The man who leaked nine tracks from Guns ‘N Roses’ top-secret new album Chinese Democracy got a visit from the Feds today. We still can’t believe the lengths GNR is going to to keep these tracks under wraps…
Rollingstone.com: Last week, the Internet was rocked when California blogger Kevin Skwerl posted nine newly leaked Chinese Democracy tracks, including three previously unheard songs allegedly from Guns n’ Roses long-awaited album. Skwerl — who used to work in the distribution department of Universal Music and is now a Web designer — runs the blog Antiquiet, and says he received the tracks from “an anonymous online source.” [Hmmm…Skwerl used to work for Universal, the same label GNR was on…]
Yesterday Skwerl was surprised to find himself face to face with two FBI agents who paid a visit to his day job. “It was kind of an ambush,” Skwerl tells Rolling Stone. “When I came back from lunch they were waiting in the lobby for me. It’s a little creepy they know where I work.” Two young FBI officers, who Skwerl describes as “Mulder and Scully types,” questioned him for 15 minutes about where he got the tracks and made plans to visit his house at 7:00 a.m. this morning.
“I wasn’t sure if they were going to come by with a warrant and trash the place, like in the movies,” he says. “It was nothing like that.” The FBI officials wanted to see the original files, but Skwerl erased them last week per instructions from Axl Rose’s attorneys. Skwerl ultimately gave them second-hand files that are now widely available on the Internet.
As we noted last week, GNR should be leaking the tracks themselves. Seriously. People have been waiting for Chinese Democracy for 14 years, and streaming cuts would be a good way to build buzz and indicate that it’s really almost done. That’s the way it works now–ask Lil Wayne.
What’s more, we’ve never heard of anyone siccing the Feds on someone who posted copyright-protected files. Even Lars Ulrich never sent the FBI to Napster. The fact that GNR’s going to this much trouble over tracks that weren’t even available for download and that Skwerl deleted as soon as some random middleman in the GNR camp nicely asked him to do is baffling. It’s also disturbing that two FBI agents took the time to do this. Don’t they have more pressing matters to look into?
Photo by dave1968 from Flickr
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