Why I Hate The Post-Album Era
January 29, 2012 9 Comments
For example, I have the album Icky Thump by the White Stripes, only I don’t, I downloaded that collection of songs to my iTunes, and they went into the shuffle like all my other songs.
As a result, only just now did I hear “Catch Hell Blues”. I’ve been missing out on “Catch Hell Blues” all this time.
That would have never happened in the Album Era. Back in the Album Era, you’d take your paper route money every weekend, hope on your bike to Tower Records, peruse the “tapes” they had there, maybe 5-10 would catch your eye but you’d have to narrow it down to 1-2 (keeping the others in mind for next week), then after buying them from the pale-skinned girl with the The Cure “The Head On The Door” T-shirt, you’d put the yellow-orange bag on your handlebars and pedal back home as fast as you could.
Once home, you’d run up the stairs to your room, struggle with the ridiculously-hermetically-sealed cellophane, shake off the bits that were sticking to your hand due to static electricity, pop the tape in your “dual” “tape deck” (which was handy for “dubbing”), lie on your elbows on your bed, unfold the 7-page cassette sleeve, squint, and read the lyrics and liner notes all the way through, letting the album play all the way from start to finish, including the filler songs.
And then you’d do it a second time. Because it was unfair to judge a whole album after just one listen. Besides, you needed that second listen to truly appreciate the flow of the song order – the closing song on side 1, the change of mood for side 2, etc.
As a result, having an album without also knowing all the songs just would not have happened. You might not like all the songs, or even most of them, but you’d at least know them.
It’s harder to know music nowadays.