There’s a delightful irony in this: Metallica, long-term DRM advocates, iTunes hold-outs, and MP3 haters, are releasing a branded jacket that includes Skullcandy speakers and–horror of horrors–an iPod dock connector.
The M4 jacket looks to be a limited release, in a run of about 800 units. It’s being made in collaboration with sportswear company Sessions and includes Skullcandy’s speaker and amp unit, sleeve control panel, waterproof iPod or iPhone pocket, and Metallica-inspired art. It’ll go for $330 when it launches next month.
In short, it’s just one in list of similar jackets designed with iPod integration built-in. But then you remember that Metallica, despite being the most popular heavy metal act ever, have long held that digital music was a very bad thing–an open door to music piracy. The band was among the group that sued to bring down the original Napster in 2000.
Now iTunes is the biggest music retailer–and DRM free–the iPod is the world’s best-selling MP3 player, the iPhone is the hottest smartphone on sale, and–bang! Here’s Metallica doing an abrupt about-face and releasing it’s discography on iTunes, and launching iPod-friendly clothing. It’s so macho.