The Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan recently admitted in a new interview that he paid a hacker out of his own pocket not to leak his newest “rock opera,” ATUM, which is out officially now.
Videos by American Songwriter
Corgan talked about the three-act work the Klein/Ally Show on KROQ, saying that with the help of the FBI, he was able to track the hacker down and make a deal so that the music wasn’t ever leaked.
“They were all probably the most catchy, single-y type songs,” Corgan said on the radio show. “So it’s like, not only is it six months too early, you’re pretty much giving away the album before you even have a chance to set your feet into the ground. Somehow, some hacker was offering the files for money, and we were able to trace it and pay off and keep it from leaking. The FBI got involved… I don’t know how they got what they got.”
[RELATED: he Smashing Pumpkins Reveal 2023 North American Tour, New Single “Spellbinding”]
Corgan said he paid the computer wiz out of his own pocket, adding, “What we were able to do was stop the leak from happening, because it was a mercenary person who had hacked somebody—I don’t want to say who—and they had other stuff from other artists. It wasn’t like some Pumpkins fan that was hellbent on breaking it on Reddit. Somehow, they gave some information that allowed the FBI to track them.”
Corgan added that the hacker had other “shocking” leaks in their files, including “classic stuff from bands of the past probably doing reissues.” He also said that he doesn’t know the “end result” of the investigation into the computer pirate.
Corgan’s new three-part album, ATUM, which is pronounced “autumn,” was released over the past few months. The final installment was released Friday (May 5). It is billed as a follow-up to The Smashing Pumpkins’ prior albums, including Melon Collie and the Infinite Sadness.
Photo by Daniel Boczarski/Getty Images