Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Aggregate me, baby!

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  • Richard Wain,

    Damian's right about iTunes, it's DRM-crippled over-priced crap that's there not for music lovers but to help sell iPods.

    Damian's wrong on this though:

    show me a music lover who doesn't download mp3s via p2p and I'll show you a music lover who hasn't heard of p2p

    like sure I've heard of it, I just don't bother, if I like something I'll buy it - why settle for a crappy MPwhatever (Apple etc) file if you really like music? I'd rather have a CD (or an SACD or 24-bit CD or whatever - but CD's all right. vinyl's better!)

    this is a good link on the whole thing, courtesy of Dubber's excellent New Music Strategies mailing thingy:

    http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/newmusicstrategies/~3/54263349/

    "The average 128kbps mp3 file — still apparently the most common compression ratio — contains about an eleventh of the data that was on the original CD. In other words, ten times as much audio information has been thrown away than has been kept. This is not an argument for audiophiles — even the most casual observer can tell the difference"

    Apple's only real innovation with music is their filing systems (the iPod wheel and the whatchucallit home organiser thingy) - fat files must be the way forward: no DRM, nice sound quality. then I won't have to buy the whole CD to get the songs I want (and yes I'm aware there are a very few innovative sites who do this already - I'll get there eventually!)

    Since Nov 2006 • 143 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    I agree with you Richard but the commercial reality is that most people simply don't care that much. If it sound ok-ish...its fine. Sad but true...30 years ago people used to play their LPs on those stacker things quite happily.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3215 posts Report Reply

  • Danyl Mclauchlan,

    why settle for a crappy MPwhatever (Apple etc) file if you really like music? I'd rather have a CD (or an SACD or 24-bit CD or whatever - but CD's all right. vinyl's better!)

    A couple of months ago I was looking for a CD recommended to me by a friend. I strolled into Real Groovy and asked if they had a copy in stock.

    'Sorry', they said, 'but we can order it in from the states. It'll cost about $120 and take three to four weeks. Is that okay?'

    '__Huh__,' I thought to myself. '__I could do that. Or I could just go home and download it myself for free in about an hour__.'

    You know there's something horribly wrong with your business model when your customers are faced with a choice like that.

    You ARE still stealing though. So I'll happily pay for music and download it online. My ears aren't sophisticated enough to tell the difference between a CD and an mp3 file and it's way more convenient than wandering around a bunch of music stores trying to find what I want.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 902 posts Report Reply

  • bob daktari,

    as a child I eagerly awaited the arrival of mcdonalds in the south island - that wait (at the time) was worth it

    itunes is not

    both are bad for you

    I reckon Apple is having a f__king laugh at NZ's expense - just launch ya coks

    Danyl, there's many a online store that will sell you what you seek and freight into NZ. They are quicker, cheaper and have none of the attitude or ignornace of our music stores and their staff here

    auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 364 posts Report Reply

  • David Rush,

    "people used to play their LPs on those stacker things quite happily"...true (and the stacker thing was great for 45s). I once had close to a religious experience listening to an old Sam and Dave record on an circa 60s sterogram. The (valve) distortion was a thing of beauty.

    Agree with the frustration over getting obscure or not popular items from stores like RG. When I was still in NZ I ordered most of my vinyl from Forced Exposure. Even with the freight charges it was still cheaper and faster than getting it from a physical store. For digital downloads, I find Beatport hard to beat, 320 kbps MP3s with no DRM. Soulseek also rocks.

    Since Nov 2006 • 10 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    Can someone tell me in a nutshell what DRM is?

    Boing Boing keep going on about it, but I haven't picked up what it's all about.

    Wikipedia gives me a handy choice of 13 DRM acronyms to choose from.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1878 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    Digital Rights Management...its basically the record companies trying to control the use and distribution of their copyrights..it sucks. I'm far too tired to go into it in detail...best go here

    But suffice to sa its a reasonably good indication of why major record companies are in big trouble.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3215 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    . For digital downloads, I find www.beatport.com hard to beat, 320 kbps MP3s with no DRM. Soulseek also rocks.

    My music buying behaviour this year has been influenced quite a lot by emusic.com. Not only is it much cheaper than buying CDs, it's leading me to some good stuff - and, again, it's DRM-free high-bitrate MP3s. I'm actually not sure yet how much shopping I'll do with iTunes, but I'm not likely to drop my emusic sub.

    BTW, I was pleased to discover that emusic.com has the new Fuckpony EP. Thanks for the tip on that one, Simon. Young people these days just don't know what house music is any more, mutter, grumble, etc ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 19116 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    I've just realised that I actually use YouTube for discovering a lot of new music. Often I'll read about some cool new song, and then I'll head over to YouTube and watch the video. I also use it to listen to old songs, to make sure they were actually as awesome as my memory claims they are (often they're not).

    And then, should I be sufficiently pleased by what I've heard on YouTube, I'll go in search of a higher quality version of the song, either as a download or a CD.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1878 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    Young people these days just don't know what house music is any more, mutter, grumble, etc ...

    Ha ha, yes...my daughter (12) thinks my taste in music (aside from The Beatles which she and her mates all love) sucks.

    I actually think its been a hell of a year for new music and reissues of old stuff. I've been looking at a best of for my blog and its been quite inspiring...

    And talking of emusic and House, there was a huge swag of classic early Chicago stuff on their, Fingers Inc and Marshall Jefferson and the like. Frankie Knuckles "Your Love" but it seems to have gone, which is a shame.. But I just found the new Andy Weatherall there, and that is a killer! I have it on vinyl but I need it for my iPod so...

    Oh and one more thing totally unrelated but mentioned way back...how on earth do Warners get away with retailing the 4 CD Flying Nun set for $150+ !! What a scam....

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3215 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Oh and one more thing totally unrelated but mentioned way back...how on earth do Warners get away with retailing the 4 CD Flying Nun set for $150+ !! What a scam....

    I think the packaging is pretty expensive. I gather it costs them $90 to produce.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 19116 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    I think the packaging is pretty expensive. I gather it costs them $90 to produce.

    perhaps, but there is a certain irony in seeing The Pin Group and such in such surroundings. It feels like a 180 degree twist from where FN started from.

    Then again so was Fiona MacDonald who is conspicuous in her absence, especailly when one consdires that FMR / FN probably spent more on her than most of the rest of these records combined.

    That said, its a tasty must have package (and Amplifier have it for $120) (and as a plug!!! have just put a bunch of my old records up too..Features / Suburban Reptiles / Screaming Meemees etc..more to come)

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3215 posts Report Reply

  • David Rush,

    My music buying behaviour this year has been influenced quite a lot by emusic.com.

    eMusic: Where Are the Copycats?

    Since Nov 2006 • 10 posts Report Reply

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