Category Archives: Music

AUDIO VIDEO DISCO

(Sorry, no video or disco occurring in this blog)

HI THERE!

So this article is from the Stone Age (2015) but I just found it now, so we’re going to take a look at it. For six songs, there are three samples provided (three for each song, that is). The task is to pick which of the three samples is of the highest audio quality.

SO.

I’m going to listen to each audio sample on 1) my $5.99 Koss headphones (the ones I use for walking) and on 2) my massive $600-ish Sennheisers (the ones that I freak out over nearly every day because they’re so damn good). I’m going to see if it’s easier to assess audio quality on the Sennheisers when compared to the Koss.

The tricky part is trying to be as objective/unbiased as possible for each song while still having to listen to each with both headphones. So rather than check my answers as I go, I’m going to first write them down for the Koss and then for the Sennheisers and then check my correctness. This will at least in part mitigate the issue of knowing which answers are correct as I go through the second round.

So let’s go!

Round 1: $5.99 Koss Headphones
Here are what I think are the best quality versions for each song:

  • Speed of Sound: sample 1
  • Mozart: sample 2
  • There’s a World: sample 2
  • Tom’s Diner: sample 3
  • Tom Ford: sample 3
  • Dark Horse: sample 3

[I waited about an hour between this round and the next and am not looking at my above answers as I do this process for the Sennheisers; I don’t remember what my above answers were]

Round 2: $600 Sennheiser Headphones
Again, here are what I think are the best quality versions for each song:

  • Speed of Sound: sample 3
  • Mozart: sample 1
  • There’s a World: sample 3
  • Tom’s Diner: sample 1
  • Tom Ford: sample 3
  • Dark Horse: sample 1

Ready for the results?

Score with Koss: 2/6
Score with Sennheisers: 5/6

Hahaha, wow. Wasn’t expecting that much of a difference!

Edit: turns out there’s a follow-up article. 29.7% of quiz-takers got a 2/6 score and only 4.5% of quiz-takers got a 5/6 score. Interesting!

Do you want to hear what Boney M’s “Rasputin” sounds like if it were sung by stoned demons?

Curious now, eh?

I can’t decide if this is hilarious or terrifying. And the first 1:20 sounds like it should be in a Breaking Bad episode.

O H   T H O S E   R U S S I A N S . . .

Life Sucks Right Now

So have something sublime.

This is best served on a pair of Sennheisers, but if you don’t have Sennheisers, any old headphones with good bass will do.

(Also, god this song sounds so much better when it’s not played at 35 BPM.)

Oliver Tree is a Weird Dude and I Love Him

I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned him on here before, but I want to mention him again ’cause he’s great. I first heard of him through his music video for “Hurt,” which YouTube recommended for me for some reason.

Turns out all his music videos are weird and fantastic.

And a new one (which is why I’m blogging about him today):

I love his pants.

Tunes to Soothe Your Pandemic-Riddled Mind

So now that I’m no longer working on my Decade of Music project, I guess there won’t be any more end-of-year song summaries.

FEAR NOT!

I will periodically provide you with updates about groovy tunes that I find post-project.

Let’s do one now!

  • Blinding Lights by The Weeknd (of course. I’m in love with this song.)
  • Stupid Love by Lady Gaga
  • Karma by AJR (relatable)
  • Shout by Empara Mi (this song fits a good plot thread in last year’s NaNo so well, you have no idea)
  • Woohoo by Raghav (he’s a Calgary dude!)
  • Caution by The Killers (like every The Killers song, it’s got that sad, frantic yearning tone behind it. And for some reason that shot with the birds along with those chords at 3:56 just murdered my heart.)
  • Unless It Hurts by Galantis

FIVE STAR ALERT! FIVE STAR ALERT!

Oh my god, I love this song.

It’s got such awesome energy to it. And it is now the first Five Star post-Decade of Music Project.

So that’s kinda cool.

(Seriously, I’ve already listened to this like 80 times.)

So…Music

So I’m still working on summing up the results of my Decade of Music project (yeah, yeah, I know, I’m way behind. Sue me.) and I think my favorite part is going back through all 3,650-ish songs and finding all those frisson-inducing moments. I’m not going to list any right here ‘cause SPOILERS (though the big ones are already in past blogs), but I just love re-finding all those moments and then blasting them over the Sennheisers.

I mean, I love blasting everything over the Sennheisers, but frisson-inducing moments induce so much more frisson through those sexy, sexy headphones that I just can’t help it.

YAY.

(The review is coming soon, I promise.)

