1: Back catalogue costs more than in a music store. E.g. if some one had just discovered Muse through their latest album ‘Black Holes and Revelations’ and decided to get a couple of their previous albums. On the UK iTunes Music Store all the digital albums cost 7.99 GBP. But on HMV.co.uk ‘Showbiz’ and ‘Hullabaloo’ and ‘Origin of Symmetry’ all cost 6.99 GBP including postage, and you’ll find similar prices in store. You might save money on the latest album (8.99 GBP on HMV.co.uk and more in the store) but not on back catalogue. Everyone talks about mining the long tail via digital, but are people really going to do that if they have to pay a premium to do so?
2: Some tracks are worth more than others. For example, on Snow Patrol’s ‘Eyes Open’ album there is a track called “-“ which is just under four minutes of background noise (murmurs of conversations, birds tweeting, a child chattering). Guess what? On iTunes you have to pay exactly the same price for (0.89 GBP) as you would for “You’re All I Have” or any other track on album.