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ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

I am running a project/gift for my nephew. Every week, ideally on a Wednesday, I buy one music album. He turns 9 today, and I've been accumulating music for him for a year, with the overall goal of giving him more than 500 albums over 10 years, from his 8th birthday to his 18th. For the first two years, I'm just accumulating these albums in a sub-folder on my harddrive, and I'll give him the 100+ albums on an MP3 player for his 10th birthday, then give him one album per week for the next 8 years, plus whatever more-special presents I can think of on his actual birthdays.

This is an excuse for me to do a couple of things I've been meaning to do, either more seriously or more regularly or just at all, as well as being what I think is a pretty good present for him. I'm not going to talk about my nephew much at all here, I fully acknowledge that this is 99% about me, not him, and anyways goons ruin everything and I can't trust any of you. So all you know is his age, and that his uncle is a lunatic who clings to obsolete technology and ideas.

I'm a goddam magpie, grabbing every shiny bottlecap, bit of foil, and plastic bauble I see, but I do want to use this project to explore music more broadly than my usual "I like this stuff / I don't like this stuff" reaction to tunes I hear.

If this buying-music project is not a good fit for NMD then I'm happy for a mod to kill it or move it and appropriately reprimand me.

******************************
I'll post the details of each album I buy, generally on a Wednesday (I'm in Australia, so it might be Tuesdays for many of you), a link to the album itself if it's online in its entirety somewhere (such as a Bandcamp page), and video of one song if I can without violating copyright or otherwise being dumb.

Because I waited a year before posting this thread, I'll post two each week for the next year. I reserve the right to post a bunch of weeks' worth in quick succession to cover for times I might be away and not able to update on schedule.

Why post this? Because I want to talk about all things music, especially the weird and counter-intuitive experiences I've had buying music - it's often surprisingly difficult to accomplish take-my-money with some musicians. And this is a chance for everyone to pile on and tell me I should just buy him a Spotify subscription and go back to playing video games.

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ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

001 Arrogant Worms Discography 200304
I started this project with a big pile of comedy albums - because every pre-teen needs some funny music to yell at his friends/teachers/family at inappropriate times.

The complete collection, to early 2020, of Canadian comedy band The Arrogant Worms. Here's their bandcamp page: https://arrogantworms1.bandcamp.com/. That's 166 songs on 18 albums, but there a bunch of duplicates, live versions, and other overlap.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IehQRVylI0U
My favourite of their songs, The Last Saskatchewan Pirate.

A live show of the Worms was one of the first "real" dates my now-wife and I went on, a few days before my nephew was born, so of course I had to kick this off with them.

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

Digression: Bandcamp.

I really like Bandcamp, you should get yourself an account there if you haven't already. I'll leave it to others to describe Bandcamp in detail, reveal its secrets, discuss its scandals, etc., but I quite like it.

I try to overpay for music, and bandcamp makes that easy. I usually add 1 of whatever currency a given album is being sold in to the price I pay, so $11 for a $10 album, or £5 for a £4 album (I haven't yet found any albums for sale in currencies that trade at dozens or hundreds to the US dollar). For free albums, I usually pay about $5. And I buy several albums at once on Bandcamp Fridays, when Bandcamp.com forgoes their usual cut and 100% of the money goes to the artists.

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

002 Radiohead - In Rainbows (2 Disk set) 200311
An article in The Economist, of all places, let me know that this 2-disk album from 2007 was the first pay-what-you-want, digital-only (at first) release from a major band, a band that was well established and had already sold millions of albums.
https://www.radiohead.com/library/#ir/in-rainbows
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9bahTUVLXZw

Before I started this project I thought about what I wanted to achieve, and I already knew that a large amount of music was not available for purchase as digital downloads. This is obviously ridiculous in 2020, yet here we are.

ExecuDork fucked around with this message at 23:25 on Mar 4, 2021

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

003 Arctic Monkeys - AM 200318
I'd been meaning to listen to Arctic Monkeys and I ordered a couple of CDs from Amazon when I could not find another, more direct way to buy their music. Again, my naive assumption had been that the overwhelming majority of music I buy for this project would be in the form of direct downloads of MP3 files. Fortunately, I have a USB-CD-ROM drive for these occassions. It also came from Amazon; it works fine on my Windows 10 laptop but refuses to play nice with my wife's Macbook. Not that we have many CDs or DVDs, but I do use it a few times a year because of this project.
https://ukstore.arcticmonkeys.com/collections/albums/products/am?variant=17144180867190
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bpOSxM0rNPM

This album, and the next one, were the seed that got me thinking more about what I'm trying to accomplish here. I chose Amazon because I have Prime and the shipping price (UK -> Australia) from the band's website was enough that I went with Mr. Bezos' Big Faceless Corporation. I've since bought a few more albums from Amazon, but now I try to keep the money closer to the artist whenever possible, and I'll pay a premium to support my "money goes to artist" ideology. Within limits, of course.