Here is Vivaldi’s “Summer” played on an organ.

You’re welcome.

Presto starts at 8:18. That deep note at 10:26 is nnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnf.

I should never be let around an organ. All I’d do is find the deepest note and play it as loud as possible, shattering all eardrums in a 10-mile radius.

Idaho

I’m feeling super homesick today for whatever reason.

That’s not an uncommon occurrence; every once and a while I just really miss Moscow.

Anyway, during my usual Reddit browsing this evening, I came across a post on the r/Idaho subreddit asking about songs that featured Idaho. A lot of them were pretty good, but my favorites have to be “Idaho” by Reckless Kelly and “Idaho” by Gregory Alan Isakov. Crying happened.

Idaho may be a backwards, Republican, redneck haven, but it’s my home and I miss it.

It’s AQUARIUS SEASON

Eminem is 47 years old.

Eminem just released a new surprise album, Music to be Murdered By.

One of the songs, “Godzilla,” features some of the fastest rapping I’ve ever heard. Check it:

Apparently in that fastest verse (starting at 2:57), he’s rapping 10.65 syllables per second. That’s ridiculous.

Eminem’s still got it.

I’M SORRY, WHAT?

A cover of a Coldplay song with brass (and saxes)? Sign me up.

This sounds so freaking cool.

Sorry, that’s all I’ve got today.

Claudia’s 365 Days of Music: Year 10 – A Review

Holy crap, y’all, it’s the final year of this project!

Before we get to the stats, let me mention again (since it’s been a few days since the actual blog post about it) that my thorough “Decade of Music” review is coming at the end of January (hopefully). I would like to do it sooner than that, but I just haven’t had the time to compile all of the information I want to for the review. I’ve been way too busy with work.

A disappointment, I know, but hey – we all know I’m really good at being a disappointment.

ANYWAY. Expect that later. For now, let’s just look at 2019:

Total songs: 365
Total time: 23 hours and 59 minutes
Mean song length: 3:45

The Five Stars
Listed in order of acquisition!
Airwaves by Airplanes
Ice Cream by MIKA
Canada Dry (Acoustic) by Barenaked Ladies
Send Me On My Way (Jesse Bloch Bootleg) by Rusted Root
When I Need a Friend by Coldplay
Door by Caroline Polachek

The five most beautiful/touching songs of the year:
When I Need a Friend by Coldplay
Underneath the Stars by VOCES8
Air on the G String by Bach (played on the Whitworth Hall Organ)
The Sound of Silence by VOCES8
Lully Lulla Lullay by VOCES8

The Overall Top Five
Canada Dry (Acoustic) by Barenaked Ladies
This song is simultaneously chill, uplifting, and melancholy. I’ve really gotten into the Barenaked Ladies this year and this song, from their newest album “Fake Nudes,” is definitely my favorite. And I like this live/acoustic version better than the album version because of the piano. So good.

Ice Cream by MIKA
AAAAAAAA MIKA IS BACK! A hot, sexy, summer song with a very catchy chorus. Love it.

Send Me On My Way (Jesse Bloch Bootleg) by Rusted Root
The bass in this song is nnnnnf. This remix takes a pretty chill song and gives it a lot more exciting energy. 1:33 goes BOOM!

When I Need a Friend by Coldplay
Chris Martin has a perfect voice. The only way to improve upon it, as this song demonstrates, is to give him the backing of a choir. This song is just stunningly beautiful.

Door by Caroline Polachek
Caroline has a captivating, haunting voice. The way it’s layered and used in this song makes this song haunting as well. I love the chords in the chorus.

YAY!

Again, stay tuned for the Decade of Music project review…hopefully at the end of the month!

I am a Disappointment (What Else is New?)

So as I’m sure you’re all aware (assuming you read my blogs on a semi-regular basis), my Decade of Music project is due to end on December 31st. That means I will have a decade’s worth of new songs (3,652 songs, to be precise, with the leap years) and thus will have a lot of cool stuff to share with you all, including my absolute favorite songs of the decade, most beautiful songs of the decade, top music videos, etc. Not to mention all the STATS, too!

However, I have not been very vigilant with keeping my Decade of Music songs super organized. That is, due to various computer changes over the course of the decade, not all my songs have rankings, not all of them have the correct genres attached…that kind of thing. And I don’t have one big master list of the songs, either. I have yearly Word documents, but all those contain are the songs and artists, not any other details such as genre or my ranking of the songs.

I was hoping to get a master list together by the end of the year so that I could share all the cool summary info with you starting in the beginning of 2020, but I’ve been so busy with work that I just haven’t had the time to make said master list.

