jl8e: (Default)
A while back, I decided to go through my music collection and make a playlist of my top ten favorite songs, with only one song from each artist.

These are the songs I decided were my absolute favorites at the time I made the list. Some of them could be replaced with other songs, likely by the same artist. Odds are that if I made the list today, it'd be similar.

Because I feel like it, I'm sharing them with the world. (Or at least the small subset that reads my LJ.)

In no particular order:
Here there be YouTube links... )
jl8e: (Default)
So I'm bored, and I've been listening my way through Iron Maiden's discography over the last few days, so I decided to order them from worst to best
Read more... )
jl8e: (Default)
From visiting a few Circuit Cities today, I ended up with five new CDs:

Disturbed
Nine Inch Nails
Disturbed
Still more Disturbed
and...
Paramore
jl8e: (Default)
One thing that happens with ripping my old tapes is that I get to hear some really cheesy lyrics.

I think I'd be getting less cheese if I were mainlining Gouda than I do from Europe's song about ninjas.

Which has no idea what ninjas were.
jl8e: (Default)
(This'll probably be the last post on the subject, though it may be updated over time.)

This is a list of all the tapes I'm working on, and their status. Currently, I'm still fighting with Audacity to get it to export something that iTunes will accept with useful metadata. (At the minimum, I want names and track numbers. Is that too much to ask?) (Edit: Apparently. Have given up.)

This is mostly of interest if you're curious about what my musical tastes looked like from 1983 (when I first really encountered pop music) and 1992 (when I moved to CDs). At the time, my source of exposure to music was mostly MTV.

Nowadays, it seems to be Rock Band and Guitar Hero.

I started out fairly random, and moved into hard rock/heavy metal pretty much exclusively. (My tastes have broadened again since.)

Cut to avoid obnoxiousness )
Once I'm done with my tapes, I intend to rip my father's.

Yay!

Nov. 16th, 2008 02:06 am
jl8e: (Default)
Audacity is well-documented enough that I seem to be able to operate it. I'm currently doing a test-run on an album I've already got on CD.

Once this is done, I'll hack it up into tracks, then throw it all away and start again with a non-scratch monkey.

Edit: And the noise removal tool seems to do a good job on tape hiss without me having to fiddle with settings I don't understand. The "attempt to mark track separations" tool got kind of confused by Stairway to Heaven, though.

Tape

Nov. 15th, 2008 10:19 pm
jl8e: (Default)
I've got everything I need to start ripping my tapes. I just went through them for the first time in at least a decade, and there were a lot of surprises:

  • I have way more tapes I never got on CD than I thought I did. (I've got 77 to rip, and another four that I have on CD, but there are differences in the track list.)
  • There's a bunch of stuff in there that I'd completely forgotten I had.
  • There's a few things that I don't remember ever acquiring.
  • There's one tape that, even after looking at it and reading the track list, I still have no memory of the band or any of their songs. They'll probably ring a vague bell once I actually hear them.


This is going to take a while. Hopefully, not too many of the tapes have croaked.
jl8e: (Default)
...which is to sell me music.

This time, it was Skullcrusher Mountain.

Of course, I need to be careful. At least once I found myself thinking "this band's singer has a really pretty voice". Then I realized that it was my band's singer.
jl8e: (Default)
One thing I noticed in the past is that, when I was in a really good mood, the two songs that had the greatest tendency to pop into my head were singularly inappropriate: Black Sabbath's "Paranoid", and Nirvana's "Lithium".

Paranoid's wandered out of that playlist, probably due in part to Rock Band, but Lithium's still there. The Who's "Behind Blue Eyes" may have joined it, but I'm not sure yet -- I've been on a Who kick recently anyway.
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I settle down on the bus, activate all my bluetooth tech, and pick what to listen to on my iPod. Since I have a song wanderring around my head, I pick the playlist I've made for that band...

...and it randomly starts on that song.

OK, I understand the laws of probability say something like this would eventually happen, but it's still kind of creepy.
jl8e: (Default)
Since I forgot to copy my new music onto my iPod until I was packing in a hurry, I just threw the cable in my bag, and synced while I was on the bus.

I now know two things I didn't know before:

  1. There isn't really enough room to use a 17" MacBook Pro while sitting on a NJ Transit bus. (Shocking, I know.)
  2. From the middle of the street, you can pick up a lot of wireless networks. (Seven, in my case, about half running without security.)


