Re: All the best music was written before 1988 anyway
artists creativity and quality went to shit as soon as they are signed up by a major label
.. unless they use the Marillion model - ask the fans to crowdsource the new album (ie - buy the album before it's made and use the funds to actually make the album) and then have a distribution-only contract with a major label.
Mind you, it helps to have a fairly major fanbase to start with who don't mind putting down £20 in the hope of getting a new album in 6 months. It also helps to have the reputation of producing said albums..
 AKA 'slightly rabid' :-)