Any time a new bit of music streaming software arrives, i have 3 simple tests. Here, you can see how Spotify does. These are tests that can be applied to any record collection, download site or ipod. Any device or service failing to fulfil the following criteria are, in essence, fundamentally flawed.
TEST 1:Q. Can i listen to Frank Zappa?
A. No. I can listen to a Jefferson Airplane featuring Zappa in the songwriter credits, but that's as close as spotify can bring me to the finest composer of the last century. As far as my requirements go, Spotify is off to a bad start. SCORE : 1/10
TEST 2:Q. Can i listen to Tool?
A. Not even a little. Tool are pretty picky when it comes to making music available online, and Spotify does nothing to change this. The biog on site is quite good though, and comes with a selection of pretty pictures of 4 funny lookin men, so i'll give it a couple of points for that. SCORE : 2/10
TEST 3: Q. Can i listen to the Baywatch Theme tune with vocals?
A. Here, spotify scores 5 out of 10. There are several version of the Baywatch theme tune available, but all are instrumental, omitting the wonderful vocal delivery in favour of a parps and toots. All in all, the versions available are good, but not great. SCORE : 6/10
depeche mode's new album "sounds of the universe" has leaked, and it's also sounding rather good. even the bonus remixes are all over the newsgroups! the version i've grabbed is supposedly a 320kbps rip, but it sounds more like a 128 re-encoded. listenable for now, but my inner audiophile is desperate for the real deal. still, album sounds like the best for a while, and i'm looking forward to seeing them in december even more.
the forthcoming Modeselektor & Apparat album "Moderat" is also getting me pretty excited. theres one track availabe to stream on pitchfork so far, and it sounds great. check it oot.
in other news, i've unleashed my Touch N' Go! project upon the world. check it out here (link fixed) its the best music ever recorded, or at least, Mickey Touch told me to tell you that. He's a bit of a gimp, but his heart is in the right place. yes, its in his chest.
Been busy enjoying some freedom from the mac after 6 months of recording, mixing, editing etc, but now i've ascended to the dizzy heights of "entry level ipod touch owner" i can blog about music wherever there is wifi!
Everything is going tits-up at EMI, but at least they've finally done something good with the Radiohead catalogue.
As of monday, you can own 2CD+DVD editions of "Pablo Honey", "The Bends" and, my personal favourite, "OK Computer". Unlike the cash-cow box set released a couple of years ago, which was basically the Radiohead EMI catalogue repackaged in digipak format and shoved in a box, these reissues contain a plethora of goodies. Sure, Radiohead die-hards will already own pretty much everything on here, but now they can own it AGAIN! IN A FANCY BOX!
So what are you getting for your appropriate currency? All the b-sides from the associated singles from each album, additional live/session material, and a DVD filled with live performances, the "Meeting People Is Easy" documentary, and various other audio/visual delights. They look the business, they're full of excellent material, and they kinda draw a line under what EMI can do to exploit the band. LOL.
So, as surprising as it seems, it looks like EMI are doing something right in the face of utter failure. Well done! Nick Cave re-issues to follow, although they've been delayed until next month, perhaps to give next months revenue sheets a bit of a boost...
I love The Knife. I love Karin and Olof. They have an uncanny ability to make the simple seem sublime. They dress up beautiful music in sinister clothes, and do so with a level of panache that seems ludicrous in the internet age of dissection and mockery. They do what they do very, very well.
Which is why i'm so excited by the forthcoming album from Karin Dreijer Andersson. The debut album from her solo project Fever Ray will hit record stores at the end of this month, and is available on i-tunes right now. And i'm happy to report that is doesn't disappoint. The overall tone is as dark as anything from Silent Shout, the instrumentation is as warm and bouncy as anything from Deep Cuts. It's another great record from the house of Dreijer.
1-0 to Karin. Olof, how about an album of minimal techno? That would be just lovely.