All posts in music

Important Photo of the Day: Fleetwood Mac, 1977

photo by sam emerson

Running Up That Hill Documentary

Thanks to Stereogum for the heads up.

David Grubbs, Records Ruin the Landscape: John Cage, the Sixties, and Sound Recording


“What does it mean to describe a recording as being of a moment in which it did not circulate? Conversely, what does it mean to describe previously inaccessible music as participating in a later moment in which it resonates more powerfully?” Sign up to get notified when the book is ready to order. From the Duke Press about the book:

John Cage’s disdain for records was legendary. He repeatedly spoke of the ways in which recorded music was antithetical to his work. In Records Ruin the Landscape, David Grubbs argues that, following Cage, new genres in experimental and avant-garde music in the 1960s were particularly ill suited to be represented in the form of a recording. These activities include indeterminate music, long-duration minimalism, text scores, happenings, live electronic music, free jazz, and free improvisation. How could these proudly evanescent performance practices have been adequately represented on an LP?

In their day, few of these works circulated in recorded form. By contrast, contemporary listeners can encounter this music not only through a flood of LP and CD releases of archival recordings but also in even greater volume through Internet file sharing and online resources. Present-day listeners are coming to know that era’s experimental music through the recorded artifacts of composers and musicians who largely disavowed recordings. In Records Ruin the Landscape, Grubbs surveys a musical landscape marked by altered listening practices.

Read more at The Wire.

Regional Listening Trends


Read the article that accompanies this amazing glimpse into how listening habits and preferences vary regionally – fascinating work!

Nico Muhly’s Loving Review of Beyonce


“In the strange video, Beyoncé walks out of her apartment past some Dickensian children who turn out to be paparazzi. There is a straight couple (of which the man is actually a gay I know from my gym) making out in what I presume to be TriBeCa. Then I can’t figure it out — it looks like she goes to meet a man in a hoodie on the Upper East Side, which can’t be true, because nobody would ever wear a hoodie on the Upper East Side. I love this song.”

Read the whole thing, please.

Kronos on Sesame Street

It sometimes works that way.

And Now, Pandora’s Algorithms

“It’s becoming quite apparent to us that the world of playing the perfect music to people and the world of playing perfect advertising to them are strikingly similar,” says Eric Bieschke, Pandora’s chief scientist.

“Listen to Pandora, and It Listens Back”

Capo 3: Reverse Engineering Rock ‘n Roll


Capo 3 is a fun looking iOS application that takes a ‘song to note’ approach towards learning to play the music in your iTunes library. Pull in almost any kind of audio file, and let the app show you note by note how to play. You can even slow it down without sacrificing pitch. Looks fun!

ISO50: Orange Catalog


ISO50 dug up some cool photos of vintage Orange catalogs. So gorgeous!

Arca’s “&&&&”

Thanks to The Fox is Black for tipping me off to “&&&&”, a wonderful mixtape by Arca, the artist behind some of my favorite tracks on Yeezus. You must listen.

Video: Neil Young Finds Bootleg in 1971

Neil Young finds a gem record shopping in 1971 and talks to clerk who has no clue who he is. Thanks, YouTube!

“Neil finds a bootleg recording of a live CSNY show and confronts the store employee who has no idea who he is. At first, Neil is looking for the new Bob Dylan album “Greatest Hits Vol. 2″ but finds a bootleg Dylan album instead. He then discovers a Crosby & Nash and a CSNY bootleg as well.”

Boards of Canada “Reach for the Dead”

Video: Balmorhea “Pyrakantha”

Balmorhea – Pyrakantha [official] from Colin Kennedy on Vimeo.

Really good Tortoise vibes from these Austin friends.

Video: Leonard Bernstein on the Future of Music

“I also believe, along with Keats, that the poetry of Earth is never dead, as long as spring succeeds winter and man is there to perceive it.”

Stump’s Faerie’s Aire and Death Waltz


Stump’s impossible piano composition happens to look beautiful on paper. Here’s an estimation of what it should sound like … and a particularly talented human making an attempt. No one knows much about John Stump, reach out to me if you have any leads, I’m fascinated.

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