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Loveless
June 1, 2012 9:18 PM   Subscribe


 
If I had not been told this wasn't the MBV version, and it was playing on the car radio or in the background at some party, I would not have questioned it for a moment. Impressive, especially given the unique nature of the original.
posted by not_on_display at 9:38 PM on June 1, 2012 [3 favorites]


When I first heard it I thought "So this is the MBV remaster everyone's talking about?".
posted by dunkadunc at 9:40 PM on June 1, 2012


Sounds like crap
posted by gonna get a dog at 9:41 PM on June 1, 2012 [7 favorites]


Wait, is this a cover of the album? Or some sort of remix? If that's not actually Bilinda Butcher singing then it's an alarmingly good impression.
posted by nebulawindphone at 9:50 PM on June 1, 2012


I mean, I guess "doing a Bilinda Butcher impression" just means "singing in a high spacy voice and mixing the vocals low enough that nobody's going to notice the details." But still.
posted by nebulawindphone at 9:53 PM on June 1, 2012 [2 favorites]


Is it just me, or is the drum tempo really unstable? The original is just a little bit late to the beat, but pretty solid. This is more on the beat, but the tempo goes up and down. It's bothering me. The feeling of the kick is way different too. In the original I feel like I can hear the rubber on the drummer's sneakers. This just sounds too balanced and generic.

The Shields impression is good though. Except for there being actual bass under it.
posted by hanoixan at 10:01 PM on June 1, 2012 [3 favorites]


I know it seems easier than ever these days to dial in a generic "shoegaze preset" sound with the technology available to us, but holy hell. As an experiment in recreating the particular guitar sounds on this album as faithfully as possible, this is impressive as hell.
posted by naju at 10:09 PM on June 1, 2012


What exactly is the deal here? His sound cloud says, "This is an improved mix of the "album", with some improved guitar sounds." But the most obvious difference to me is that the vocals on the Gordrann version sound like garbage.
posted by Jazz.bot at 10:13 PM on June 1, 2012


It can actually be pretty difficult to get the right, warm sound out of today's digital effects. That's why a lot of people trying to imitate Boards of Canada can't get it quite right- a big part of their sound was from the samples being run through cassette tapes over and over again.
posted by dunkadunc at 10:14 PM on June 1, 2012 [1 favorite]


This is pretty damn impressive.
posted by equalpants at 10:16 PM on June 1, 2012


Speaking as someone who has spent many a fun hour trying to deconstruct the pieces of a specific "sound" in the studio, with some notable successes (the squealy "siren" sound at the beginning of Fascination Street) and some notable failures (namely the bass guitar sound from the same song), I have to say I'm floored by how good this is.

If gordrann came out with a book outlining, in painful (to the non-interested) detail on how they pulled this off I'd buy it so fast.
posted by chimaera at 10:22 PM on June 1, 2012 [3 favorites]


Key word is "pain"
posted by ReeMonster at 10:29 PM on June 1, 2012 [1 favorite]


Wow wow wow. Someone actually did it.
posted by roboton666 at 10:52 PM on June 1, 2012


Did what? Is this a 'thing' people have been attempting?

I have to admit I really don't get it.
posted by item at 11:13 PM on June 1, 2012 [5 favorites]


Yeah, I don't get it either. I like the original just fine, thank you.

I listened for about 10 seconds before the agonizing amaturishness of it became too much to bear.
posted by j03 at 11:22 PM on June 1, 2012 [1 favorite]


I have to admit I really don't get it.

Like many feats of technical skill and artistry, some of the wow-factor is dependent on whether you've ever tried something like this.
posted by chimaera at 11:22 PM on June 1, 2012 [7 favorites]


Now do Metal Machine Music!
posted by alex_skazat at 11:30 PM on June 1, 2012 [10 favorites]


Actually, now make that other MBV that what's his name keeps saying he's working on, but isn't.


And I'll say this: the MBV show a few years back was incredible. They really are incredible.
posted by alex_skazat at 11:31 PM on June 1, 2012


"Is this a 'thing' people have been attempting?"