Also, this purchase was a big success for me - I really like these songs. I came up with a kind of rule: buy once from a given band or musician in each year. I don't want this project to just fall into some kind of completion-ism that I know I'm prone to, and keep the focus as broad (and unfocused) as possible.

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

004 Tame Impala - Currents 200325
I bought Lonerism a few years ago when I briefly lived in Tasmania as a souvenir of my 4 months in Australia. I'm living in the land of Aus again, and my nephew is in Canada, so I've got a kind of secondary goal of providing lots of Australian music that he might not otherwise get to hear.
https://official.tameimpala.com/collections/merch/products/currents-vinyl-lp?variant=40940155982
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pFptt7Cargc

Album micro-review: surprisingly different from the previous album, this is more like dance music I'd expect to hear in a club, while Lonerism felt less like music mainly for (drug-assisted) dancing. Still, I like it.

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

005 Weird Al Yankovic - The Essential "Weird Al" Yankovic 200401
For April Fool's day, a Weird Al greatest hits seemed appropriate. I bought this on Amazon and it was backordered for a couple of months but I backfilled my calendar to line this up. I'm keeping with a kind of Wednesday-based pattern, choosing music that somehow, in my mind, fits whatever special day happens to fall on a Wednesday.
https://www.weirdal.com/catalog/the-essential-weird-al-yankovic/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SMhwddNQSWQ
It's hard to choose just one Weird Al song to represent this 2-disk compilation album. But in honour of SomethingAwful.com's subtitle, "The Internet Makes You Stupid" - which is objectively true - I'll go with Dare to be Stupid

Some holidays never happen on Wednesdays - think of all those "first Friday..." or "Monday following..." holidays. But most special days are tied to a numbered day of a specific month and over a 10-year span most of those holidays will fall on a Wednesday at least once. In 2020, 1 April was the first notable Wednesday after my nephew's birthday in early March. I find 'special' Wednesdays by simply browsing forward in Google Calendar on my phone - somehow I ended up with it set to show me holidays for Australia, Canada, the USA, and most states and provinces (at least in Australia and Canada) as well as major religious holidays (leaning heavily Christian). The next notable Wednesday in 2020 is not until Rememberance Day, 11 November, but (spoiler alert) I failed to notice the only "holiday" I've yet found that always happens on a Wednesday. Stay tuned for April 2021 for that one.

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

006 Various Artists - Fire Fight Australia 200408
I saw this CD on the tables at the entrance to the anarchonistic music store in the local shopping mall. I've since discovered this chain, Sanity, continues to operate shops selling CDs, DVDs, and board games (plus various celebrity-related accessories) into the third decade of the 21st century. Somehow. Walking into that store felt like I'd stepped back 30 years to the music store chains of my junior-high-school days, like HMV or A&B Sound, though at a much smaller scale. Sanity occupies a single small retail bay in this modest-sized mall, flanked by jewelry stores, asian grocers, shuttered-by-COVID restaurants, and a big anchor department store at the far end of the hallway (in this mall, KMart - which is a whole 'nother timewarp for me, a Canadian who last saw the KMart logo in Canada around the time I was going into that HMV).
It's the recording from a big benefit concert to raise money for recovering from the devastating wildfires Australia suffered in late 2019.
https://firefightaustralia.com/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-RJSbO8UZVY
I picked 5 Seconds of Summer as the representative of this compilation album from a live concert because the sing-along version is incomprehensible. I'm listening to this youtube video while I write this so I can figure out what the hell they're saying. At the concert, 5SoS (as they are apparently called) was so popular and well-known that they let the audience do most of the singing. I'd never heard the song before, nor heard of the band, so the wall of noise completing half-screamed sentences from the singers was just a roar to me.

The rest of the album suffers from similar problems, generally to a lesser extent. Some songs are inherently sing-alongs, I've been to plenty of concerts and had a transcendent time when the band rolls out their big, everybody-claps-and-chants-and-belts-out-the-chorus-together song (every good band has at least one of these). Other songs, because of structure or lyrics or the emotions the song is built around, don't really work as a sing along. Tina Arena's Chains, for example, is a song that I kinda like, and it's on this album (I'd never heard it before, this album helped me find some interesting artists. Which is a big part of why I bought it). But when Tina exhorts the audience to join in and really sing out their feelings about the fires, it just doesn't fit. "C'mon! Everyone! IIIIIIIII'M IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIN CHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAINNNNSSS!!!!!!"

