Have you heard the news? There's a new Arcade Fire record out! Reflektor has been one of the most buzzed about releases of the year, helped along in no small part by a pretty brilliant series of stunts on the band's side. Well-timed teasers, a Banksy-esque graffiti campaign, and two impromptu shows at a warehouse in Brooklyn under the name the Reflektors, all urged along an already fervent anticipation to hear the record, to possess it in the months leading up to its official release.

A little record shop in Kilkenny, Ireland was keen to this fact when on Thursday, having found themselves in possession of copies of Reflektor, albeit low-quality and truncated copies, they decided to begin to sell them (as a record store is wont to do). As soon as the band got wind of this, they knew they had to take action. And so, mere hours after the story broke about The Little Record Store That Could, Arcade Fire released the full-length teaser to Reflektor, equipped with full lyric video.

Days ahead of the technical release date, the album was already out in the open. Artists railing against leaks, bootlegs and illegal downloading is not a new phenomenon. But in this case, is it even a problem? I would argue no. Here's the way I see it: first, the old saying 'all press is good press' really rings true here. What this story about the record store did was keep people talking about Arcade Fire, and then when they decided to drop the album teaser, the internet damn near exploded, to the point where the meta-internet must have been all, "Who the fuck is Arcade Fire?". And anyway, is this even bad press? The whole premise here is that people can't wait to hear their music! This is not a problem for the band!

The real problem is that of artistic control though. Understandably, artists, musicians, anyone who creates, wants to feel they have some sort of control over when and how people consume their work, and laws protecting such property are in place for the very purpose of protecting such control. But I have news for all of those artists who think they have control: you don't. At least not anymore, and certainly not with releases of this magnitude. Today's creative landscape, if I may, doesn't give a fuck about your artistic control. Consumption is king, and the moment it has been created, it is there for consuming. I am not defending lecherous consumption practices, but they are a fact, and as such, the game has changed.

In fact, Arcade Fire seem to recognize this. Instead of throwing a hissy fit about the Irish leak, they gave the people what they wanted, in a way they were comfortable with. They played it perfectly, adapting to the discourse, and all told, coming out on top. It almost makes me wonder if they planted the leak themselves; after all, the lyric video was all ready to go - the band didn't miss a beat (so to speak). The leak will do nothing to sway fans against the record. If anything, it heightened the frenzy and added to the allure. To some degree, no harm no foul.

However, back in September, a Texan freelance writer argued otherwise, when he published a piece on Slate Magazine's website bemoaning Arcade Fire's Reflektor graffiti campaign. He pointed out that, while he was a fan of the music, he was not a fan of anyone who covered up beloved street art with marketing posters that could not be removed. Shortly after the piece's publication, Win Butler wrote a handwritten letter to the writer, apologizing for the incident, but more broadly, addressing this negotiation between what he can and cannot control. When he noted that the posters were supposed to be put up with 'water soluble paint or chalk', not the more permanent paint that was actually used, Win said, "it is sometimes hard to control all these tiny details when you are doing something on such a large scale."

You can find Stephanie on Twitter: @MusicaholicAnon