Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Halfway through '07 List

Alright, since we're a little past the halfway point of 2007, i'm a little curious to find out out people's top 5 albums of the year thus far:

My list (in order):

1. Kings of Leon--Because of the Times
2. Clap Your Hands Say Yeah!--Some Loud Thunder
3. Arcade Fire--Neon Bible
4. The White Stripes--Icky Thump
5. Wilco--Sky Blue Sky

Biggest Disappointments (in order):
1. Interpol--Our Love to Admire
2. Bright Eyes--Cassadega
3. Wilco--Sky Blue Sky (great album, but I expected something better than a great album. The back half is what kept it on the top five).

Most Anticipated for 2nd half:
1. Iron and Wine
2. Kanye West
3. Band of Horses
4. Stephen Malkmus (if it gets out in 2007)
5. Sigur Ros

Still undecided on:
1. Modest Mouse--We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank
2. Ryan Adams--Easy Tiger


Saturday, July 21, 2007

Album or Mixtape culture?

I was thinking today about the change that I see happening in music listening. It seems like a band has to work even more hard these days to hook a listener into an entire album.

Radio musicians and "artists" (or non-writing pretty faces, for long) know all about this from back in the day of us taping their stuff off the radio, but for the "indie" or even the "rock" genre (anything not considered pop), this is somewhat of a iTunes-created phenomenon.

Since we are now in the habit of celebrating SONGS rather than ALBUMS, this is probably something we need to discuss.

The first question that comes to mind is, "Is the music industry changing or are we?" I look back at my music collection (mentally) over the years and the things I remember are the great ALBUMS (Pedro's Winners Never Quit, Jawbreaker's Dear You, Nevermind, Weezer's Blue Album, The White Stripes' Elephant, etc). These are the albums where the Gestalt stands out - These albums in particular have the feel of being crafted when listened to, rather than sounding like an assortment of songs by a band. Not that we couldn't pick songs or hits off of these albums, but something is lost along the way. With recent subpar released from great bands (Stripes Satan, Killers Sam's Town, Interpol's new one) it seems like things may be changing to a more song focused culture.

The second thing I think about in respect to this topic is, "What is the purpose of the single?" In pop music, the single sells the album, and oftentimes is the only song listened to before the album is shelved. In the new iTunes culture, a "rock" band's hit will be downloaded exponentially more than the other songs on the album, depending on how "popular" the song becomes, especially if this song is featured on a TV or movie soundtrack (I'm thinking of The Fray's How to Save a Life which shot up iTunes' most downloaded chart after being featured on Grey's Anatomy, and many others). Music is becoming more pop culture influenced.

With 17 is Prime, the single (or chosen song) represents a band someone hasn't been exposed to, in order to give them something new to listen to. I think this represents the mixtape culture of yore as well. Instead of having a nauseating 30 minute conversation that consists of only questions ("Have you heard x?" "No...have you heard y?") like you're on freakin' "Whose Line." You hand them a mix CD, they listen, and they buy (or steal, or burn your copy like that's something different) what they like.

I'm beginning to ramble but I wanted to start the conversation of where you guys (and our reader) think the music scene is heading - especially in relation to iTunes and other song-centric downloading services.

I'm taking the side and defending the album. This is because not only do I want to listen to an entire album of a band, but I also want the bands that I listen to to record and compile more thoughtful albums.


Wednesday, July 11, 2007

7 is also Prime. 17 is Prime vol. 7

Number 7 has been spotted over several cities world-wide! It's almost as powerful as the almighty Allspark! Although, Megatron has nothing on this mix!

Sector 7 is watching. Beware while downloading.

Tracklist and contributors:

DL link in comments.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

HOLLA! 17 is Prime vol 6

Volume 6 is flashin' and shinin'!

Track listing and contributors:

01. Friday Night-Girl Talk-BW
02. Objects of My Obsession-Peter, Bjorn, and John-JH
03. Three MC's and One DJ (Live Video Version)-Beastie Boys-TH
04. Like Gold-Erlend Øye-JH
05. Fix Up, Look Sharp-Dizzee Rascal-TH
06. Diamond-Low-JH
07. Benzie Box (Featuring Cee-Lo)-Danger Doom-TH
08. Greed-Fugazi-DS
10. Mansion in The Sky-The Brian Jonestown Massacre-DS
11. You Can Look But You Better Not Touch-Monawing-JH
12. Cold Gold Diamond-Blitzen Trapper-BW
13. Pile of Gold-The Blow-BW
14. Destination Diamonds-Diamond Nights-BW
15. Shining Escalade-Hot Chip-BW
16. Jesus Gonna Build Me a Home-John Davis-DS
17. Stunna Glasses-N/A-BW

Link in Comments.