Putting out an album is an incredible amount of work if you want it to be a success. There are endless hours of promotion, of building websites and graphics made for each piece and section, that are pliable enough to fit different mediums, or the writing of music, the organizing of the band, on and on and on--it's an intense practice for those that want to be successful.
Musicians sometimes focus solely on the music and I think that's an appreciable choice, but if a band expects to catch a second look in 2019 in a world inundated with musicians that have ACCESS to the same publishing opportunities everyone else does, the field is littered with competition. That competition may not always be adequate or good, but they're filling the same space you're filling as a band.
Professionalism, quality, commitment, business acumen, and all kinds of other things are required to separate a band from the herd. Quality isn't good enough anymore. Of course there's the off-chance you get lucky or have access to resources others don't. But for the everyday working band, if you want that brand of success, it's work.
Take a band that has day jobs, that works from 8-5 everyday, or worse, dealing with people, dealing with bosses, or doing something they may not generally like to do. Adding additional requirements, like band business, to the scheme makes things that much more difficult. It's not for everyone, but it's undoubtedly still necessary.
So yes, while working from the bottom up and can difficult and challenging in millions of unforeseen ways, it can be as equally rewarding. When we pass small thresholds, whether it be likes or follower counts, total streams on songs, have active users on our distributed media, get mentioned in a small production--all of those things matter to us because of how hard we work. Getting to play in front of people is the privilege of hard work, not the expectation. Remember that.