Emulating a favorite recording is a good way to get your recording chops together, both playing technique and practice as a producer.
posted by Ardiril at 11:58 PM on June 1, 2012


"Like many feats of technical skill and artistry, some of the wow-factor is dependent on whether you've ever tried something like this."

I have tried things like this, and you're right. I'd literally spend days working on a single track, then realise "hey, OK, I've learnt a lot, but it'll never be as good as the original - and even if I do get there, I've just wasted a week making something they did first. Oh well…".

"I listened for about 10 seconds before the agonizing amaturishness of it became too much to bear."

Anyone remember the knock-off compilations record companies used to crank out using a bunch of session musos to almost, but not quite, perfectly cover Top-40 hits? Where the song name and original artist appeared prominently in the track listing on the back, but with "performed by …" hidden somewhere else on the sleeve? Records I'm sure were deliberately made to be bought by well-meaning oldies and proudly presented to unsuspecting teenage relatives for birthdays or christmas?

As the occasional recipient of those from my grandmothers and aunts, this immediately transports my mind to a weird place where technical appreciation, a sense of futility, disappointment, and fremdschämen meet…
posted by Pinback at 12:11 AM on June 2, 2012 [8 favorites]


This is like those people you see in museums painstakingly mimicking an important painting. It's not to make a version of the painting that's "better".
posted by dhartung at 12:27 AM on June 2, 2012


Just hope the poor guy doesn't give himself tinnitus, as Shields did, as a direct result of this utter crap.
posted by colie at 12:49 AM on June 2, 2012


His version of "Only Shallow" sounds totally different to me. And yet, listening to the original, I can see that it's a really faithful version in some ways -- just not along the dimensions that stand out to me. Weird. Still impressive, though.
posted by en forme de poire at 1:04 AM on June 2, 2012


Now do 4′33″!
posted by Mezentian at 1:46 AM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


yeah, at first blush, this is pretty different, but then on more careful listens, he does come pretty close.

I bet there was a bunch of serendipity in the original, and it is hard to recreate that.

Also the drumming is too robotic on this cover. I like the human playing on the original.
posted by jonbro at 1:57 AM on June 2, 2012


The drums sound a little off. Needs quantizing.

Colm?
posted by XhaustedProphet at 2:01 AM on June 2, 2012


Interesting that the original drumming on Loveless is coming across as human to people. That was mostly sampled hits and drum machines!
posted by naju at 2:15 AM on June 2, 2012 [4 favorites]


I've read a few complaints about the tinny drums on Loveless, but I actually like them as they are. The layered guitars and effects can be so overwhelming that the thinner drum sound, at least for me, is a welcoming counterpoint—sort of a tenuous tether that strains against the sonic barrage.
posted by quosimosaur at 2:36 AM on June 2, 2012


It's a "Sonic Cathedral of Sound." And don't their amps go up to 12?

I don't mean to thread-shit, but this band do annoy me with their 'we're so loud' posture.

It's a fact that they have damaged young people's hearing at several of their gigs (and now in fact give out earplugs presumably as a defence against litigation). And for what? The singer himself has tinnitus! Wouldn't he want to protect young people (he's now an old fart like me) from one of the world's most distressing and incurable medical conditions?
posted by colie at 3:20 AM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


Why?
posted by Decani at 3:23 AM on June 2, 2012


Can somebody tell me what this guy did? I don't understand what "it" is. Did he just record a cover of the album? Is Soundcloud somehow integral to the operation here, or is that just the format he presented it in?
posted by Buffaload at 3:51 AM on June 2, 2012


If its a complete re-recording and not just a load of samples then it's impressive but still falls a long long way short of the original.

and now I need to go and cleanse my palate with some Fiona.
posted by Lanark at 4:13 AM on June 2, 2012


Also the drumming is too robotic on this cover. I like the human playing on the original.
posted by jonbro at 3:57 AM on June 2 [+] [!]

The drums sound a little off. Needs quantizing.

Colm?
posted by XhaustedProphet at 4:01 AM on June 2 [+] [!]
Heh.
posted by nebulawindphone at 5:58 AM on June 2, 2012 [2 favorites]


Reminds me of the old Steven Wright joke: "While I was gone, somebody rearranged all the furniture in my bedroom. They put it in exactly the same place it was."
posted by gwint at 6:13 AM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


Soundcloud's player UI sure has a way of showing you how little dynamic range there is in a recording with the quiet parts mixed up to 9.5, doesn't it?

