OK Go's latest video for their new song "I Won't Let You Down" is as always, a great video with interesting choreography mixing modern dance numbers with stuff often seen in old musicals and then goes kind of nuts at the end.
The Pipe Guy is a 10min medley of songs played on PVC pipes with flip-flops by a busker at a mall that is so good I can't stop playing it over and over.
Poolside Radio is a bizarre slice of the 1980s in a browser. Strange old clips of 80s movies combined with 80s synth music and a lovely pastel palette make for a good time.
Amazon just announced AutoRip, a service to provide MP3 versions of any song you buy on CD from their store. That's all well and good, but the kicker is that "Amazon is retroactively giving free MP3s to any customer who has purchased an AutoRip compatible CD since its Music Store first opened in 1998". Looks like I'll be knee deep in Blink 182, Cake, and The Spin Doctors again.
The most important article you'll ever read about the Jonas Brothers which smartly breaks down the extreme disconnect between their message, their medium, and how hot foam spray guns figure into the conservative culture wars.
Elbow's video for their song One Day Like This is pretty simple, but you'd be surprised how much a nice song and some slow motion can make something totally awesome. [more inside]
A-Ha's Take on Me, but done literally with lyrics changed to describe what was happening in the video, instead of the head-scratcher of a 80s video having nothing to do with the song. Also? A-ha still exists and the lead singer still looks the same. This meme of doing new lyrics to go with old videos is novel, previously people made videos to match the lyrics literally.
The video for Naive New Beaters' song "Live Good" has a mind-blowing amount of green-screen going on, to good effect.
This lip sych of Flagpole Sitta is all kinds of awesome. An old favorite made new again by the office staff of Collegehumor et al in one take. It's a little slow to start, but it hits pure joy by the end.
Musicast turns your iTunes (mac only) into a music sharing server that conveniently spits out a podcast feed for your friends to subscribe and download all your mp3s from. Download this quick before
the RIAA kills the server something might happen to this wonderful app.
An awesome short commercial (quicktime) that's a sort of visual music mashup from a DJ equipment company. [via tween, a cool video effects blog]
If you liked the Kleptones and other posts about mashups, you might have caught "raiding the 20th century" in early 2004. Well, DJ Food has completely updated it for 2005 and now clocks in at a full 59 minutes of monster mashup mix madness. Download the mp3 here and enjoy the eclectic sonic landscape.
OK go's video for their song "A Million Ways" looks as low budget and as simple as it could be. Four members in a backyard, one camera on a tripod, and they simply dance. But I have to say it's one of my favorite music videos of the last few years. Direct link to high quality 16Mb quicktime, lower quality versions on their site [via 37s]
You like-a da mashups? Here, I give you mashups (about 40 of them to be exact).
A couple years ago, they did SILENCE! the musical version of Silence of the lambs, now they're working on "RoboCop The Musical" with this track uploaded as a preview entitled "Murphy, It's You" performed by RoboCop and Anne Lewis.
Your favorite band's website sucks. I can't count the number of times I've wanted to share a band's great new tracks with friends over email and had to give them detailed instructions on how to navigate the flash popup (ok, first click on the band's launch panel, then look in the popup for something marked "sounds" then click that and click the stream button...what? you don't have the latest flash?), or if I love a band's music, I can't seem to find their tour dates even though I know they're on the road. Merlin drops the five golden rules for bands that do too good of a job keeping their fans from their music.
Grey Video: a further experimental mashup (this time, in video) of the Beatles and Jay Z, for the DJ Dangermouse song Encore. Looks almost as slick as the old Weezer Happy Days video by Spike Jonze.
"This site was created with one goal; to create the most comprehensive online archive of information and digital photos of the Coventry Vermont Phish show, August 14th and 15th 2004." Seems odd to think folks went to the trouble of dedicating an entire website to just a single concert, until you learn it was the very last one for Phish.
iPod vs. Cassette Tape: a comparitive study in pictures.
