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Merge's Ballance weighs in

A MATTER OF BALLANCE: Merge co-founder Laura Ballance (who, like co-founder Matt McCaughan, is also a member of label flagship band Superchunk), has a number of intriguing things to say in Todd Martens’ Pop & Hiss feature. For example, she says "The whole chart thing is kind of like sports. The need to have a ranking is kind of meaningless. I’m more like, ‘It did good? That’s great.’" Regarding the unhyped, link-rich interactive digital picture book that accompanies downloads of The Suburbs, in which artwork and lyrics are synchronized to each song, Ballance points out, "Nobody knew about it. The band are fans of doing things under the radar and letting people discover it. We did not promote it as a feature. I think it’s cool. It’s even awesome for a little karaoke." As for Amazon's decision to price the LP at $3.99 last week, she notes, “Unfortunately, that’s not up to us. Yet it certainly raises concerns about the value of the album, and what consumers will view as a reasonable price.” (8/12a)

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