If you're jonesing for a cover of Loveless that's different and interesting, Japancakes has a lovely instrumental version of the whole album. Naturally someone's uploaded the whole thing to Youtube, "no copyright intended".
posted by Nelson at 8:39 AM on June 2, 2012 [3 favorites]


Soundcloud's streaming compresses the shit out of a file. The download is the original file.
posted by Ardiril at 9:12 AM on June 2, 2012


Just hope the poor guy doesn't give himself tinnitus, as Shields did, as a direct result of this utter crap.

I'm one of the people for whom My Bloody Valentine completely changed how I make and appreciate music, and yes there have been many hours in my basement trying to make things out of that sound. I get that loudness is part of it, and loudness is harmful to myself and those who choose to listen to it.

The backlash to MBV is kind of funny to me though, I've never known any fans of the band to evangelize for them; it's so clearly *not* for everyone. I've seen them three times and the 20 minutes of You Made Me Realize they always close with is difficult for even me to bear. But I've never grabbed anyone and said "You must appreciate this!" or "You don't like this? Well, here let me explain to you why you're not getting it..."

Anyway, it reminds me of the riot that broke out at the premiere of Stravinsky's Rite of Spring. Not every piece of music that challenges the ear is great art, but what differentiates important, revolutionary art from simply very good art is that it always offends some people.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 9:17 AM on June 2, 2012 [3 favorites]


It's a fact that they have damaged young people's hearing at several of their gigs (and now in fact give out earplugs presumably as a defence against litigation). And for what? The singer himself has tinnitus! Wouldn't he want to protect young people (he's now an old fart like me) from one of the world's most distressing and incurable medical conditions?

This is such a bizarre criticism of MBV to me. The last concert I went to where I didn't need earplugs was a Belle & Sebastian show. By this standard almost all bands with amplifiers (and DJs, etc) would be opening themselves up to lawsuits. Plus, of course, the production and mastering on Loveless is a relative whisper compared to today's standards.
posted by en forme de poire at 9:47 AM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


Anyway, it reminds me of the riot that broke out at the premiere of Stravinsky's Rite of Spring. Not every piece of music that challenges the ear is great art

Oh come on, there's a clear difference between music that intellectually 'challenges the ear' Stravinsky-style, and a guitar sound that damages your body's hearing organ permanently.

The last concert I went to where I didn't need earplugs was a Belle & Sebastian show. By this standard almost all bands with amplifiers (and DJs, etc) would be opening themselves up to lawsuits.


They should be. In fact in the UK there are very clear limits on the decibels that theatres and promoters can expose customers to - just like there are rules about fire exits etc. It's just that these rules are not enforced and the promoters flout them, with the legal responsibility resting with the local authority and not the coked-up music industry people that have already moved to a different town anyway.

I get that loudness is part of it, and loudness is harmful to myself and those who choose to listen to it.


My point was that Kevin Shields gives out the earplugs but should know that young kids will not use them - just Google for the MBV bravado about not using them during the band's 'holocaust' long noisy bit. Given that he didn't use them when he was younger, he should know that his young fans won't either. It's irresponsible and pointless. Loudness was a fun idea when the Beatles played Shea Stadium with 100 watts - but now technology has moved on and nobody should be getting their ears damaged by music played by a person who has already had his ears damaged by music. We have a big billboard campaign in the UK about this at the moment.
posted by colie at 10:37 AM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


Every time I mention here that music became a mature field sometime toward the end of the last century, as painting had become some somewhat before that, a field where it has become harder and harder (although certainly not impossible) to do anything ground-breaking, I get flak.

Here's a case in point.

> > It's a fact that they have damaged young people's hearing at several of their gigs (and now in fact give out earplugs presumably as a defence against litigation). And for what? The singer himself has tinnitus! Wouldn't he want to protect young people (he's now an old fart like me) from one of the world's most distressing and incurable medical conditions?

> This is such a bizarre criticism of MBV to me. The last concert I went to where I didn't need earplugs was a Belle & Sebastian show. By this standard almost all bands with amplifiers (and DJs, etc) would be opening themselves up to lawsuits.

