WHAT’S that coming over the hill? Is it a monster? Is it a monster?
One of the most iconic choruses of the mid-2000s, but The Automatic’s greatest hit, along with the majority of their back catalogue, is under threat.
The South Wales rockers, who quietly faded away in 2010 left behind a long-lasting legacy, in the form of one of the catchiest songs in recent times – Monster.
Despite being 15-years-old at this point, it is still well known, and has continued to rack up millions of plays on streaming sites such as Spotify and iTunes’s offshoot Apple Music.
However, in recent days – that has come crashing to a halt, as the track, along with The Automatic’s debut album – Not Accepted Anywhere, has vanished.
In a situation highlighting the perils of online streaming versus physical media, the entire album has largely disappeared, without warning or explanation.
It comes as a further blow to fans of the Cowbridge band, as their second album, This is a Fix, met a similar fate some time ago.
Now, it leaves just their third and final album, Tear the Signs Down, as the only album remaining online.
Having been published by a different label to the first two, this offers some clue as to why this remains, while the others have vanished.
Can we expect to see these restored?
Since The Automatic came to an end, the original band members who remained largely drifted into a less rock-and-roll life, starting families and securing jobs.
But, being outside of the industry, it has made efforts to get their music back online more of a challenge.
Addressing the situation, former drummer Iwan Griffiths revealed that at some stage, a box had failed to be ticked, and the licences for the albums had been allowed to expire.
Continuing, he said that they were currently in search for the person “who has the power to push the button”, to bring the songs back to playlists worldwide.
In a post to fans, he said: “Over the last few years, our songs have been disappearing from pretty much all the streaming services.
“It has something to do with licenses expiring and label buy outs. Somewhere among all this, whatever boxes that need ticking to get things playing again haven’t been ticked.
“We’re currently doing all we can to find the person who has the power to push the button and get the songs back.
“These days we’re just a few guys with jobs and families and general life stuff, so things take a bit longer to sort than if we had management and music biz people to help us figure this stuff out.
“We’re hoping for some good news soon and you’ll all be the first to know when we get it.”