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IS RADIO FEELING DISTURBED?

The gothic version of “The Sound of Silence” by Reprise/Warner Bros.Disturbed is unquestionably a smash. The rockers’ Simon & Garfunkel cover has sold over 300k, as has the album it appears on, Immortalized (which streeted in August).

“Silence,” currently #30 at iTunes, is having a loud run at radio, having hit #1 at Active Rock and charting now at Alternative as the radio plan develops. The official video has racked up about 24.5m views. Howard Stern goosed the story still further by playing it on his show on Friday; the band will perform it on Conan on 3/28. A major announcement, meanwhile, is expected in April.

This obvious smash is far outselling its exposure level. Peter Gray and team have proven their ability to consistently move the marketplace. If they can do it once again and solve this puzzle, we could be looking a million-selling album that will feature prominently in the Bunny’s bottom line.

The question is this: Will radio cave and play a proven hit record—driven by real consumer interest—by an act that potentially scares them? Can programmers overcome the blandness of the status quo to embrace something that’s clearly eliciting real passion? We predict this “Sound” will become impossible to ignore.

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