EDIT: Oh hey! See for yourself and decide if Chains works as an audience sing-along for celebrating community resilience in the face of natural disasters. 18 minute Youtube video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vnorHYUTRRE

ExecuDork fucked around with this message at 04:14 on Mar 24, 2021

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

007 Jet - Get Born (Live) 200415
Another Amazon purchase. This live album was a bit disappointing to me, because I'm not familiar enough with Jet's music to get the songs when the singer is playing around with the audience. But it did lead to an idea for this project overall: to include studio versions as well as live versions of many songs, to allow comparisons that should modify my opinion that live recordings are almost always inferior to polished studio versions. I've seen plenty of discussion about this, with most opinions seeming to decry the over-produced studio versions while simultaneously ignoring the importance of the non-band-members mentioned in the liner notes of every album.
https://www.jetofficial.com/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eBy2Nu97cqo

I'm not sure if this video is from the same concert that any of these songs came from, but the way the audience does most of the singing is at least consistent with the track on the album.
This also continues my efforts to increase the Australian content of my music collection. And most of these songs were recorded at Jet concerts in Australia.

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

008 Special Request - Offworld 200422
My first wander through Bandcamp turned up this when I started browsing electronica, a music genre that I have little history with. I'm a bit of a space nerd, and this album's theme (as least as far as titles go) appealed to me.
https://special-request.bandcamp.com/album/offworld
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QLv61b8D8Hs

I'd never heard of Special Request before I stumbled across this on Bandcamp, but he (I think it's just one person) has been consistently putting out tracks for years. I've never spent any time in British or European dance clubs so I have no real experience of this kind of music. Perhaps my nephew will turn into a raver, and it will all be my fault. Or something.

Cobra Commander
Jan 18, 2011


Wheres the Bolt Thrower????

Also, get him Dopesmoker sooner rather than later.

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

Cobra Commander posted:

Wheres the Bolt Thrower????

Also, get him Dopesmoker sooner rather than later.

Both are very interesting, thanks! Any particular albums / tracks you'd especially recommend from Bolt Thrower?

I like that Dopesmoker is apparently an hour-long song that took years to write.

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

009 - The Darkest of the Hillside Thickets - The Dukes of Alhazred 200429
The "Lovecraftian Rock" band The Darkest of the Hillside Thickets has been on my want list for more than 10 years, I finally got around to buying one of their albums. The lead singer, Toren Atkinson, was one of the three hosts of the now-defunct podcast, Caustic Soda. Everybody needs a little Chthulu mythos in their ears from time to time.

https://thedarkestofthehillsidethickets.bandcamp.com/album/the-dukes-of-alhazred
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tQfMXmvPNYA
This is probably my favourite song from the album.

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

010 Corridor - Le Voyage Éternel 200506
Another from Bandcamp, this time looking for French-language music. My nephew lives in a part of Canada with a strong but quite small minority of French-speakers, tracing their ancestry to the voyageurs, the French explorers and traders who famously travelled long distances with heavy cargoes of furs from the interior of Canada a few hundred years ago. Corridor popped up when I was browsing for a Bandcamp Friday special, and they're from Montreal, the point of departure for many voyageurs.

https://corridormtl.bandcamp.com/album/le-voyage-ternel
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UlO_XhHLTCw

incoherent
Apr 24, 2004

01010100011010000111001
00110100101101100011011
000110010101110010


Powerful uncle posting itt. Bless u op.

Cobra Commander
Jan 18, 2011


ExecuDork posted:

Both are very interesting, thanks! Any particular albums / tracks you'd especially recommend from Bolt Thrower?

I like that Dopesmoker is apparently an hour-long song that took years to write.

Depending on who you ask, Bolt Thrower got better with each album or stayed consistent through their entire career. They are goon favorite death metal band for good reason. Those Once Loyal is their final album and it's their most accessible but still retains exactly what you want from Bolt Thrower. If I were a kid and got to listen to Bolt Thrower earlier than when I actually found them, I would have said this is the coolest album ever. You could basically pick any BT track and get a great idea of what the band is and what their aesthetic and sound are.

Also, the vocalist does not support Nazi bands!

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

Cobra Commander posted:

Depending on who you ask, Bolt Thrower got better with each album or stayed consistent through their entire career. They are goon favorite death metal band for good reason. Those Once Loyal is their final album and it's their most accessible but still retains exactly what you want from Bolt Thrower. If I were a kid and got to listen to Bolt Thrower earlier than when I actually found them, I would have said this is the coolest album ever. You could basically pick any BT track and get a great idea of what the band is and what their aesthetic and sound are.

