Archive for the 'Music' Category

They’re a funny old bunch, Sony.

On the one hand they’re a bunch of idiots, whose copy-protected music CDs can leave your computer open to virus attack. OK, I’m sensationalising, but that surely is a sign of a company that just doesn’t get it. It’s like they believe that if they don’t install something really nasty on the CD, the consumer is just bound to pirate it. Meanwhile, illegal copies of the CDs appear through the usual channels within hours of release – as per usual. This sort of thing just doesn’t work Sony – it’s only ever going to generate you bad P.R.

On the other hand, they produce some absolutely fantastic hardware and commission some wonderful adverts [thanks Eeen] in which to showcase it.

Go figure.

Update: It gets worse for Sony

Brilliant: It would appear that Sony’s copyright protection software is itself in breach of copyright [thanks Andy]. They’re really thought this one though, haven’t they?

Album of your life

Owen posted an album of his life today. He’s by no means the first either – Stuart posted the wonderful Ubermix a while back aswell.

I’ve thought about doing a similar thing myself a few times in the past. The thing is, I don’t think I could – at least not without it being a huge multi-disc compendium. There’s just so much that i’d want to put in there, and I can’t see myself being able to edit it down to one CD at all.

The problem lies with albums, or rather that I can’t pick out one particular track. I too remember the evenings in the first year of college spent listening to Portishead’s Dummy. There’s no way I could pick one standout track from there – there’s too much good stuff to choose from. Then there’s the other albums that I played to death back then: The Fat of the Land, Mezzanine, Brothers Gonna Work It Out and Asylum to name but a few. How can I take just one track from each of those? I can’t (especially seeing as one of them is a mix album where are no tracks as such).

Sod it I thought, I’ll list off my all time favourite albums. That’s all well and good, except even that list got far far far too long within a space of about ten minutes. Right then, favourite artists it is then. Or rather, it isn’t, because again, there’s bloody loads of them. So I’ve given up on that idea for now.

So it seems that Olly’s favourite band is “Various Artists”. Stick that on your shiny new iPod, it’s bound to be good.

I got the poison!

Prodigy, live on Radio 1, right now.

Very loud, very very good indeed.

That is all.

The iTunes Visualiser

I really like iTunes‘ built in Visualiser. I could watch it all day.

No, seriously, I could. I find it absolutely mesmerising. Back in the days of Winamp I’d seek out loads of different visualisers but this one makes all the pretty patterns that they ever did at the click of a button.

This is a bit sad really isn’t it?

Mr Scruff

So we’re sat in The Conservatory having a pint on a friday night. The DJ ends his set with I might as well plug the album. Its called Trouser Jazz and its been out a while.

BLOODY HELL! That’s Mr Scruff! Playing in our local!

About 24 hours later, Owen and myself are at the town hall for his proper gig. Pete was supposed to be joining us, but unfortunately he was stuck at some family do or other. Its safe to say that he missed out, big style.

We had a fantastic evening, spent chatting at the bar to various random people we hadn’t seen in ages and dancing to one of the most random mixes I have ever come across. A nice selection of classical jazz standards, mixed in with various cool rhythms from around the world. Then just when you thought it was safe he’d chuck in some big and bouncy hip-hop number or some classic techno. This was of course sprinkled with Mr Scruff’s own tunes — Spandex Man went down a storm. The graphics up on the big screens were ace too. Classic Mr Scruff imagery mixed in with a selection of fantastic slogans like Wobble Those Legs!, Drink Tea!!! and Big Up Cheltenham Massive.

Before we left Owen bought a tea towel and I got myself a nice mug. I’d probably have bought a teapot too, but they were a tad expensive.

All in all a quality night out, despite the lightning and torrential rain on the way home. It was quite amusing watching people absolutely jump out of their skin at the sound of thunderbolts.

Music on your mobile? Pah!

I was reading Jeff Croft‘s latest post about just how much he thinks mobile companies are going to rip people off to download music over their networks. In the comments, Jared Christiensen asks a perfectly valid question:

Why on earth would anyone want to buy music and listen to it on a cellphone?

Well as of right now, I don’t think you would. But lets look forward a little bit.

There are current generation mobiles that are able to play mp3 (etc) music files, and have 32mb or so of memory on board. Some of these can even extend that with flash memory cards. What’s more, you can get 4gb flash cards these days. It won’t be all that long before they become relatively cheap.

Add those two together and you’ve got a mobile phone with 4gb of storage that’s perfectly capable of playing music. Do you see what we’ve made? That’s absolutely right: Its an iPod mini phone.

No doubt its got a colour screen, a camera, a basic organiser and some games on it too, not to mention the bluetooth capability. Its a wireless iPod photo mini phone. And lets be clear on this: It won’t be too long before these things sprout hard drives, giving them proper amounts of storage.

The iPod will be well and truly out of a job. After all, why would you carry an iPod (or whatever) and a phone about in your pocket when you can have one device that does the job of both? That is why Apple have hopped into bed with Motorola and created the iTunes phone. They can see exactly where the smartphone market is going. Its going to trample all over their biggest market.

Of course that doesn’t necessarily answer the question Jared posed. That one’s obvious: Because you can!

Starflyer 59

I’d never even heard of Starflyer 59 until Jon Hicks went mad and plastered them all over his site. I eventually caved in and had a look at their site, which has exerpts from their new album “Talking Voice vs Singing Voice“.

I think I’m going to have to purchase it. They sound a bit like a post Kelli Dayton Sneaker Pimps crossed with New Order … or something. I like it either way. I’ll let you judge for yourself.

First Impressions

Going Native by Descent World

The long awaited new DVD from Descent World came through the door this morning. If you’re not into your bicycles and your dirt you’re not really going to be up for this, bus as you may well be aware I’m somewhat fanatical about the things.

I’m happy to say its a pretty good video. Not quite up to the high standards of Earthed or The Collective, but pretty damn good nonetheless. There’s a little too much dirt jumping in there for my liking, but that’s offset by some lovely footage from Fort William, Innerleithen, Dunkeld and various other tracks around Europe. Its always nice ace seeing the professionals blasting down tracks and being able to say “I’ve ridden that!” in a way that you really can’t with most of the videos coming from the States and Canada. The only real problem is that its not long enough.

Luxembourg by The Bluetones

A while back, The Bluetones had the audacity to release a new album without telling me! The bastards! Still, I got a copy of it eventually, and the early signs are that its a stormer. Its edged Evil Nine out of my work PC’s CD drive for now anyway.

Its a different sound to their previous outings, this time they’ve gone a bit rocky and electro. For me that’s a good thing – it seems to work well with their dependably great lyricism. I’m not going to say any more until I’ve had a chance to listen to it a bit more, but thus far I’m enjoying it.