Choons

I've listened to some really rather decent music this week. Hopefully you did too, but if not, consider this your Friday playlist.

The Dears – Lost In The Plot
The Cure – A Strange Day (Live In Orange)
CHVRCHES – Down Side Of Me
Joy Division – Disorder
Ssleeping desiresS – We Need
Boy Harsher – Lust
Nine Inch Nails – With Teeth
Nine Inch Nails – Not Anymore
Fad Gadget – Love Parasite
Visage – Fade To Grey
The Soft Moon – We Are We
Depeche Mode – New Dress
Skinny Puppy – Rodent
Whitey – Saturday Night Ate Our Lives

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Classics

I've been listening to a lot of albums from my youth this week. Each one of these I originally owned on vinyl or cassette. There's some good stuff in here, consider this your playlist. You're welcome.

Adam And The Ants – Kings Of The Wild Frontier
The Cure – Disintegration
The Cure – The Head On The Door
Depeche Mode – Music For The Masses
Depeche Mode – Violator
The Human League – Dare
INXS – Shabooh Shoobah
The Mission – God's Own Medicine
Simple Minds – Live In The City Of Light
The Sisters Of Mercy – Floodland
Soft Cell – The Art Of Falling Apart
Tears For Fears – The Hurting
Thomas Dolby – The Golden Age Of Wireless

I still have my vinyl, but where are my cassettes? They did not survive one of the many moves over the years. That's a bit of a shame.

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last.fm Allowing Track Level Corrections

One of my peeves that you don't care about, is how Spotify 'helpfully' changes the track title on songs.

In my old age there's apparently no limit to my OCD when it comes to my music library. When I did "files in iTunes" like an animal, I carefully curated all the metadata and it was a music library of fucking amazement. My last.fm listening history stats bore that out.

Then I started streaming music like all the kids and it's been mostly fantastic. Trying to explain to Kevin Spencer aged 18 that this little black piece of glass in my hand has access to the entire world's music collection would result in utter disbelief.

But I digress.

So yeah, Spotify like to mostly add things like "Remastered 2014 Version" to song titles. Which I detest. Or as is the case with Tears For Fears' The Hurting album, rename Pale Shelter to "Pale Shelter – 2nd Single Version". Because reasons.

Good lord man, why do you even care?

Any last.fm'er will tell you that because the song title is different, it will be counted as a completely different song. And lo over the course of my streaming life, no end of tracks have been miscounted. And I has a sad. And other last.fm'ers on the forums also have sads about this. We've been teased about "fixes" forthcoming and when I asked again about that plan, got an answer I liked.

last.fm will implement a fix

This will be best fixed with adding new track-level scrobble corrections, once that's implemented later in the year. It looks bad now because we can't make changes the corrections dataset until the new scrobble db is deployed, but once we're able to add new track corrections / redirections to the site, this problem should be greatly reduced.

And I has a happy. I like happy.

Living In A Flyover State

Let's talk about concerts in Arizona. Or lack thereof. As the fifth largest city in America, Phoenix does get visited very often by bands. But usually they're the super popular ones, with lots of resources and backing. So what seems to happen more often than not is a band I love announce "a US tour" when really it's nothing of the sort. They'll play in New York, Boston, and then in LA and San Fransisco.

The rest of us get to watch as they flyover on their way to California.

Waves to the plane carrying the band I love.

In the last few weeks two bands from my youth that I never had the chance to see live announced US "tours". And have a guess what States are being visited? There's no way you'll guess New York and California..

Killing Joke are playing their 40th anniversary gigs. And for the first time in *mumble* years The The are playing live. But they're not visiting any of the flyover states. Which is a real bummer as I would love to see both of them.

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400,000

It only took a little over 12 years, and almost slipped by me. But a couple weeks back I crossed the 400,000 scrobble count over at last.fm. There aren't many of the old guard still scrobbling every day and I must admit I don't spend anywhere near as much time there as I used to. But I do still love me some music listening stats. And I'm glad Spotify still has last.fm support baked in now that I'm fully immersed in streaming.