Also, the vocalist does not support Nazi bands!

Excellent, thank you! I found a long guide to Bolt Thrower at The Quietus (never heard of them before, looks interesting): https://thequietus.com/articles/29400-bolt-thrower
Seems the CD for Those Once Loyal is available from a few different sellers, but nothing seems to be available through Bolt Thower's actual website. Oh well. They do have a Bandcamp page, but that album isn't on there. Looks like I need to spend some time listening and thinking - great!

incoherent posted:

Powerful uncle posting itt. Bless u op.

Thank you!

EDIT: seems Bandcamp does have Those Once Loyal, and I won't have to ponder the "Best of" album.

ExecuDork fucked around with this message at 03:23 on Apr 8, 2021

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

011 Kraftwerk - Trans Europa Express 200513
With this album, I started a minor tradition for myself relating to recently-deceased artists. I'd heard of Kraftwerk before, as a kind of pseudo-legendary progenitor of all things electronica, but it wasn't until I read an obituary of Florian Schneider that I decided to actually listen to them. This is, by the descriptions I read, their most influential album, and I managed to find the German-language version.

http://www.kraftwerk.com/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XMVokT5e0zs

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

012 Clutch - From Beale Street to Oblivion 200520
I discovered Clutch a few years ago, and I already had their self-titled album. I installed Shazam on my phone out of boredom, and the first song I used it to identify was Electric Worry. I had thought I was at a bar, but this was during COVID lockdown so that couldn't be it. My notes tell me I was watching a trailer video for Farm Simulator 19.

http://pro-rock.com/index.cfm?page=discography&categoryid=1&view=album&albumid=75 The band's website is, it seems, just their Facebook page. But they're flogging their stuff through pro-rock.com, perhaps because "clutch.com" wasn't available?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s4ABpbxIPFI

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SKWR8B0LlhI

I really like Clutch, they're my go-to for "get poo poo done", like cleaning the house, working on the car, or some stupid repetitive task. But my wife really doesn't like the singer's voice when he dips into his growly vocalising. Clutch is one band, I've met others, that mix melodic singing with other vocal forms. I've never played the Slipknot album I have (All Hope is Gone) in my wife's presence. But this isn't Slipknot so I don't need to go into that here.

Nam Taf
Jun 25, 2005

I am Fat Man, hear me roar!



This thread could easily just become a PYF albums for each poster.
However, I'm going to try to pick the albums that most influenced me throughout my teen and 20s years. I don't believe they are necessarily appropriate for the initial mp3 drop, but I think that at some point they should at least have the chance to shape someone's musical taste. I also don't believe they're necessarily the artistically best productions of the respective bands, but I think they're the best example of 'if you have to listen to one album to get this band, this is it'.

1) A Perfect Circle - Mer De Noms, or 13th Step. You can't go wrong with either, and I think they are spectacular hard rock albums

2) Sigur Ros - Takk... - This is the IMO the most accessable of their albums, but I think it's a pretty good taster of the style of post-rock you get out of there.

3) Oceanlab - Sirens of the Sea - It's never going to be everyone's favourite dance album, but I think it's probably the most concentrated example of good uplifting, vocal trance.

4) Devin Townsend (Project/Band) - Synchrestra, Addicted, Epicloud - Any of these 3 albums I think best encapsulates his more progressive side. Addicted is probably the most accessable, but I got in on Synchestra within the context of liking a lot of opther metal

5) Strapping Young Lad - City - Alien might be more popular, and I bounced off this album about 50 times, but once I 'got' it I understood what extreme metal was. It's a barely-shackled bipolar manic episode in album form and once you start peeling back the layers it has so much to offer.

6) Aqua - Aquarium - It's europop at its greatest. It's unashamedly cheesy, fun and uplifting.

7) The Prodigy - Fat of the Land - Jilted is better, but this is way more accessable. It's the purest encapsulation of what they're about.

8) John Farnham - Whispering Jack - Aussie pop's best production. You don't need me to say more, you already get this.

9) Simon & Garfunkel - The Essential Simon and Garfunkel - you could go multiple of their albums, but I think none in particular stands out beyond a best-of and you're missing out on a true encapsulation of their genuis without that broad exposure.

