Record reviews, ruminations

This guy (Mike Allston) has ambitions: listen to his entire CD collection, in order, and review each one.

A-Z 2005: Here we go.
Here we go.
My New Year's resolution for 2005: to listen to my CD's, in alphabetical order.
The 'rules' are explained here

He's now on Stooges, as in Iggy Pop's album, Raw Power, which I coincidentally just bought recently.

CDs shelf one

Really, sounds like a fun idea, though I don't know if I could realistically devote so much time to it. I could eliminate every album that sucks, and everything that was loaned from Audiogalaxy or friends, etc. Still would take a long, long time, even if some just have a sentence long review. Maybe though, I'll start at the Z's, so as to end up with the A's when you click on the category Reviews? What happens if I get a new John Zorn album, do I add an update to my original post? Or make an addendum?

I did catalog all of my discs once, and boxed up quite a few into the attic so as to have a little breathing room in my main office area. I made an excel sheet out of what I found, which has 976 entries. Even though this list is slightly dated (March 2004), might be a jumping off point. Hmmm.

I suppose the question then becomes, how do I make a good iTunes list of albums I've converted? All bit rates will be in the 160kpbs VBR (VariableBitRate) range, I usually rip the entire album, at least initially. I don't think I'd listen to the whole album once through. Say If I listened to a minimum of three tracks, that would be somewhere around 3,600 songs (1,243 albums currently x 3 songs). If each song was approximately 4 minutes long on average, that would equal 80 hours. Yikes! Not a casual undertaking at all, but perhaps I'll give it a go. Of course, Mike Alston has an advantage, he's actually a record reviewer, so speaks the lingo already. Me, not my forte necessarily. Should I give star ratings in lieu of exposition? probably not, but if I actually get into this project, I assume some of the rules will change via necessity or boredom.

(and yes, this page keeps moving in time - I want it to appear at the top of the section)

Update, I suppose the Robert Christgau method sort of applies, albeit in the digitized realm. I don't have quite as many albums as Christgau, of course, but I have more than the average bear. I listen to everything at least twice, but often only as I'm doing other things.

That does not mean that I try to get into every one. Except with records I have been actively anticipating, I work chronologically and with dispatch, sometimes piling records on the changer ten at a time as I read, write, make phone calls, or fart around. If the record makes me want to listen more carefully, good. Usually it doesn't. Sometimes I can tell a record is a Forget It after one cut or one side. More often, it will play through and then find itself in one of the second-listen piles. Eventually, at least half of the rock records I receive are discarded altogether. Others are kept but never really apprehended, just singled out as having some good quality and forgotten. Others, of course, become part of my life. That's what it's all for.

Even though music is my greatest pleasure, the pleasure is often casual. I rarely listen carefully to lyrics or follow a solo note for note unless I'm reviewing something at length or I'm stoned. When I'm stoned, I rarely play records I don't already love...Newer acquisitions, naturally, get disproportionate attention.

...Although any rating system is absurd--always based on short-term judgments and incapable of implying ambivalence, although the comments can mitigate that--there is no reasonable alternative.


About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Seth A. published on December 1, 2005 12:56 PM.

Screengrab for DVDs was the previous entry in this blog.

Senate Summons Pentagon to Explain Effort to Plant News Stories in Iraqi Media is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.


Powered by Movable Type 4.37