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Siri History

I'm a little on the fence about asking your personal dingus questions out loud. It's not quite old man yells at cloud but meh, I can take it or leave it. About the only thing I ever really do ask out loud is "who is this?" when hearing a song I don't know.

As helpful as this is, I'm usually not in a position to really do anything about it at that moment. I'm certainly not going to remember who Siri said was playing that song. So what I'd like is to be able to look back on the things I asked Siri at some later point. But you can't, it's all lost in the moment.

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Guilty Pleasures

We all have our musical guilty pleasures. Something a little further afield from usual listening habits. You have a few glasses of red wine, you fire up YouTube and before you know it you're watching old Fleetwood Mac and REO Speedwagon.

No? Just me?

Most recently I stumbled across Fleetwood Mac's 1997 reunion shows and The Dance album in particular. The song Silver Springs immediately caught my attention. My parents are big Fleetwood Mac fans yet I don't remember ever hearing it as a kid. The video from the show highlights just how raw and emotional music can be. The performance a masterpiece of how it should be done kids.

Rolling Stone has a good article on the song, turns out it has quite a story to tell.

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2017 Music Stats

I love looking back on the year to find what music I listened to most. Thanks to last.fm this is all super easy. I was surprised to find that I played more music in 2017 than in any of the previous four years. Go me.

31,323 total plays for the year, from 2,188 different artists, comprising 8,656 unique songs.

My top ten artists of the year have both old favorites and new blood. Apparently I listened to The Jam a lot this year?

Depeche Mode (715)
The Jam (553)
Gary Numan (481)
Rush (414)
Trisomie 21 (401)
The Birthday Massacre (384)
She Past Away (362)
Ultravox (357)
Skeleton Hands (350)
Moby (309)

And the top ten songs had a couple of surprises. I do really like Neil Peart's drumming on Between The Wheels.

Rush – Between The Wheels (59)
Camoflage – That Smiling Face (52)
Skeleton Hands – Dotted Lines (51)
Trisomie 21 – The Last Song (49)
Belong – Never Came Close (46)
Tones On Tail – Performance (46)
Le Cassette – Arms Of Mind (45)
Fad Gadget – Lady Shave (44)
TR/ST – Shoom (42)
Rush – The Body Electric (42)

With the amount of times the kiddo wanted to listen to Sia's Chandelier on the way to school I'm surprised that didn't feature more heavily.

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Harsher

Today's office soundtrack provided by Boy Harsher.

BOY HARSHER is a dark electronic duo that produces gritty dance beats infused with ethereal vocals, creating a sound that is eerie, intense and incredibly danceable. Augustus Muller develops the underbelly of sound with minimal beats and grinding synths, where Jae Matthews whispers, screams and chants on top. Together, the music created is somewhere between industrial, drone and confessional storytelling.

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On Bands Not Seen

We were chatting about concerts today. I realized that while I've been fortunate in who I've been able to see live over the years, there are still many from my youth that remain a mystery. Some of these are likely to come into town, others not. But here's the list, no doubt I've overlooked a couple of obvious choices.

(1) Still active:

Duran Duran
Echo & The Bunnymen
Fields Of The Nephilim
Gary Numan
Howard Jones
Human League
Iron Maiden
Killing Joke
KMFDM
Marilyn Manson
Midnight Oil
Ministry
The Mission
New Order
Pixies
Rammstein
Simple Minds
U2

(2) Still active. Missing key members so I don't really care if I see them in their current form:

Adam & The Ants (Stuart still tours as Adam)
Alice In Chains
Pop Will Eat Itself
Queen

(3) Not active or split. Chances of seeing ever again slim:

Curve
Pink Floyd
Rage Against The Machine
Rush
The Smiths
Siouxsie And The Banshees
Soft Cell
Ultravox
Yazoo

(4) Will never get to see now:

Beastie Boys
The Clash
Fad Gadget
Joy Division
Nirvana
Tangerine Dream

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