Fake Shore Drive’s Andrew Barber got an interesting pseudonymous e-mail this morning from someone called “Prometheus,” who claims to have lifted Rhymefest’s iPod from a public appearance and found his long-delayed album El Che on it. Prometheus is now promising to leak the album a track at a time over the next few weeks.

Records are leaked online all the time and for all kinds of reasons: to generate buzz before a legit release, to get revenge, or just because a copy got left within arm’s reach of someone who shouldn’t have it. Prometheus’s reasoning is new to me, though. In a lengthy screed accompanying the first two leaked tracks, he (I’m guessing from the language) puts Fest on blast for his poor choice of record label, his tour cancellations, and his lax iPod security, and complains a lot a lot a lot about El Che‘s repeated delays. Contrary to all obvious logic, he promises that this is going to be a good thing for Fest:

I got songs from your iPod. I’m going to leak a record from EL CHE every week until you drop a single or a video or some shit. The people have NO FUCKING IDEA how hot this shit sounds. Well, I’m going to show them. You had everything on your iPod. Even old, vintage shit. I’m gonna drop that, too. Until you or your weak-ass label keep your word and start dropping some fucking music. And, I’m not playing. I’m going to make you a better artist. I can’t wait to see what you do.

Some of FSD’s typically salty commenters are speculating that this might be a hoax, but if it’s for real it might represent a brand new kind of Internet-facilitated artist-fan interaction: management guidance via online capitalist blackmail. 

Who says there’s no innovation in the rap world in 2008?