music to make their huge back catalogue of Studio Master recordings available as downloads.

Studio Master audio files are sourced straight from studio master recordings, as opposed to degraded CD-quality audio files, which have to be compressed to be made available for download.

Some of the albums that are now available in this format include Georg Solti’s recording of Mahler’s Eighth Symphony, Sir Neville Marriner’s recording of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and Lorin Maazel conducting Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite. There are also jazz records by the likes of Duke Ellington, Charles Mingus and John Coltrane available in Studio Master quality.

Universal Music, which owns the labels Deutsche Grammophon and Decca, will be the first major classical record label in the UK to distribute their albums in Studio Master quality.

This move has emerged from an increasing demand for better quality downloads over the last few years. Since the launch of its Studio Master download site in 2007, Linn Records has seen an increasing preference for Studio Master quality albums. Today, more than 90% of the downloads bought from Linn Records are Studio Master quality.

Managing director of Linn Records, Gilad Tiefenbrun, said: ‘We welcome the move from Universal Music to partner with us in releasing their catalogue as Studio Masters which appeal to aficianados who are tired of lesser quality downloads, and this move marks a pivotal moment in the history of recorded music.’

Laura Parkin