10) The Beach Boys - Pet Sounds - I refuse to write words here

11) Rammstein - Reise Rise, or Mutter - I feel there should be more non-English albums here, as I've only listed 2, but I'll leave that up to someone else

12) Lady Gaga - The Fame Monster - album is good and quintessential 2010ish, suck it haters

13) Nine Inch Nails - Downward Spiral - The Fragile is probably better artistically, but TDS is more focused and a better example of what they do

14) Hilltop Hoods - The Hard Road - they're held up there for a reason. Aussie hiphop might be better elsewhere, but this is certainly its leading example

15) Oasis - What's the Story (Morning Glory) - Britpop 101

Off the top of my head, I think those albums have gone a long way to shaping my musical taste for a variety of reasons. In some cases, they're environmental - it was the right album at the right time when I was in the right place. However, I think they're genuinely good examples of what they represent, even if I don't listen to them

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

Nam Taf posted:

However, I'm going to try to pick the albums that most influenced me throughout my teen and 20s years. I don't believe they are necessarily appropriate for the initial mp3 drop, but I think that at some point they should at least have the chance to shape someone's musical taste. I also don't believe they're necessarily the artistically best productions of the respective bands, but I think they're the best example of 'if you have to listen to one album to get this band, this is it'.

Excellent suggestions

Off the top of my head, I think those albums have gone a long way to shaping my musical taste for a variety of reasons. In some cases, they're environmental - it was the right album at the right time when I was in the right place. However, I think they're genuinely good examples of what they represent, even if I don't listen to them

These are great ideas. I've got at least two goals with this project, beyond simply providing my nephew with an extensive and impressive music collection he can show off when he's 18 or 19 or whatever. First, I'm using this as a motivator to get me exploring beyond my ossified tastes. What other people imprinted on in their teens and 20s is absolutely ideal, I know I missed a ton of great stuff simply because it's not what was playing at my friends' houses when I was that old. Second, I want to avoid simply piling all of my want-list from that age onto my nephew. He was born in 2012, I was born in 1978. I don't want this to feel like what "classic rock" radio was to me when I was in high school - a boomer stranglehold on musical tastes that excluded nearly all music from the 80s and 90s as worthless "pop" as opposed to proper "Rock & Roll". I was remarkably sheltered and naive when I was 16, I know.

I particularly like the suggestion for more non-English music, this is also a big gap for me. I'm just gonna copy-paste your entire list into my rambling Word document where I keep track of ideas and purchases and so forth for this project. And I need to carve out a separate section for stuff to get in a few years, when he's old enough to appreciate it (maybe - it's also possible that he'll hate most of what I supply and I'm looking forward to his suggestions and requests).

One of my favourite aspects of this project are the stories that come up behind the music. I'm finding little stories in my own efforts to buy music (I'm in the middle of an amusing (to me) micro-project around Jamiroquai's Travelling Without Moving, which will hopefully appear in the later part of 2021 or early 2022). Plus how I'm discovering some of the interesting background, like the way band members move between groups and sometimes form "supergroups" (e.g. Queens of the Stone Age), or strike off on their own individual projects (e.g. various things Gord Downie did in between fronting The Tragically Hip).

Nam Taf posted:

This thread could easily just become a PYF albums for each poster. .

I would be very happy if this happened! Everyone Seriously, the end-goal for this project is 600 albums, there's room for nearly anything here.

Good Soldier Svejk
Jul 5, 2010

Great times call for great men



I'm going to limit myself to an essential 5 albums and see where that ends up and then give you some of the non-english recs as a freeform.

1. Outside - David Bowie: Perfect concept album. Just weird and beautiful. A fever dream of music and lyrics.
The Fragile - Nine Inch Nails: The first album I ever bought. I was way too young for it, like probably 8 or 9 even, but my mom let me get it and I loved it. Listened to it until the second disk exploded in my walkman. It is arguably the most ambition album Reznor ever made. Each song is so goddamned dense with sound that even two decades later I'm still hearing new things in it.
Stop Making Sense - Talking Heads: I hope it's not cheating to pick a live album but a lot of these are the best versions of the best songs the band made so how can you not?
Deltron 3030 - Deltron 3030: I don't know much about hip-hop but I do not without Deltron there'd be no Gorillaz, and Deltron is without contest the better album than the self-titled Gorillaz release. Essential listening sci-fi fantasy concept rap album.
The Complete Collection - Mississippi John Hurt: I was trying to avoid compilations but due to the nature of his weird releases throughout his lifetime, this is probably easier to find. I love blues and folk and no one does it better than John Hurt did. He is absolutely 100% essential.


Non-english recommendations:
We Ate the Machine - Polysics: Japanese power punk new wave. Really any Polysics album will do, this is just a personal favorite. They're all so energetic and frenetic and awesome, you can't go wrong. Heavily influenced by Devo.
Woman Worldwide - Justice: French house glam rock.
Akira Soundtrack - Geinoh Yamashirogumi: Even if you've never seen the film, the soundtrack is something entirely its own. A mix of world music, percussion, and experimental design.
Tetsuo the Iron Man Soundtrack - Chu Ishikawa: More than Nine Inch Nails, Chu Ishikawa defines the industrial sound. His percussion and synth mixture is gorgeous, unlike anything else you will ever hear.

