This fascinating book chronicles the making of the new record industry, from the boom years of the CD revolution of the late 1980s to the crisis of the present day, with particular stress on the last decade.
The CD revolution was a bonanza for the record industry. The new digital medium attracted sales in its own right and existing material could now be re-packaged and resold with huge profit margins.
Sales grew, but then the pirates moved in, exploiting the medium by making perfect copies. When the legitimate paid-for download finally arrived courtesy of Apple in 1993, it soon became clear that the Californian company's sole aim was to sell iPods.
The fortunes of the content owners were of little interest to them and so the record companies found themselves parting with individual tracks for pennies instead of whole albums for pounds.
Phil Hardy's book explains how, in a few short years, the long-established record industry became an irrelevance as its slow-moving executives were comprehensively outmanoeuvred by a generation of outsiders who fully understood the new technology and the new market it had created.