It's a perfectly reasonable criticism. MBV is much, much louder than almost all other bands. I hate wearing earplugs - I get ear infections - but either staying at the back or right at the front and middle of shows (where the noise levels are much less because most of the main speakers' sound goes right past you) I manage to avoid them - and I have no issues with putting my hands over my ears.

MBV's shows are so much louder than other shows that I could never do this. You're in a situation where the entire room is one walking deafness hazard. And for what reason? If you want to get the body sensations from loud music, you can put it all into the bass, where it isn't a health hazard.

I can't see any reason for doing this other than some sort of dick measuring contest - "We're the loudest band ever, ha ha ha!"
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 10:46 AM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


> The backlash to MBV is kind of funny to me though

[...]

> Anyway, it reminds me of the riot that broke out at the premiere of Stravinsky's Rite of Spring.

hahahaha! cough. hahahahahahah!

If you played most people the Rite of Spring, you'd still get a pretty violent response... that piece is still a difficult listen over a hundred years later.

I remember perfectly well when Loveless came out... I picked up it right away because of the hype and my first thought it, "This is pretty bland and regular, not what I expected." (My second thought was, "That effect where their pitch slowly warbles back and forth is sort of nauseating.")

Don't get me wrong - Loveless is an important pop album, even if I don't personally like it. But to compare it to the Rite of Spring in terms of originality is ridiculous.
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 10:52 AM on June 2, 2012


I know it's you, Corgan. You're not fooling anybody.
posted by nathancaswell at 10:52 AM on June 2, 2012 [2 favorites]


I can't see any reason for doing this other than some sort of dick measuring contest - "We're the loudest band ever, ha ha ha!"

I hope My Bloody Valentine got the hell off your lawn.
posted by xmutex at 10:58 AM on June 2, 2012 [3 favorites]


music became a mature field sometime toward the end of the last century, as painting had become some somewhat before that

But painting is a comparatively narrow field of expression, unlike visual art as a whole. Music is similarly broad. You've got visual stimulus as a representation of reality or ideas, and noise made into a temporal play of tension and resolution.

I'd agree that there are some fossilised types of music such as Mozart and Bach. Still lots of fun to listen to but essentially dead like Latin. But music has a way to go yet.

I hope My Bloody Valentine got the hell off your lawn.


Kevin Shields is 49 years old and Bilinda Butcher is 51.
posted by colie at 11:02 AM on June 2, 2012 [3 favorites]


> > I can't see any reason for doing this other than some sort of dick measuring contest - "We're the loudest band ever, ha ha ha!"

> I hope My Bloody Valentine got the hell off your lawn.

The album Loveless is 21 years old, its musicians older than I am.

And I'm not talking about "I don't like the music" - I'm talking about permanently damaging the hearing of young people, just like Kevin Shields did to his own hearing.
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 11:07 AM on June 2, 2012


> But music has a way to go yet.

I'd love to think so. Oh, boy, would I love to think so. You'd really have to provide me with evidence, though - really "new sounds".

Don't get me wrong - a lot of the music I listen to was recorded recently, and some very recent bands and artists are amongst my favorites. "Mature" doesn't mean "dead".
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 11:15 AM on June 2, 2012


really "new sounds"

New sounds
posted by xmutex at 11:20 AM on June 2, 2012


xmutex: Auteche is a band from 1987 - that's 25 years ago. This is a good piece, but it's not so very different from what they were doing back then.

Electronica was IMHO the last big "new sound" breakthrough...
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 11:29 AM on June 2, 2012


My point was that Kevin Shields gives out the earplugs but should know that young kids will not use them

I see your point, but on the other hand if someone goes to a loud concert and decides not to use the free hearing protection that has been provided for them, I have a hard time blaming the band. I agree that it's a good thing to make young people more aware of the consequences of going to loud concerts without ear protection and I do think it's crazy that earplugs aren't universally available at venues.
posted by en forme de poire at 11:34 AM on June 2, 2012


> I see your point, but on the other hand if someone goes to a loud concert and decides not to use the free hearing protection that has been provided for them, I have a hard time blaming the band.

