New York times

If SoundCloud Disappears, What Happens to Its Music Culture? -

More on the doom of SoundCloud…

At least the article ends with a little bit of hope.

If SoundCloud Disappears, What Happens to Its Music Culture? -

SoundCloud’s fan base may soon learn this lesson the hard way. The service’s founder, Alexander Ljung, declined to be interviewed for this column, but after Chance the Rapper tweeted about his interest in saving SoundCloud, the men talked on the phone, which Chance reported was ‘‘very fruitful.’’ Ljung agreed, tweeting that for now, SoundCloud was ‘‘here to stay.’’ Whether SoundCloud can last another 10 years remains to be seen. But the moral of its struggle is clear: As digital culture becomes more tied to the success of the platforms where it flourishes, there is always a risk of it disappearing forever.

New York Times - On 'OK Computer," Radiohead Saw the Future: Ours

Jon Pareles writing for the New York Times...

On ‘OK Computer,’ Radiohead Saw the Future: Ours:

It all came true. Twenty years after Radiohead released “OK Computer,” capitalism’s tech overlords have inexorably cultivated a work force and customer base of wish-they-were-androids. Using algorithms that ruthlessly tabulate every available metric, they are determined to maximize efficiency, and they see no profit in human downtime, imperfection or ideals. On “OK Computer,” Radiohead saw it coming, amid all the other alienation and malaise that its songs would enfold in melody and noise.

This is a great write up celebrating the 20 year anniversary of one of my favorite albums from one of my favorite bands. Radiohead saw where music technology was heading and paved the way for future musicians to blur the line between human and robot.

After 20 years, it’s clear that “OK Computer” was the album on which Radiohead most strongly embraced and, simultaneously, confronted the legacy of the Beatles. Radiohead picked up chord progressions (like the pivotal bit of “Sexy Sadie” in “Karma Police”), instrument sounds and ideas on structure from the band, even as it completely inverted its 1960s optimism.

I have often compared Radiohead’s use of technology in the recording studio to the Beatles’ studio practices in their later albums. It’s nice to see Pareles dig into this comparison a little further. 

You can celebrate this amazing album by checking out their reissue, "OK Computer: OKNOTOK 1997 2017,” which is a remaster of the original CD, includes eight B-sides for EPs they released in the 90’s, and recordings of never before released songs from the “OK Computer" era. 

Click here to listen on Apple Music.

My Headphones, My Self -

This is a fun article from back in December…

My Headphones, My Self -

You see them on every block: people being propelled through their routines listening to their own individualized soundtracks, with the outside world serving as a stage set.

Headphones are now fashion statements. Status symbols. Fetish objects on par with luxury watches and limited-edition Nikes.

I also liked this quote:

“Headphones are the front line of urban social defense,” said Julie Klausner, a comedian, actor and writer. “I’m introverted and socially anxious by nature. My worst nightmare is sitting next to someone on a plane or someone who wants to strike up a conversation on an elevator.”