TORONTO, Canada (AP) — Clad in red and shouting slogans in a melodic slurry of angst-ridden English and French, several dozen sign-wielding protestors gathered outside Justice Records offices in downtown Toronto early Tuesday morning to express their vehement disapproval of the label’s decision to delay the Canadian release of “The Century of Self”.
Demonstrators are at odds with the independent label’s decision to postpone the distribution of indie-scene favorite …And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead’s newest release “The Century of Self” north of the border. The album’s Canadian release date has been summarily pushed back to March 3rd, two weeks later than the release date in the United States, over what the label is calling “practical and uncompromising logistical concerns”. Local music store owner Becky Princeton, who joined the demonstration later in the afternoon, said she was dismayed by how many potential customers she had to turn away because the album had not yet been released. “I had people streaming into my store this morning hoping to buy the new Trail of Dead album. I had to turn them all away,” Princeton lamented. “It’s frustrating because I’m losing business. I’ve never heard of this little label before, but clearly they haven’t had much experience dealing with Canadians. We don’t like being pushed to the back burner and we don’t take being slighted with album releases very lightly.”
Justice Records spokesman Phil Lyman said the fans had every reason to be upset with the delay, insisting the label did everything in its power to get the record out on time. “Everyone here [at the label] tried to make this happen in tune with the United States. Ideally we wanted to have a uniform release date throughout North America, but a few things happened and a few wrenches were thrown into the spokes.” Lyman deflected criticism away from the label’s distribution partner Universal, revealing the delay had nothing to do with business and all to do with bureaucracy. “Times have changed. Security is tight. Once in a while you just can’t predict how long it will take to get merchandise through Canadian customs.”
Law enforcement agencies are set to remain on alert after protest leaders threatened further demonstrations at upcoming Trail of Dead shows in Montreal and Toronto early next month.