Spotify has made arguably the biggest move yet in its streaming war with Apple Music by launching its first ever documentary, a four-part series examining the early years of heavy metal giants Metallica.
Entitled Landmark – Metallica: The Early Years, the documentary features exclusive band interviews, rare archive footage and companion playlists. It will be available on Spotify’s mobile platform in the UK, US, Sweden and Germany, with the first episode ready to view now.
The launch marks a major escalation in Spotify’s video offering, as the market-leading streaming service continues to fend off attempts from Apple Music to erode its significant market share. Just three weeks ago, Apple Music secured the rights to a new Carpool Karaoke spinoff show, in what was seen as something of a coup for the brand.
Now, Spotify has hit back with its Landmark launch. And, should it be successful, could well pave the way for similar artist-themed films and documentaries to follow. The firm has already pledged its commitment to producing more original video content, having announced 12 new programmes focusing on music and pop culture back in May of this year.
"We are developing original content that is rooted in music, pop culture, and animation that is driven by the passion and sense of humor of our audience,” said Spotify’s global head of content, Tom Calderone. “We are working with artists, producers, and partners who understand that the Spotify audience has a strong connection to artists and wants to go deeper into their worlds, see their performances and expressions, and hear their stories."
Speaking to Bloomberg, he also commented: “Music will always be most important, but our audience likes us and wants more from us. We have to figure out a second act, and I think it will come out of video. The idea is to make sure users know they can come here for something other than playlists.”
All eyes will now shift to Apple Music to see what kind of response it has up its sleeve in light of Spotify’s latest manoeuvre. A much-anticipated redesign of its service is set to be rolled out this autumn, while a launch date for its Carpool Karaoke spinoff show has yet to be confirmed.