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50FootWave is seeking new earballs.
December 16, 2005 6:50 AM   Subscribe

50FootWave is seeking new earballs. "We thought it'd be interesting to ask for your energy & enthusiasm rather than your money and see what happens. To that end, please share this music in any and every way you see fit. Burn CDs, post the mp3s, seed Torrents -- whatever's comfortable for you. It's an experiment. Who knows how it will go? Wheee!" [via]
posted by YurikoKinje (45 comments total)

 
Am I supposed to know this artist/band? Nowhere on the site (or in the FPP for that matter) does it say what genre of music it is.

I really can't be bothered to download it and find out for myself. Sorry. (And sorry if this seems snarky, too.)
posted by sveskemus at 6:55 AM on December 16, 2005


I, on the other hand, can be bothered to download it, and will do so when I get home. Just, you know, saying.
posted by odinsdream at 6:58 AM on December 16, 2005


The via information tells you who the band is, sveskemus, but if you can't be bothered to read it: 50FootWave is Kristin Hersh's (formerly of Throwing Muses) current band.
posted by terrapin at 6:58 AM on December 16, 2005


Sveskemus, I'm with you. Free music online. Yawn.
posted by thirteenkiller at 6:58 AM on December 16, 2005


It's the old-skool new-wave post-rock sound, influenced by Peruvian banjo ragtime raga.
posted by Protocols of the Elders of Awesome at 6:58 AM on December 16, 2005


Earballs?

If they wanted me to share it via torrent, they should have put one up to begin with. Sloooow.
posted by prostyle at 7:03 AM on December 16, 2005


If it sucks, you'll be getting my bill.
posted by HTuttle at 7:06 AM on December 16, 2005


No problem, we have that cheque made out and ready to mail to you Mr. Buttle. If you could just sign this form...
posted by YurikoKinje at 7:11 AM on December 16, 2005


Cool.
posted by hackly_fracture at 7:14 AM on December 16, 2005


What happens? What happens is that their site is so fucking slow that I don't even care about the music.
posted by klangklangston at 7:18 AM on December 16, 2005


Wow. THAT was really dramatically different from everything else done in the past 45 years but with a crappier whiny female singer.

Rock is dead. Bury it and move the fuck ON already!
posted by HTuttle at 7:25 AM on December 16, 2005


earballs. heh.
posted by delmoi at 7:27 AM on December 16, 2005


Bury it and move the fuck ON already!

To, um ... what?
posted by ZenMasterThis at 7:28 AM on December 16, 2005


Rock isn't dead. Genre is dead.
posted by Protocols of the Elders of Awesome at 7:37 AM on December 16, 2005


Dead is Dead, long live living!
posted by blue_beetle at 7:40 AM on December 16, 2005


I've actually been a fan of 50 Foot for a while - this is great stuff. (If you like the Throwing Muses / Belly etc...)
posted by quibx at 7:46 AM on December 16, 2005


Both dead and living are dead. The Undead is hot now, but I liked them before they were cool.
posted by The White Hat at 7:47 AM on December 16, 2005


Paging jonmc, music thread on aisle four...
posted by fixedgear at 7:50 AM on December 16, 2005


I've been working on a tool to let webmasters know when internet users disdainfully didn't click on a link.
posted by jon_kill at 7:53 AM on December 16, 2005 [1 favorite]


Bitter comments make the sweetest music.
posted by furtive at 7:58 AM on December 16, 2005



posted by MrMoonPie at 8:07 AM on December 16, 2005


To, um ... what?
To Humppa.
posted by Wolfdog at 8:10 AM on December 16, 2005


Human rock might be dead, but the animals and birds are keeping the faith. Try Hatebeak.

Ms. Hersh isn't really my cup of tea, but I know a good few unreconstructed indie boys who'll be glad to hear they can listen to her latest efforts for free.
posted by jack_mo at 8:17 AM on December 16, 2005


earballs yeah.. wihtnot
posted by vincente at 8:34 AM on December 16, 2005


Nice to see this quickly turned into a trainwreck. "Why?", you may ask.

The via information tells you who the band is, sveskemus, but if you can't be bothered to read it: 50FootWave is Kristin Hersh's (formerly of Throwing Muses) current band.

How f'ing hard is it to put that info in the FPP itself?
posted by mkultra at 9:17 AM on December 16, 2005


mkultra: The information was also in the tags. How f'ing hard is it for someone to read before snarking?
posted by terrapin at 9:28 AM on December 16, 2005


unreconstructed indie boys *sheepishly stands up*

Yeah, I am enjoying it. I still have a little, irrational crush on Ms. Hersh, nutjob though she may be. Thanks, YurikoKinje!
posted by everichon at 9:34 AM on December 16, 2005


State is dead. It's all about transition and interstice now.