The latter makes me wonder if it would be possible to run an internet connection while in motion by having your machine auto-hop from one network to the next, or whether the constant transition from one NAT device to another makes this impossible.

It also makes me wonder if global ad-hoc mesh networking is already possible in dense suburbia.

And, for the NIN fans on my friends list (all maybe one of you), The Slip is ok so far. Worth the download if you're a fan. Probably not the best intro if you don't know them already.
jl8e: (Default)
I've not even been on broadband a week, and I'm already downloading copyrighted music over BitTorrent.

(Nine Inch Nails put a new album up for free download.)
jl8e: (Default)
Trucked Rock Band out to Nunzio's today to get in some actual multi-player play.

I believed the people who say the game's better the more players you have. I didn't realize the fun was an exponential function.

We had the full complement of players. There was a house, and it was rocked.

The game's not perfect by any means, even ignoring the crappy quality control on the guitar controllers (My new one has a flaky tilt sensor), but it's very well-designed. We took a break after playing a bunch of gigs and used our hard-earned cash to buy clothes for the band members, and even that was pretty entertaining.

I'm going to have to try drums or singing next time.

In the not improbable event that there is a next time, is anybody on my friends list potentially interested?

(And before anybody asks, the post title was the name of our band.)
jl8e: (sidekick)
Metal Machine Muzak

(Except for the trademark problem, it would be a good name for a band, though.)
jl8e: (Default)
I just picked up Tom Waits' Orphans, and it struck me how silly the music-buying process has become. I buy these CDs, rip the music onto my computer, load it onto my iPod, and never, ever, look at the shiny plastic things again.

OK, that's not quite true. They occasionally get played in a car, and they're a handy format for lending to friends.

My CD collection has deteriorated into a completely disorganized mess, and it's not worth the time to organize it.

I want to like the iTunes music store, but I don't. It's not just the DRM thing, though that's a lot of it. (If Borders goes under, I can still play Orphans. If Apple goes under, I can't play anything I bought off them.)

Blah.
jl8e: (Default)
I noticed the other day that Iron Maiden have a new album out, and I'm trying to decide whether to buy it sight unseen.

They're a long-time favorite, but, to be honest, they haven't been great since Seventh Son of a Seventh Son and I was in high school when that came out.

Since then:

No Prayer for the Dying: OK, but pretty forgettable really

Fear of the Dark: Pretty good

The X Factor: Didn't like it much at first, but it grew on me over time. Probably the closest they've got to their old quality. It only loses out because Bruce Dickinson quit, and the singer on this album and the next just doesn't stand out.

Virtual XI: I barely remember this one, but what I do remember says "pain".

Brave New World: Dickinson returns, but the album's very patchy.

Dance of Death: Not patchy at all. Pretty consistently weak. I bought this one blind, and really regretted it. I've had no urge to listen to it again.

I suppose that the smart thing to do is to see if it's on iTunes, and listen to some samples, but that's a nuisance.

If it weren't for Brave New World, this'd be easy. There was enough on there to make me think they could get back to at least Fear of the Dark-level quality, even if they're not up to making Powerslave or Piece of Mind any more.
jl8e: (Default)
The things one's mind drifts to while listening to music and preparing dinner. And now I have a blog, my random, inane thoughts get shared with the entire world!

Many years ago, I saw a beer commercial on TV. As beer commercials go, it ought to have been fairly unmemorable - a bunch of people doing (presumably) impressive snowboard moves to some catchy rock music. I assume the idea was to convey the impression that their beer is the beer of choice for happy, active, fun-loving young people.

The only reason I remember it was their choice of music:

Black Sabbath's Paranoid

Now, if one doesn't know the song, the commercial may work just fine. The music is indeed catchy. If one does know the song, however, it kind of undercuts the commercial's intended message:

Finished with my woman 'cause she couldn't help me with my mind
people think I'm insane because I am frowning all the time

[...]
I need someone to show me the things in life that I can't find
I can't see the things that make true happiness, I must be blind


It's a bit dark, in other words. Maybe it'd work for selling Prozac, but I doubt they really wanted anybody to come away from the commercial with the idea that their beer was the beer of choice for massively depressed people.

And it's not like it's an obscure song. Black Sabbath aren't the Beatles, but they're fairly well-known, and this is one of their two or three best-known songs.

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