I would say that if you deliberately create an environment that's a safety hazard, and if you know for sure that many, many people, your paying customers, will fall victim to this safety hazard, then you bear at least part of the responsibility for the consequences - particularly if many of your audience are young people on drugs, who are historically extremely bad decision makers, and will be making bad decisions that will affect them for life.

I also note that no one has put forth a valid artistic reason for why the shows have to be so loud. I love loud music, I'm always in the front row for Butthole Surfers concerts, and yet MBV is far, far beyond anything I could possibly tolerate. There's a huge range between "really loud" and "punishingly, deafeningly loud".
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 11:41 AM on June 2, 2012 [3 favorites]


I see your point, but on the other hand if someone goes to a loud concert and decides not to use the free hearing protection that has been provided for them, I have a hard time blaming the band.

We all trash our bodies at age 17 with booze and drugs but almost always the damage is not permanent. Saying that earplugs are available and there are warning signs at the gig is just like saying that pregnant teenage girls are 100 per cent to blame because condoms and leaflets are free at the doctor's surgery.

I also understand that it's not really the band that can know what the decibel level is in the theatre. That is the responsibility of the tour manager, and apparently many of them insist that legal levels are broken for sound because nobody's checking and the band won't want a reputation for being soft and quiet - bravado again.

The Guiness Book of Records stopped featuring the 'loudest gig' category many years ago due to these concerns, but MBV decided to reinstate it for themselves - they really are the new Spinal Tap.
posted by colie at 11:45 AM on June 2, 2012


"I know it's you, Corgan. You're not fooling anybody."

Ha! I had that thought around track two when I realized 1) the guys voice sounds like Corgan and 2) WOW how did I never realize how much Smashing Pumpkins learned from MBV!

Also, if you're in this thread trying to make some sort of nonsensical moralistic case about loudness or the intrinsic value or non-value of "Loveless" -- a work of art a lot of varied and smart people appreciate even if you do not, a work composed of technical innovation that has influenced many artists -- wow, chill out!
posted by Matt Oneiros at 12:05 PM on June 2, 2012


We all trash our bodies at age 17 with booze and drugs but almost always the damage is not permanent. Saying that earplugs are available and there are warning signs at the gig is just like saying that pregnant teenage girls are 100 per cent to blame because condoms and leaflets are free at the doctor's surgery.

I think making an analogy with a situation with so many additional, highly charged factors (e.g., a culture that favors the desires of men over women, the prevalence of anti-sexual-education crusades by social conservatives, the abortion debate) contributes a lot more heat than light.
posted by en forme de poire at 12:16 PM on June 2, 2012


I also note that no one has put forth a valid artistic reason for why the shows have to be so loud.

I listened to it without earplugs (not a wise choice but my hearing was shot from years of drumming anyway). MBV's "You Made Me Realise" live was a physical experience as much as a sonic one - I felt the music coursing through every part of my body, and it even induced a minor primitive flight-or-flight response in me. Music as holy tangible ego death. I won't forget it!
posted by naju at 12:20 PM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


I think making an analogy with a situation with so many additional, highly charged factors

Surely most of those factors are at work when young people go out get drunk and go to gigs?
posted by colie at 12:28 PM on June 2, 2012


MBV's "You Made Me Realise" live was a physical experience as much as a sonic one

Sonic cathedral of sound indeed.

As some have pointed out, you could move the audience's bodies with bass frequencies that would not cause ear damage. Something emerging from this thread is that MBV are not just poor musicians and old farts, but actually rank amateurs in terms of their understanding of how sound affects people physiologically. Get off the stage.
posted by colie at 12:47 PM on June 2, 2012


Surely most of those factors are at work when young people go out get drunk and go to gigs?

