Friday

Spent a bit of time hacking on lastweekly today to rip out Twitter integration. It's been busted since Elon broke the API last year; that and I'm not really that interested in Twitter these days. Slowly replacing all that with WordPress integration so the weekly cron job will now post last.fm stats here automagically instead.

It's that time of the year where we get our Olive trees sprayed to prevent the fruit from growing. Dear reader, why would anyone ever do that? The trees look pretty, but the actual olives themselves are a bit of a pain in the ass. They fall on the driveway and if you step on them they stain the concrete and then you walk that lovely olive splatter into the house. Plus they're a Pigeon magnet and no one wants to host a Pigeon party.

Because there are more TV shows to watch than hours left in my life, I decided to add yet one more watching project to the list. As you do. Last night was the start of the big X-Files re-watch extravaganza. All 11 seasons of it. One episode down, 217 left to go!

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last.fm Year In Review

last.fm have their own year in review called last.year. Not only is it far more comprehensive than Spotify Wrapped, but they do it right by acknowledging that December is a month that exists.

So here's mine. I listened to more music in 2023 compared to the previous year. 24,053 listens. Comprised of 2,552 artists, 4705 albums, and 9,644 unique tracks.

I was going to come up with a "my favorite albums of 2023" but I must admit I haven't really paid attention to new releases and have a lot of catching up to do.

That said, albums from 2023 that I did listen to and recommend are:

Ladytron – Time's Arrow
Depeche Mode – Memento Mori
Blur – The Ballad Of Darren
Sleaford Mods – UK Grimm

Looking forward to all the songs in my ears 2024 edition.

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Half A Million Right There

Half A Million

I discovered last.fm 16 years ago and is one of those services from the olden times I still enjoy to this day. Being able to look back on my music listening habits over that time frame is a wonderful thing.

Today marks a bit of a milestone with 500,000 tracks scrobbled. And the track that nudged the count across the finish line none other than Pet Shop Boys' We All Feel Better In The Dark. (don't we though?).

Here's to another 500,000 tracks and/or 16 years, whichever comes first.

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2020 In Music

At the beginning of every December, Spotify releases their personalized year in review. A smidge early for me as it only really accounts for 11 months of the year. Does December not count?

And lo, now that December is over, here is the last.fm 2020 in review.

I scrobbled 24,627 songs, from 1,844 artists and 3,787 albums. A hair more than 2019, yet way off the pace from a decade ago when my job allowed me to have my headphones in constantly.

Top artists:

Depeche Mode
Killing Joke
Actors
Clan of Xymox
The Cure

Top Albums:

Makeup And Vanity Set – 88:88
The League Unlimited Orchestra – Love And Dancing
Vangelis – Blade Runner Soundtrack
Actors – It Will Come To You
Depeche Mode – Construction Time Again

Top tracks:

The Chameleons – Swamp Thing
Actors – PTL
Then Comes Silence – Strangers
Linea Aspera – Synapse
Actors – We Don't Have To Dance

Here's to a productive music listening experience in 2021!

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2019 In Scrobbles

So how did the year shake out music wise? last.fm says:

2019 In Music

Looks like I listened to slightly less music this year than the past couple, 23,958 tracks.

The kiddo loves her some Twenty One Pilots so they're usually a goto when we're driving to school. Hometown and Cut My Lip are two favorites.

The new Drab Majesty album this year was particularly good. I saw a bloke with one of their t-shirts in Starbucks the other week and got chatting about gigs we've been to.

In November I discovered Preoccupations and they were the find of the year. If Editors and Interpol had a child, its name would be Preoccupations.

Boy Harsher are an electroclash band and when they get going I defy anyone to not nod your head. Good driving music.

Rush. Because Rush.

Keychains & Snowstorms is Soft Cell's 10 disc box set. And it's amazing. The remix of Meet Murder My Angel is sublime. Bless Spotify for having it.

In 2018 Orbital released Monsters Exist and I still loved it this year. The synth melody on The Raid is the best.

And my old muckers Rammstein. Their new album is great. Go watch any of their 2019 concert footage on YouTube.

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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.

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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