This post is a long-time coming. Let me tell you a story...
Imagine a time when people didn't understand what Mp3s were. I can remember my first downloading experience being Metallica's track from the Mission Impossible movie, "I Disappear". This is essentially what prompted Lars Ulrich and the boys to file that huge lawsuit against Napster back in 1998/1999. Mp3s had a very strange stigma attached to them at the time. With many people being afraid to download from Napster, a site arose with the simple URL of mp3.com.
Mp3.com was relatively monumental at the time of its creation. It was a FREE service that allowed ANY band to upload two songs in Mp3 format. An obvious pre-cursor to MySpace and BandCamp, Mp3.com was THE destination to find new bands online at the time. Prior to this your only hopes at finding new bands were through the liner notes of the discs and 7"s you actually bought (crazy concept, right?). IF you were internet-savvy you could MAYBE track down some bands on sites like GeoCities, Tripod or Homestead. Chances are, however, if you managed to find these sites the bandwidth usage limit had already been reached due to more than one person downloading the Real Media file that month.
Mp3 allowed smaller independent bands to "compete" with the likes of any other band out there. I know this first hand as my shitty high school hardcore band made it to Number 1 on the Metal Charts for two days in a row (we beat out Zao and Evergreen Terrace). You could make "radio stations" which were the pre-cursor to podcasts. Later in its lifetime you could even make your songs available for download. It was a really monumental thing.
Now that I've gotten completely off-track, I'll get to the reason why I'm making this post. My first true love from the mp3.com era was a considerably obscure band called Peacekeeper. Considering the band never responded to the e-mail I sent them on mp3.com, the only information I could ever find on the band was that they were centered around the Minneapolis area and that they had a track on a Burning Records compilation.
The band never went on to release anything other than a demo that I spent a solid 13 years searching for. Thanks to the combined efforts of Jordan from Too Pure To Die and Evan from Nehemiah, the Mp3s of this 7 song demo finally landed in my e-mail inbox a few days ago. I've been listening to it non-stop ever since. The band had Christian overtones and a very emotional metalcore sound that most would compare to early Poison The Well. I obviously think the band has it's own uniqueness to it, but I could go on for hours about the perfection of this demo and the era in which it came from.