But it's not true that, for instance, only women suffer the consequences of unprotected exposure to loud music, while all bands who play loud music are exclusively male. There also aren't any powerful politicians (that I am aware of) who make campaign points out of being intractably opposed to the idea of giving out free earplugs, or of instructing young people in their proper use.
posted by en forme de poire at 12:50 PM on June 2, 2012


I've seen MBV and The Fluid. The Fluid made MBV sound like an acoustic jazz fusion band. I think I was sterile for 6 months after that. Ah, childhood.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 1:01 PM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


The Swans show I went to last year literally rattled my ribcage. Much like you hear about Merzbow, and those are just two of many examples. Also, My Bloody Valentine changed my life, the Rites of Spring thing makes sense bc I remember the Radiolab on it reminding me of albums that changed how I hear things forevermore, opening new worlds of perception much like the memory of learning to read/symbology as a child, how suddenly the whole world and all the air around you buzzes with meaning you couldn't detect flying around you before.

And I'm on my phone and this might get deleted as noise but goddamn Mefi blows at music (to anyone slightly off the beaten by the book path, and anyone who wrinkles their nose for people taking a straightruler to the form as if it was simply a rubric) and this thread is a predictable example.
posted by ifjuly at 1:10 PM on June 2, 2012 [5 favorites]


There also aren't any powerful politicians (that I am aware of) who make campaign points out of being intractably opposed to the idea of giving out free earplugs, or of instructing young people in their proper use.

OK I agree the metaphor is not accurate.

My whole beef is just that there's a band going around who are basically all 50+ years of age, getting indie-rock credibility and a few quid while intentionally, knowingly, damaging people's hearing because of an unjustifiable Spinal Tap-style belief that loud is good 'cos it 'moves your ribcage'.
posted by colie at 2:04 PM on June 2, 2012


Now do Metal Machine Music!

Here you go...
posted by PBR at 2:16 PM on June 2, 2012


Colie, your criticism here seems to be more about you than a band that many of us find things about which to appreciate. I'm sorry you suffer from tinnitus. I know from experience that it make people crazy.

A. Tinnitus does not result from one loud show. Some cases are not even the result of loud noise exposure.

B. It is possible to appreciate MBV on your home stereo at less than ear splitting volume.

C. Nearly everyone who goes to a MBV show knows they will be exposed to noise that literally exceeds the loudness of standing in front of a jet engine. This was true for me in 1991 when I saw them and they had never been to the west coast before an we had no Internet. For the poor souls who were dragged by their friends and didn't know what they were getting into, ear plugs were thoughtfully provided.

Instead of having a discussion of the astonishing aural effect that layers and layers of fuzzed out guitar loops produce, a tapestry of sound so rich as to create an hallucinatory transformative experience among those who appreciate it, an experience that made new when played live in a large room at 150 decibels--instead of a discussion of you know, the merits of the music, you've made this whole thread about "it's too loud for colie" and I think it's fine for you to make your point once, but I think it's frankly shallow as a criticism and I'm finding it tiresome.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 2:38 PM on June 2, 2012 [5 favorites]


I think I probably have a very different relationship with MBV's music than I would if I'd seen them live. In my head, they're not THE LOUDEST BAND IN THE UNIVERSE at all. They're those guys who recorded those dreamy ethereal sort of vertiginous albums, with the delicate hard-to-follow lyrics and the occasional bits of dance-pop thrown in (and oh right, they have this weird idiosyncrasy where they insist on playing really loud at their shows; I keep forgetting that part).
posted by nebulawindphone at 2:41 PM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


The 2 loudest bands I can remember seeing live were Mogwai and Dinosaur Jr, but they weren't like, painfully loud. Are MBV's shows that much louder?
posted by mannequito at 2:46 PM on June 2, 2012


Also, it's a pretty new and bizarre idea that a rock show should be "safe." Violence free, sure. But the face of popular music would be very different indeed if The Rolling Stones hadn't deployed sexual innuendo at their concerts, or if The Grateful Dead actively discouraged LSD, or if The Dead Kennedys walked off stage when people started slam dancing or any of the other ways that important artists have pushed their audiences out of their comfort zones in the last 50 years.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 2:55 PM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


Also, to return a bit from the derail, one of the things this cover version reminds me of is how much I like listening to the original Loveless on really crappy speakers, or in really crappy listening conditions. (It's great music to put on during a plane ride, or like while you're using the food processor, things like that.) It's kind of like getting a free remix of the album, because any time you hide or mask or drown out one element of it, some other element that you'd just been experiencing as background noise will come to the forefront and turn into the primary audible melody or harmony.