After 14 years of highly successful nationwide tours that began the trend of the multi-stage, summer super rock fest, Lollapalooza 2004 has been cancelled due to low ticket sales. I went to a 1991 show, and attended half a dozen other similar fests in the past ten years, but as I've gotten older I've become a bigger fan of the intimate club vs. the gigantic rock festival. Still, Lollapalooza being cancelled comes as a shock, especially considering the stellar line-up on both stages.
9 beet stretch is the act of using digital tools to slow down Beethoven's 9th symphony to the point where the piece takes 24 hours to complete. Next week, a 9 beet stretch will be taking place in San Francisco, at 964 Natoma, from Friday April 23rd to Saturday April 24. Sleepover!
You know how some songs are really catchy and you wonder if the hooks could be engineered to make people like the song? A company called Polyphonic HMI has created software they call "Hit Song Science" which is supposed to contain algorithms that determine if a song is likely to be a hit. The company is touting their first attempt at using HSS in the marketplace as a success. [via furdlog]
Muted Tones is a collaborative music project where a different "curator" picks out ten minutes of their own music once a month, and after seven months they have a full CD-sized collection of content (complete with blog posts by curators as well). The first one is done and they're almost done with the second one. There's a lot of variety and great artists I've never heard of in the mixes. It's sort of a public CD swap that anyone can listen in on and
it's probably totally illegal it's really cool.
MacBand has just launched and looks like the perfect fit for budding Garageband musicians. The site hosts songs you've created in Garageband and everything's under a Creative Commons license, so music collaboration with loops, samples, and whole songs from people you've never met will be possible on this new community.
This (windows media) movie taken from a French variety show is pretty cool/kooky/amazing. It's a guy wearing a suit covered in small horns, all honking different keys, and he can play the classics by jumping around and hiting the right notes.
Make this year's xmas a special one by buying the Flavor Flav Talking Alarm Clock with five alarm phrases "Bass In Your Face, Get Up Get Down, Yo G Yo, Yeaa Boy." Have you seen any other similarly bizarre gifts on sale this holiday season?
If you've bought one of BMG's new copy-protected CDs, remember to hold down the shift key while loading it into your PC. That one keystorke will let you be free to rip, mix, and burn it.
And so it begins: while I've already seen half a dozen "best ___ of 2002" lists, the year end list I look forward to, Pitchfork's Top 50 Albums list is out for 2002. It's just the right mix between "so mainstream there are no surprises" and "so indie even your second cousin's girlfriend's brother in that band hasn't heard of them" though perhaps they're leaning towards the latter this year, seeing how I've only heard about a quarter of all the albums listed.
Kurt Cobain's childhood is home for sale on eBay. "The inspiration for lyrics of many of his songs were derived from life in Montesano during these early teen years." [thanks spotmeter]
The audiogalaxy/RIAA suit has been settled, with the result being that all content on the audiogalaxy system is now "opt-in" by the original artist/copyright holders only with the rest filtered out (earlier story of the initial filing).
Bob Mould on wrestling, the internet, and mp3s. With his first new album in years coming out, Bob's got a new outlook that's different than the old open taping/bootleg philosophy. Since he's distributing his own work, and paying for it all, you're taking money out of his hands, so he's going with the honor system. Is the value of music really going down, or will Bob have no problem finding people to pay for it?
Lego isn't just for geeks anymore. The latest video directed by Michel Gondry for the White Stripes melds lego with rock in a wonderful way that just has to be seen.
Music CDs sales are down, coinciding with Napster's decline. Personally, I haven't bought a new CD in months because I no longer have a source for finding new music (what I used Napster for mainly). I suppose word of mouth and listening to online streams may help, but nothing compared to finding songs you liked on Napster, and searching others' files with similar tastes and finding new gems. Do you think the RIAA will notice this and change, or is control of distribution more important to them?
Teenpeople.com premiering a new Sisqo single (press release too) seems like another example of media conglomerate cross-marketing. You can hear an entire song from a new album 2 months before release on a single website, before even radio or MTV gets it, but why is one corporation using another for an exclusive distribution channel? Are things like this and Madonna selling tickets exclusively through AOL going to remain experimental in nature or is it the face of things to come?
