Great music, not just dance music, is supposed to get you to feel something. Which is, I think, the point. Daniel J. Levitin had a great Op-Ed piece, "Dancing in the Seats," in the October 26th New York Times examining the question of how profoundly we're affected by the sound of music. Levitin, a neuroscientist, runs the Laboratory for Musical Perception, Cognition, and Expertise at McGill University in Montreal. Levitin observed that "Our species uses music and dance to express various feelings: love, joy, comfort, ceremony, knowledge, and friendship." Oh, and when everything's clicking … Read more
In the midst of an evolution on steroids, the MP3 player just never seems to be comfortable in its own skin. While still suffering an identity crisis with the telephonic aspects of its personality, it's now changing once again to include digital radio, as shown recently by such stalwarts as iRiver and Cowon.
Now, Dutch company Freecom is entering the fray as well with its "MusicPal" player. which promises to deliver 5,000 radio stations as well as MP3 streams wirelessly from a PC or a Mac. It's too big to be carried around, but not … Read more
The music industry continues to take baby steps toward ad-supported music as EMI has become the third major record label to license songs to social-networking site Imeem.
The companies said on Monday that Imeem users will be allowed to upload EMI-produced songs to the site. The ad-supported service is free to users and Imeem plans to share ad revenue with the labels. Sony BMG and Warner Music Group previously cut similar deals with Imeem. Users can post the music to their personal pages and share the music with friends, but the offering only allows them to stream music and doesn'… Read more
On Monday, MTV Networks is set to unveil an initiative to connect its television, online, and mobile presences by helping music fans answer that crucial question--"Who the (expletive) sings that song?"
In other words, MTV Networks, the Viacom division that encompasses the MTV, VH1, and CMT brands as well as a host of other pop culture channels, is aiming to renew its focus on music by bringing lyrics to the forefront. This will begin rolling out in November and is expected to be complete by the middle of 2008.
On television, several of the networks' existing music-related … Read more
We take pride in our diverse catalog on Download Music. Whether it's hip-hop, indie rock, electronica or whatever you're into--we dish out the freshness every week in our newsletter. This week we got a taste of Bob Dylan's new box set (aptly named Dylan) for you to hear. Plus, The Fray just reissued its career-changing 2003 EP The Reason, while Motley Crue unleashed a new live double disc. If you're looking for something new and different, check out Mobius Band, Tunng, and Prefuse 73. Since there's some much to swallow, we made it simple for … Read more
I recently had the opportunity to conduct this interview with Jeff Owens, Label Manager for the Ghostly International record label. To give you some context, Ghostly International is an independent electronic music label based out of Ann Arbor, MI. They've been releasing music since 1999, and their latest release, Matthew Dear's Asa Breed has been drawing praise from tastemakers such as Pitchfork and Filter.
From my perspective, Ghostly is a unique example of an independent record label that is quickly adapting to today's bizarre and demanding music marketplace. Their music can be found everywhere from iTunes, to Borders, to MySpace. Ghostly also interests me because they are a rare combination of a cutting-edge music label that is still heavily invested in releasing their music on vinyl. In fact, their Spectral Sound sublabel has the distinction of selling the majority of their music in either vinyl or MP3 formats, with just a handful of releases on CD.
It's amazing to me that in the past thirty years we've seen the dramatic rise and fall of music formats like cassette tape… Read more
Sonos today issued a flurry of announcements that will further augment the appeal of its Digital Music System: compatibility with two additional premium music subscription services--Best Buy's Digital Music Store (BBDMS) and the revamped Napster; a new software update that adds a handful of useful features, including search; and confirmation of the ZoneBridge BR100 networking accessory. The details, in brief:… Read more
Last week, New Yorker classical music critic Alex Ross wrote about how the Internet is reviving classical music. Among other things, he points to an explosion of blogs and message boards that allow artists to communicate directly with fans and help younger listeners educate themselves before diving into this intimidating realm.
One of the most interesting parts of the piece, though, was his conversation with Naxos Records founder Klaus Heymann. After years of plugging along as an "expensive hobby," Naxos has begun to earn significant revenues selling CDs over the Web--the company earned more than $80 million in … Read more
When AT&T (then Cingular Wireless) introduced its music service late last year we admired the carrier's model. Rather than creating its own music store, as Sprint and Verizon Wireless did, Cingular partnered with online music subscriptions services like Napster Mobile. To us, it seemed like a clean and a simple arrangement, even if you couldn't use Napster to download songs over the air.