I tell you, kids these past few minutes. When I was young, oh, hours ago, things were pretty different, I can tell you.
posted by freebird at 9:36 AM on December 16, 2005


Back on topic, and after having had a chance to view the site, I think it is pretty cool that they are making their music available in FLAC format. It is also cool that they are encouraging fans to not only download it, but to share it whatever way they want (including posting to a site where people will rag on them). Sure there are plenty of ways to get "free" music on the 'Net, and this isn't exactly new, but I am still impressed when musicians "get it" and seemed more interested in sharing their music than using a big corporation like Sony, and having them use shady methods to prevent fans from hearing the music.

Personally I was not a huge fan of Kristin Hersh's previous stuff, but that doesn't mean I can't appreciate that others may. It also doesn't mean I won't check out her new band's music and see what it sounds like before deciding whether it sucks or not.
posted by terrapin at 9:53 AM on December 16, 2005


Now that this FPP has completely gone to shit, let me make a vain and hopeless attempt to rescue a tiny bit of it by putting the post in context.

Kristin Hersh's previous band, Throwing Muses, broke up in the mid-90s. The reason? They simply ran out of money, deciding that touring and recording was too much of a financial burden to continue. Despite a large cult audience born and bred on college rock of the late 80s, the band never sold enough records to survive. To this day, the Muses enjoy the benefits of this cult status; they're nowhere near Pixies-level worship, but the recent one-off reunion album in 2002 was well-received, easily one of the band's loudest releases yet.

Meanwhile, Hersh had started a solo career and a small music publishing business called Throwing Music. In a stylistic 180, her solo material was stripped-down acoustic folk, which brought in an entirely new audience of fans. More to the point, though, was that while Hersh's solo material was still released through her old record label, 4AD, Throwing Music began to take greater prominence behind the scenes. Hersh was one of the first artists to sell an album via the internet in the form of MP3s, the overlooked but highly regarded Murder, Misery, and Then Goodnight. An album of Appalachian folk covers was never going to do well on the store shelves; as an MP3 release, Hersh didn't have to worry about the logistics of selling in retail, and probably made her money back on the project.

50 Foot Wave is Hersh's latest band, created after the reunion Throwing Muses album. On the blog she maintains on the Throwing Music website, Hersh has repeatedly stated her support for people downloading her music, even going so far as to say that the Throwing Muses died because not enough people heard their stuff, and so whatever file-trading goes on of 50 Foot Wave's music is going to be a net gain for her band. The back of 50 Foot Wave's Golden Ocean even says "Share This Music."

There. You may continue discussing how rock is dead.
posted by chrominance at 9:58 AM on December 16, 2005 [1 favorite]


terrapin:

- Tags do not show up in RSS feeds.
- A tag that says "throwingmuses" still gives no indication of how it relates to the post. That's like saying you need to read the footnotes to understand the central concept. And unless your name is David Foster Wallace, that don't float.
posted by mkultra at 9:59 AM on December 16, 2005


mkultra: I'll assume you made sure to remind the people who post single-word links as well. Or the people who don't bother to inclludde any tags in their posts. Perhaps you can ask for a RSS tag pony from Matt?

However, the person who commented about not knowing who the musicians were, or what genre they played, obviously did not post from an RSS reader. They made the decision to make a comment wiithout looking at the links included or the tags the author included. My comment was snarky, but at least it also included the information they were apparently too lazy to look for (but still had time to type about).

The thread took a derail not because of my comment, but because off the people who can be counted on to come to a music thread simply to state they don't like the particular music. Well, then don't read the post, and don't comment. I am not sure wy *I* am the focus of your ire. I didn't write the post, and I certainly didn't declare rock dead or anything else.

I too use an RSS reader to see what is new to the site, and then IF something appeals to me, I click through, follow the links, read the article, etc. I realise that it is impossible to get everyone to post in a style that is uniform. If I don't understand what a post is about based one what is provided I either decide to avoid it, flag it, or follow the links and figure it out.
posted by terrapin at 10:12 AM on December 16, 2005


Chill, brother. I only quoted your response because it was the perfect illustration of why this was a poorly-worded post destined to turn out the way it did.
posted by mkultra at 10:53 AM on December 16, 2005


Wow. THAT was really dramatically different from everything else done in the comment section of a weblog.