IBM, with the latest attempt to put the genie back in the bottle. Their fatal flaw is betting on a post-napster world, though I bet their EMMS technology gets cracked before that ever happens.
Odd website of the day: Kween. Kween is a Queen tribute band, but not just any tribute band, they're "Japan's Best Queen Cover Band" (Best? You mean there are others?). They've certainly got the look and a pretty good sound. The photos of the band in action are amazing. You better catch them soon though, as they're breaking up on the 10 year anniversary of Freddy Mercury's passing.
There's nothing sadder than a dead midget (rapper).
I was flooded with retro-memories of Commodore 64 music at c64audio.com. I distinctly remember playing boulderdash and hearing this for hours.
mp3.com ordered to pay Universal $118 million for copying CDs to the Mymp3 service, a service designed for owners of those CDs (mp3.com made distribution agreements with the other record labels trying to sue). On the flip side, Yahoo scored a deal with the RIAA to let them webcast music. It's a wacky week in online music [via davenetics].
Napster Says RIAA Trying to Stifle Technology. Aw yeah, it's nice to see Napster get on the offensive. Armed with data showing that CD sales have increased with the rise in mp3 trading, Napster is now alleging that record companies are against the software because it reduces their 100% control of the music distribution business. But will a court allow Napster to go on while their users walk the fair-use tightrope?
You probably didn't know this site existed, and that it's as useful as dictionary.com and thesarus.com. The Rhymezone is quick to become the poet and songwriter's killer app. I wish it had better dictionary integration though.
Yahoo released their mp3/CD/other media player today, complete with skins. How long until there is a Yahoo! browser?
Although this story doesn't sound like much, the FTC coming down on Time Warner, the effects could be great. Time Warner has agreed to ban their minimum pricing on featured new CDs, admitting that for the last seven years, these compact discs have been artificially overpriced. Do you think making CDs cheaper for the first time in years had anything to do with all the attention mp3s have been getting from consumers?
Another music artist that doesn't get it: Dr. Dre. I knew the Metallica thing could start a rash of followers, hopefully this isn't a trend. Why is it so difficult for artists to see that fans trading their music is a good thing? (including better sales of discs thanks to the people hearing the mp3's and better concert sales from fans buying tickets to see them live)
WTF!?! Everyone's favorite band (back in high school) Metallica is suing Napster and a handful of universities
WTF!?! Everyone's favorite band (back in high school) Metallica is suing Napster and a handful of universities for unlawful trading of their music. This is ridiculous, and I hope it doesn't set a precedence. If anyone would just slap a revenue model on napster so artists could get paid for their work, none of this piracy crap would happen. And Metallica, what about the other apps that do the same thing, are you going to sue them too? And what about every other band on earth? What do you expect to get out of universities, tighter controls over bandwidth, or student monitoring of internet usage? What about every cable modem and DSL provider that lets people use Napster, are you going after them too? Why don't you sue everyone on earth that's heard your songs but didn't pay for them? Side question: Is it better to burn out or fade away?
I love geek-rock. Weird Al is releasing his concert footage on DVD, and of course it will have all sorts of techy-loving extras like lyrics, extra movies, and 5.1 sound.
I don't know why, but I can't get enough of Brazillian music (realvideo stream). Not that I can understand a word of it, but damn that's smooth. Note to self: buy more Gilberto Gil records. This person thinks this disc is one of his best, and you can even download digital versions of it from cdnow, although I wonder why each cut is $2.49. Why on earth should digital music cost more? There's no shipping, no customer service hassles, no media to stock in a warehouse. Make the entire disc $5 in digital format, and I'll buy his entire collection (and save from adding to my already loaded down cd rack at home).
While we're still mulling over possible country-wide internet taxes in the states, the European Union is proposing a digital sales tax on any downloads of music, software, or videos from outside the Europe. It's just a proposal though, we'll have to wait and see if it actually goes through.
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