On one level, it's a total audiophile album. But it's also got a bit of a built-in easter egg for obsessive fans with crap gear, which I think is cute and funny.

I wonder how much of a role that plays in making this cover work. The first little while I was listening to it, it was like "Well, I don't remember that sound — but then for all I know maybe it's been there all along and I just never paid attention...."
posted by nebulawindphone at 2:57 PM on June 2, 2012 [4 favorites]


Ardiril: "Soundcloud's streaming compresses the shit out of a file. The download is the original file."

It's not the streaming audio that's compressed, it's just the waveform image. I've noticed this with Soundcloud for a while now.
posted by dunkadunc at 4:21 PM on June 2, 2012


ok, the whole OMG SO LOUD train of conversation has been all over bizarre and hilarious, but the funniest part has been this: "and not the coked-up music industry people that have already moved to a different town" - like a stereotype straight from an 80s after school special. what's next, will the kids be driven to punk?
posted by nadawi at 5:00 PM on June 2, 2012 [5 favorites]


nadawi, I want a poster of that .jpg.
posted by en forme de poire at 5:20 PM on June 2, 2012 [3 favorites]


I'm talking about permanently damaging the hearing of young people, just like Kevin Shields did to his own hearing

I have spent time with my head right next to the speakers. I have spent time dancing so hard I would pissed blood afterwards. I'm 50 years old. I have mild tinnitus. My Achilles tendons are fucked, and I have incipient arthritis in my ankle joints.

It was worth it.
posted by flabdablet at 12:11 AM on June 3, 2012 [4 favorites]


you've made this whole thread about "it's too loud for colie" and I think it's fine for you to make your point once, but I think it's frankly shallow as a criticism and I'm finding it tiresome.

I promise to stop the loudness comments after this (and incidentally I do not suffer from tinnitus myself). I wouldn't have started it if Shields was not 49 and a tinnitus sufferer himself. I respect those who like the music, but I find attitudes to this issue

But in the UK there are laws around the level of sound you can safely expose customers to in venues, just like tobacco and fire exits and so on (there are also the people that work there to consider). Putting 5,000 people in a room means you have to take their welfare seriously. But the common situation I understand from talking to people who do it for a living is that the band will always want these broken, and their management will insist to the promoter that they won't play if the levels are observed but will demand full payment. After a bit of chat, everyone gets to avoid the responsibility of being the one who has set the volume at illegal levels.

Enjoy the music but with 15 pound earplugs in, everybody!

:-)
posted by colie at 1:24 AM on June 3, 2012


I get the impression that more and more people are wearing earplugs at gigs in recent years. Might just be the kind of gigs I go to - DIY punk, hardcore, doom etc - but it's definitely quite common. Can't speak for more mainstream indie or rock shows.

20 years ago I would never have dreamed of doing it - one thing that's changed I think is that the technology has moved on from sticking a piece of foam in your ear.

Seeing MBV live was one of the most incredible music experiences I've had, and the noise level was a major part of that. It felt like you weren't so much hearing the music as bathing in it. I take Colie's point about bass though - I used to go to a dub night in a basement where it felt like someone was kicking you in the chest. When everything but the bassline dropped out you could hear a weird rattling noise. It was beer glasses shaking on the shelf round the edge of the room. But I never had my ears ring the next day from it.

Back on topic, I'm finding the recreation unsettling - a kind of uncanny valley I-know-what-it-is-but-it's-not-quite-right feeling.
posted by spectrevsrector at 6:29 AM on June 3, 2012 [1 favorite]


Pinback: ".... Anyone remember the knock-off compilations record companies used to crank out using a bunch of session musos to almost, but not quite, perfectly cover Top-40 hits? Where the song name and original artist appeared prominently in the track listing on the back, but with "performed by …" hidden somewhere else on the sleeve? Records I'm sure were deliberately made to be bought by well-meaning oldies and proudly presented to unsuspecting teenage relatives for birthdays or christmas?

As the occasional recipient of those from my grandmothers and aunts, this immediately transports my mind to a weird place where technical appreciation, a sense of futility, disappointment, and fremdschämen meet
"

It's still going on...
posted by Xoder at 10:35 AM on June 4, 2012


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