Snark is dead. Bury it and move the fuck ON already!
posted by eener at 11:03 AM on December 16, 2005


And I respectfully disagree. I blame the people who declared that the musicians and their music suck, that rock is dead, and that any music they don't personally like requires a rude comment. The post had enough information in it to lead people to free music put out by musicians who get it.

Thanks YurikoKinje and chrominance.
posted by terrapin at 11:05 AM on December 16, 2005


I know it's not cool, but I always liked Tanya Donnelly better.
posted by mrgrimm at 12:22 PM on December 16, 2005


Take it to MeTa, motherfuckers.

METATALK.
posted by klangklangston at 12:42 PM on December 16, 2005


Anyone seen 50 Foot Wave live? Meant to a year or so back, but . . . you know . . .
posted by hackly_fracture at 12:58 PM on December 16, 2005


hackly_fracture: After chrominance's comments about how Throwing Muses broke up at least partially due to the expenses of touring, I wondered the same thing. The website says there are no dates set at this time, but Kristin Hersh is apparently on the road, so maybe they'll add some in the same cities. I also wonder what the band's rules are on recording their shows in light of their position on their LP. If they let folks record them, I'd be interested at what they sound like live. Doubt they'll get to Vermont anytime soon after all.

My apologies to mkultra, if I offended. It was unintentional.
As for klang, stay out from under the mistle toe, okay?

posted by terrapin at 1:42 PM on December 16, 2005


awesome...didn't radiohead say they were going to start doing this when their current contract is up?
cuz it'd be nice to get this sort of thing from a band that was, you know, relevant.

i always smile when people say rock is dead. rock is a phoenix; it dies every few years on principle alone.
posted by es_de_bah at 6:19 PM on December 16, 2005


Kristin Hersh is a gifted and dedicated musician who has been making music for quite a while, and who is deeply appreciated by a core of fans whether you care for her or not. Like most musicians, she doesn't think the world owes her a living, and all she seems to want here is to be heard by some new earballs (yergh, that was unfortunate) and at least not lose money, which is what happens to most independent musicians who try to produce their own records and tour.

At the very least, she deserves respect for making her music available freely and encouraging it to be shared. It takes a lot of goddamn work to make a well-crafted record, and she's hoping that anyone who cares about it will listen, share, and maybe donate if it's given them some pleasure.

Even if you don't give two shits or a tin whistle about her or the genre she works in, think about the implications for your favorite under-the-radar independent musicians, whatever their genre -- this is pretty much their only financially viable choice to distribute music, unless they manage to sell songs for advertising. If you're already jaded and yawning over musicians giving away their releases for free online, what's it going to take to appease you? Do musicians have to come to your house and hand you their records so you won't have to wait for a download, and while there whip you up some dinner and do a little light yard work?

Thanks for the link anyway, YurikoKinje, and especially to chrominance for filling in the the missing pieces of why this is good news.
posted by melissa may at 6:57 PM on December 16, 2005 [1 favorite]


The idea has at least worked on me. I had heard of Ms. Hersh's new band, but never checked it out until just now, so that's one more pair of earballs she's touched. For anybody curious to check out more of her music, the Throwing Muses album to look for is The Real Ramona, although if you're just downloading one song, make it "Bright Yellow Gun" from University. Of Hersh's solo material, Hips and Makers is her best, an acoustic album featuring "Your Ghost", a great duet with Michael Stipe.
posted by tublecain at 9:00 PM on December 16, 2005


terrapin: [...] the person who commented about not knowing who the musicians were, or what genre they played, obviously did not post from an RSS reader. They made the decision to make a comment wiithout looking at the links included or the tags the author included.

Yeah, sorry. I didn't think to see the kristinhersh tag and then go look her up on Wikipedia.

But I didn't "make the decision to make a comment without looking at the links included". The [via] link states that "50FootWave is Kristin Hersh’s current band". Period. That's not very much information.

chrominance's comment was great and would, copy-pasted and with a link to the free music, have been a better FPP than this was.

I didn't mean to ruin the thread. I only wanted to point out that a little more information might have been nice.
posted by sveskemus at 3:33 AM on December 17, 2005


chrominance's comment, I mean.

And after reading the Wikipedia entry and that comment I have downloaded the stuff and I actually think it's pretty good.

posted by sveskemus at 3:41 AM on December 17, 2005


Thank you, YurikoKinje. I feel fortunate to have seen some Throwing Muses shows way back, two stunning Kristin Hersh solo performances and saw 50 foot Wave a couple of years ago, which I can only describe as innocent, raccous abandon.
posted by xod at 3:08 PM on December 17, 2005


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