BigFactory
Sep 17, 2002



Would a smaller quantity of physical media be a cooler present? With some of these albums there’s not a big difference between “owning” the digital files and getting handed a piece of paper that says “stream this album”. Some of the ones you chose are probably not on most streaming services, so I understand that’s a little different.

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

Good Soldier Svejk posted:

I'm going to limit myself to an essential 5 albums and see where that ends up and then give you some of the non-english recs as a freeform.

This is fantastic, thank you! Top-5 albums, First-purchased/memorable birthday present, I-can't-stop-coming-back-to-this, all great ideas. I've copied your entire list into my tracking / thinking document.

Good Soldier Svejk posted:

Stop Making Sense - Talking Heads: I hope it's not cheating to pick a live album but a lot of these are the best versions of the best songs the band made so how can you not?

There's no cheating here, the rules are self-imposed guidelines and I routinely find ways to break my own rules. They don't apply at all to anyone else. I'm trying to wrap my head around the whole concept of live and studio versions of music, and the Talking Heads are yet another band I really want to include but I don't know where to start. That's what the Where do I start with ___ ? thread comes in, which you have handily avoided the need for in the case of the Talking Heads - cheers! I have to keep restraining myself, I keep going on minor binges and buying a month or two worth of music in a single afternoon. I've got a decade, there'll be time for certain things later. But talking about them now is perfect. Often, it comes down to whim when I'm actually clicking "buy" (or, rarely, physically picking up a CD from a rack in a store. Time has no meaning, everything is happening at once, the universe is fathomless mystery).

BigFactory posted:

Would a smaller quantity of physical media be a cooler present? With some of these albums there’s not a big difference between “owning” the digital files and getting handed a piece of paper that says “stream this album”. Some of the ones you chose are probably not on most streaming services, so I understand that’s a little different.
It would be a different present, and yes, possibly cooler. Part of my inspiration is remembering how impressed I was in first year at university, age 19, and a new friend had been collecting CDs pretty seriously since his early teens. He had 500 CDs in his student-basement apartment, and a pretty awesome (to me) stereo to blast them on (we were 19 or 20 years old, there's no such thing as quiet). I'd like to imagine my nephew pulling out some obscure track or album to impress his new friends (or his old friends) when he's about that age. Maybe that's vain of me. I feel like the technological advancements since that evening in 1997, looking at the sheer mass of shiny plastic piled up on the floor, means I can give him that amount of music without also giving him the dozen moving boxes needed to carry it around.

Having said that, a considerable fraction of what I'm getting, probably 40% or so, is in the form of physical media. I cannot buy some music in pure electronic format, it is only available pressed onto foil encased in plastic (CD) or vinyl. I haven't bought any vinyl yet, I don't have the necessary hardware to play it (obviously, I could get a turntable pretty easily), and the appeal of vinyl seems largely based on factors beyond this project, like the purported sound quality that wouldn't survive the digitisation-and-global-sending needed for music to get from me to him. I could send the physical media, and I might do that with the CDs at some point. And as he gets older his own opinions will become more and more important, and maybe he'll decide to dive into vinyl.

The actual process of buying music is a major part of this project. A friend, who has a 13-year-old son, told me to just get a Spotify account for my nephew because that's what he'll really want anyways. But I like the idea of owning music, rather than listening to it once and then maybe forgetting it completely. I'm planning to put together a few playlists as I go, but that's just a way to re-arrange the music that I've already purchased. A streaming list, as you suggest, is basically a playlist but for music he might never hear again.

And I want to continue discussing these ideas. There are advantages to streaming services, new and old music gets added to those services regularly, and there are professional music critics out there with some well-developed ideas about the experience of enjoying music.

BigFactory
Sep 17, 2002



ExecuDork posted:

This is fantastic, thank you! Top-5 albums, First-purchased/memorable birthday present, I-can't-stop-coming-back-to-this, all great ideas. I've copied your entire list into my tracking / thinking document.


There's no cheating here, the rules are self-imposed guidelines and I routinely find ways to break my own rules. They don't apply at all to anyone else. I'm trying to wrap my head around the whole concept of live and studio versions of music, and the Talking Heads are yet another band I really want to include but I don't know where to start. That's what the Where do I start with ___ ? thread comes in, which you have handily avoided the need for in the case of the Talking Heads - cheers! I have to keep restraining myself, I keep going on minor binges and buying a month or two worth of music in a single afternoon. I've got a decade, there'll be time for certain things later. But talking about them now is perfect. Often, it comes down to whim when I'm actually clicking "buy" (or, rarely, physically picking up a CD from a rack in a store. Time has no meaning, everything is happening at once, the universe is fathomless mystery).

