Universal Music Launches DRM-Free Music Site in UK

Universal Music has launched Lost Tunes, its own digital music service offering rare music, DRM-free at near lossless audio quality.

The choice of name could be considered a thumb to the nose against Apple's iTunes service, which (presumably) would like to offer the tracks Universal's making available through its new service as DRM-free downloads.

Universal describes the service as a "groundbreaking online download store dedicated to exclusives, rarities and overlooked classics". Azi Eftekhari, Head of Digital and Media for Universal Music Catalogue commented: "We wanted Lost Tunes to replicate the experience of going to a favorite local record shop where browsing and discovering music is a real pleasure and an adventure. We only include music that we love."

The service has launched with 134 albums which are available exclusively through Lost Tunes.

The initial batch of digital-download exclusives include The Walker Brothers' 'Live In Japan', three albums by the hugely acclaimed Comsat Angels, Bill Fay's eponymous album, UK blues Nine Below Zero, Mellow Candle and Oriental Sunshine to name but a few.

All downloads are sold as high-quality 320kpbs MP3s, meaning the tracks will work on Macs, PCs, iPods, MP3 players and many mobile phones.

Lost Tunes is powered by iTunes competitor, UK firm, 7Digital. International versions of the site will launch in the coming months.

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