Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Music - GoodBooks, the NBT.

In my own silly way I like to find bands, and profess that they will become massive. Kaiser Chiefs was one of my better calls, but have been wrong in the past. Stapleton and The Sunshine Underground have both been mistakes in recent times.

This time however, I think I might be right. The buzz around GoodBooks is large, and I have recently found the album online, and it is bloody great.

It is out next week (I think), and suggest you become interested in them.

(Also, has anyone else noticed the regular Central Server Errors with Youtube recently?)


Walk With Me (Excellent tune)


The Illness (Which has appeared in these hallowed pages before...)

Monday, July 16, 2007

The Tale of The Two Pictures


For children everywhere in the world, this is one of the most important weeks of their lives. For adults everywhere, this week is one of the most important weeks of their children's lives.
For geeky students like myself, this is one of the most important weeks of our lives.


Pokemon Pearl is ruining my life, but at the same time enriching it.

Also, the Citizen Erased Campaign did relatively well. It reached in the chart... 125.

Friday, July 13, 2007

The Tale of the Citizen Erased Campaign

The way the chart has been compiled has been been changed, and it now included digital downloads. The problem is, and I am sure many will testify, that I download a fair amount of music illegally, through file sharing networks. I, unlike some, have flirted for a year or so with legal music through Napster. The deal was really good, and fitted my musical tastes perfectly: £15 for unlimited music, which I can listen to on the PC and transfer to my Zen. Lovely.

Until, that is, you notice that the DRM used by Napster is totally shite. Janus (or PlaysforSure) is hopeless, constantly loosing licenses every month, not downloading properly and then when transferring them to your Zen you notice that it takes up 25% more space as an equivalent MP3... which, to be honest, is not so much, until you release that 20Gb of music has just became 15Gb. It also ripped the battery so badly.

So, I gave up. It was fun while it lasted, so I found a program that broke the encryption, recoded most of my music into "illegal" copies (I had spent over £100 on it, so not really that illegal), and re downloaded all my other stuff off torrent sites. Boofuckinghoo.

Though, this creates a few problems with the industry. Firstly, how will anyone make any money from the albums that they make? Surely, if we all downloaded every track from every artist for free, then they would be broke. Not entirely... for example, if I was in a famous band, I would notice the downloading nature of the fans... and stop making traditional albums, preferring to release my tracks and collections of new material when ever I make them for free from my website. Then, if successful, through Myspace/Youtube/Facebook etc I would arrange online streaming gigs, to build up feelings for live concerts, all still free. Then, I would actually go on tour, charging for people to see me live, and this is where the money should be made back from tickets, merchandise, and the exclusive recordings that you can buy at the gigs, each gig getting a unique one that will not be available at any other gig. The economics removes the need for a record label, and the self promotion, whilst it might be shameless, is well executed.

Right on cue... BBC talk about the free give away with the Mail on Sunday - Prince's new CD, Plant Earth. Luckily, my Dad reads the shit rag, so we will get it.
(see http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/6897178.stm )

What about iTunes? I found a site that can put your own material onto iTunes for free, and they take a cut of the profits. But is that even worthwhile? People I know that use iTunes rarely download music from it, and it is only one track here and there.

This brings me round and back to the point of the post. The Muse fan sites recently hatched a rather quaint plan; buy from iTines/HMV/Napster etc an old Muse track. If everyone on this forum buys it once, from each of the stores, at 79p a pop, the track will achieve enough sales to at least appear in the Top 40 charts. The track chosen is unreleased, long, un single friendly, but regarded as one of Muse's finest pieces of work; a 7 minute long rock opera.

I downloaded it from iTunes, paid my 79p, and look forward to see how well it does on Sunday in the chart. Can the system be screwed? Is it really screwing it?

Where the idea was born:
http://muselive.com/
News Coverage:
http://www.music-news.com/ShowNews.asp?nItemID=14513
Myspace promotion:
http://www.myspace.com/ce4no12007
Youtube Promotion:
http://www.myspace.com/ce4no12007

It is only 79p - Click.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

The Tale of Our Love to Admire and Metalli-

An artist that can make me suddenly stop channel hopping and coerce all my concentration into one single moment is something that I rarely find, though a few do exist. When hearing in March the new Idlewild single, I had to brake the car, and drop a gear; I had to listen to every chord, every melody and every single snare hit until it ended, and then was left salivating for more. This meant that when hearing the album I was even more excited, and those who have read this blog will remember my review of Idlewild, and how I was pleasantly surprised by it. Another artist like this is Incubus.

A further example is the lesser known Interpol. They have released two albums, Turn on the Bright Lights and Antics, and both of these albums rate in my top albums that I can listen to non-stop, without skipping a single track. Something that, even with Idlewild and Incubus I don't encounter. So, upon hearing that a new album was on its way, I was much enticed and enthused.

So, understandably, you can expect disappointment from something that I am so willing to be great, that it must fail. If I wish it to be as great as the previous albums, I can only look at it disdain when it tries something new, non-Interpol, and far too left field.

Luckily, they miss this hurdle, and for me, have reaffirmed my love of music; this band, the survivors of the New York age of The Strokes, Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Mooney Suzuki, have produced a very solid album, one that reaches further than the previous albums in scope, but is still filled with the gloom and darkness of the first album, and the one-string riffs that still sound more complicated than they really are.

Pioneer to the Falls, the opening track from the album, is startling, as is Wrecking Ball and Lighthouse, two atmospheric songs that shy away from the verse-chorus structure that was so prevalent in Antics, but elsewhere on No I in Threesome, Mammoth and Pace is the Trick this can still be seen, and is handled expertly.

A very impressive album, and one that I am sure that, even though I was worried after two listens, 15 or so further on, I can imagine fitting so well into the back catalogue, that I will still be able to press play on Interpol's name, and not have to hover over the skip key.

On a related note, what a bunch of bullshit the Live Earth gigs were. They were over hyped, waste of time, and possibly have caused as much damage as they are trying to stop us from creating. I watched almost none of, and the only moment I did watch was cut short. Metallica played the three from The Black Album that you could have bet evens on, starting with Sad But True, slipping (via some lovely and totally uncrowd friendly feedback) into Nothing Else Matters. Before crashing into Enter Sandman, one the greatest metal live songs available, the BBC cut it, to which we are treated to Jonathan Ross, who rather insultingly gives us Crowded House. Who? I thought they had split up! And they were not even playing in Britain too, but was broadcast from Australia.

I notice that, in recent reports, more people complained about the cutting short of the Metallica set than for the unprompted swearing, but I am sure if the total carbon foot print of the concert was shown, that number would be doubled, tripled, and possibly be slightly greater that the average audience.

Thanks to everyone who did not watch it, you helped it show that we know that the whole thing was a set up, a publicity stunt, and a rather hypocritical method of showing climate change. I am no saviour my self, but at least I don't pretend that I am.