It would be a different present, and yes, possibly cooler. Part of my inspiration is remembering how impressed I was in first year at university, age 19, and a new friend had been collecting CDs pretty seriously since his early teens. He had 500 CDs in his student-basement apartment, and a pretty awesome (to me) stereo to blast them on (we were 19 or 20 years old, there's no such thing as quiet). I'd like to imagine my nephew pulling out some obscure track or album to impress his new friends (or his old friends) when he's about that age. Maybe that's vain of me. I feel like the technological advancements since that evening in 1997, looking at the sheer mass of shiny plastic piled up on the floor, means I can give him that amount of music without also giving him the dozen moving boxes needed to carry it around.

Having said that, a considerable fraction of what I'm getting, probably 40% or so, is in the form of physical media. I cannot buy some music in pure electronic format, it is only available pressed onto foil encased in plastic (CD) or vinyl. I haven't bought any vinyl yet, I don't have the necessary hardware to play it (obviously, I could get a turntable pretty easily), and the appeal of vinyl seems largely based on factors beyond this project, like the purported sound quality that wouldn't survive the digitisation-and-global-sending needed for music to get from me to him. I could send the physical media, and I might do that with the CDs at some point. And as he gets older his own opinions will become more and more important, and maybe he'll decide to dive into vinyl.

The actual process of buying music is a major part of this project. A friend, who has a 13-year-old son, told me to just get a Spotify account for my nephew because that's what he'll really want anyways. But I like the idea of owning music, rather than listening to it once and then maybe forgetting it completely. I'm planning to put together a few playlists as I go, but that's just a way to re-arrange the music that I've already purchased. A streaming list, as you suggest, is basically a playlist but for music he might never hear again.

And I want to continue discussing these ideas. There are advantages to streaming services, new and old music gets added to those services regularly, and there are professional music critics out there with some well-developed ideas about the experience of enjoying music.

I don’t know if it matters or not, but the way you hooked up external media drives to a computer 20 years ago was pretty different, if I remember, than how it is today, and while I don’t see USB going anywhere any time soon, I didn’t think FireWire was going anywhere at the time either, and I liked Zip drives a lot.

On the other hand, the way you hook up a CD player to a stereo hasn’t changed since 1980, a turntable longer than that.

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

BigFactory posted:

I don’t know if it matters or not, but the way you hooked up external media drives to a computer 20 years ago was pretty different, if I remember, than how it is today, and while I don’t see USB going anywhere any time soon, I didn’t think FireWire was going anywhere at the time either, and I liked Zip drives a lot.

On the other hand, the way you hook up a CD player to a stereo hasn’t changed since 1980, a turntable longer than that.

My plan - subject to change, like all plans - is to send my nephew a collection of MP3 files after the initial 2-year album drop (which includes a way for him to listen to this music. More discussion on that later). I'm assuming the MP3 format will be still widely useable in 10 years, but I agree with you that this is by no means guaranteed. How those files get onto the music-playing hardware is an open question, but currently my sister-in-law has a laptop computer and a decent internet connection at home, so if I wanted to send an album of MP3 files today he could listen to it, at least, on her laptop's (presumably not great) speakers.

When I buy music on Bandcamp, I use an account I set up for him; I have my own account that I use for stuff for me but not for him (not much of that, recently, but it means I can follow artists without worrying about age-appropriate concerns). I'll transfer this account to him at some point, and all of that music will be effectively on the cloud, accessible to any internet-connected music-capable device he might have. I'll put everything else into some kind of cloud storage, too, and make sure he'll be able to access it. My main motivation for this, besides it being inherent in Bandcamp's business model, is to provide a theft- and loss-proof storage for his music. Losing a MP3 player or phone or headphones will almost certainly happen at some point, and I'm sure he'll be unhappy about that loss. But his music will remain, as soon as he has the necessary hardware again.

****
You raise a very interesting idea, though. Imagine a gift for someone you know (I'm talking to the whole thread here, not any one poster in particular), a gift different from this one I'm giving my nephew, a gift of physical media and the hardware to play it.

Which era of home stereo would you invoke? The 90's, with a silver or black CD, Cassette, AM/FM Radio integrated unit with oddly-shaped speakers, detachable from the main body, with a pile of CDs in bright jewel cases? The 80's, with a boombox (and a stack of D-cell batteries so the boombox can be carried around on a shoulder), and a suitcase full of cassettes? Or earlier (pick your styles), built around a turntable and a milk crate stuffed with vinyl? Something else? What albums would you include?

BigFactory
Sep 17, 2002



ExecuDork posted:

My plan - subject to change, like all plans - is to send my nephew a collection of MP3 files after the initial 2-year album drop (which includes a way for him to listen to this music. More discussion on that later). I'm assuming the MP3 format will be still widely useable in 10 years, but I agree with you that this is by no means guaranteed. How those files get onto the music-playing hardware is an open question, but currently my sister-in-law has a laptop computer and a decent internet connection at home, so if I wanted to send an album of MP3 files today he could listen to it, at least, on her laptop's (presumably not great) speakers.

When I buy music on Bandcamp, I use an account I set up for him; I have my own account that I use for stuff for me but not for him (not much of that, recently, but it means I can follow artists without worrying about age-appropriate concerns). I'll transfer this account to him at some point, and all of that music will be effectively on the cloud, accessible to any internet-connected music-capable device he might have. I'll put everything else into some kind of cloud storage, too, and make sure he'll be able to access it. My main motivation for this, besides it being inherent in Bandcamp's business model, is to provide a theft- and loss-proof storage for his music. Losing a MP3 player or phone or headphones will almost certainly happen at some point, and I'm sure he'll be unhappy about that loss. But his music will remain, as soon as he has the necessary hardware again.

****
You raise a very interesting idea, though. Imagine a gift for someone you know (I'm talking to the whole thread here, not any one poster in particular), a gift different from this one I'm giving my nephew, a gift of physical media and the hardware to play it.

Which era of home stereo would you invoke? The 90's, with a silver or black CD, Cassette, AM/FM Radio integrated unit with oddly-shaped speakers, detachable from the main body, with a pile of CDs in bright jewel cases? The 80's, with a boombox (and a stack of D-cell batteries so the boombox can be carried around on a shoulder), and a suitcase full of cassettes? Or earlier (pick your styles), built around a turntable and a milk crate stuffed with vinyl? Something else? What albums would you include?

I would rely on bandcamp as loss proof storage least of all. They’re probably not going bankrupt anytime soon, and if they do you’ll probably get plenty of notice, but anything could happen.

I don’t think mp3s are going to be obsolete in 10 or even 18 years, but any kind of storage device you put them on now probably will be. If you’re giving him the files in smaller chunks it solves that problem.

ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

013 The Rolling Stones - The Very Best of The Rolling Stones 1964-1971 200527
The first of my "he'll need a solid foundation of everybody-knows-these-song" purchases. Satisfaction, Paint it Black, hell - pretty much the entire album is songs I've heard innumerable times before, and I know are very widely known. Last night I went to a pub trivia thing, the music round was us trying to guess the songs being played, mutated by Finnish Polka. Nothing from the Stones came up, but every song was in this same category of music embedded in popular culture. And I need to add Motorhead to my list (Ace of Spades was the last song in the trivia round). I bought this CD from Amazon, it's not like it's hard to find a Stones album for sale and I'm less worried about directly supporting the artists when they're among the top-10 best selling bands of all time.

https://rollingstones.com/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O4irXQhgMqg
I've always especially liked this song. It's like 'acceptable' emo, 'cuz it's Jagger.

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ExecuDork
Feb 25, 2007

We might be fucked, sir.

Fallen Rib

014 The Music - The Last Dance (live) 200603
I've been a big fan of The Music for a long time, but they have the worst band name ever. Go ahead, throw "The Music" at google and try to find their website, or news about them, or anything. Bad decision, guys.

This is the first (and so far only) "legacy" album I'm giving my nephew - an album I already owned before I started this project. I've been a completionist about The Music, and I bought all their stuff* years ago, including this live compilation & concert DVD. Like the other live albums, this one includes a lot of incomprehensible audience singing/roaring. Maybe at some point I'll augment this with studio tracks so my nephew can learn the songs. The Music is one of my favourite bands, I'm sad they broke up. But some of the post-The Music stuff from the individual former-band members I've seen has been interesting. And I just discovered their Facebook page, which teases at the possibility of a reunion tour in 2022.

*after I started this project I discovered an EP, four tracks, including at least one song that I do not yet have. A mini-project for some time in the future.

https://www.facebook.com/themusicuk/
Apologies for the Facebook link, I gave up googling for "The Music", seriously guys pick a different name.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j_CKkJH_D38
(flashing lights warning)
This is possibly their best-known song, from the DVD of their final concert(s).

ExecuDork fucked around with this message at 02:06 on Apr 15, 2021

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