So here’s the plan: rather than try to half-ass my end of the decade music summary and basing it off of what I know off the top of my head about my songs but get it to you at the start of January, I’m going to delay it a little bit to make sure I have time to get that comprehensive list done, sorted, and properly analyzed for all stats-related things.

Would I prefer to give you the summary at the beginning of next year? Of course. But I don’t want to half-ass it; I’ve spent a whole decade on this project and it would feel lousy trying to throw something together at the last minute when I feel like this project deserves a much more comprehensive exploration and discussion.

So if it’s cool with y’all, the Decade of Music project’s summary will be a little late. Maybe end of January or sometime in February.

Is that cool? Please say yes.

I’m sorry.

IIIIIIIIIIIT’S MASHUP TIME!

I like this one.

The tradition is to make DJ Earworm’s yearly mashups my last downloaded song for the year, but it’s tempting to break that tradition this year by making it my download for December 30th and make his decade mashup my download for December 31st, since that would be the last day of this DECADE-LONG project.

(I can’t believe it’s almost over!)

Oh, here is said decade mashup:

Also, Piano Guys + tons of Christmas lights = yay.

This makes me so freaking happy. I love these guys.

Are You a Taco? ARE YOU???!?!?!!?

So this is today’s song:

Why in the hell does this sound so…familiar? It feels like I heard this song a long, long time ago, as it is awakening that part of my brain that’s like “ZOMG FAMILIAR CHORDS AND RHYTHMS AND LYRICS!”

I can’t place it. But it sounds really familiar.

That’s all, sorry. I’ve been waaaay too busy this semester to put much effort into blogging (or into anything else, really, including maintaining my sanity).

When I was younger, so much younger than today / I never was concerned with BLOGS ON SATURDAY

Hi. So as a bit of a “follow up” to yesterday’s blog about music, let’s do another blog about…

…drum roll…

MUSIC!

Because I never blog about music, as we all know.

Anyway.

Since I spend a decent amount of my spare time galloping around YouTube in a vain attempt at finding something that will, at least momentarily, make me forget about the fact that I am Incurably Sad™, I came across Steve Cruickshank’s channel. On said channel, there are a bunch of “negative harmony” covers of popular/well-known songs.

What is “negative harmony?” Um, I’m not 100% sure. I’m not a music person (as far as things like music theory or technical musical terms go), so I probably don’t understand it fully from what I’ve read. But it sounds like it involves taking the key of a song, finding the “axis” of the key, and the reflecting all the notes across the axis. This preserves the “weight” or “effect” of the notes since they are all the same in relation to each other and the axis, but are just different notes. Here is a good explanation with some visualization:

Anyway, here are some examples of negative harmony covers from Cruikshank’s channel.

Cool, huh?

Baby’s First Dissonance

This video makes a lot of good points regarding how terrible we are at introducing music to children.

Reason #5633 why I shouldn’t have kids: I would Sunn O))) the hell out of them and they’d probably grow up with some sort of weird complex.

Edit: On another note (HA! Get it? Music? Note? I’ll see myself out), here is Sleigh Ride in 7/8 time. Super cool.

An Underrated Song:

“Ariel” by Dean Friedman.

I first heard this song back in 2010 and it was my download of the day on April 1, 2010. It’s been coming up on shuffle quite frequently, which has made me remember how good of a song it is.

It’s just so chill and it tells a story, which I always like in a song.

Anyway. Just thought I’d put it here for anyone who hasn’t heard it!

UGH SO PRETTY

VOCES8 is fantastic, and this is such a beautiful, melancholy song.

They all have such wonderful chemistry as a singing group, holy crapples.

Good Lord, Coldplay.

This song. This song.

How do you make Chris Martin sound any better than he does on his own? Back him up with a freaking choir.

This gives me serious chills. It’s so beautiful.

Edit: this one is good, too. Probably my second favorite.

WELL, WELL, WELL…

*opens iTunes*
*observes*

11-23-2019

Is that a new Coldplay album I see!?

TO THE SENNHEISERS!

I can only download one of these songs per day and it’s GOING TO HURT MY SOUL I NEED ALL OF THEM NOW.

Oliver Tree is Fantastic

Apparently this whole music video was done for teh memes but I love it anyway and the song is super catchy.


He’s such a weird dude, it’s great.

Also, those pants are everything.

Edit:

Take 5…IF YOU CAN!

Hi.

So Dave Brubek’s “Take Five” is a song you’ve probably heard before, even if you didn’t know what it was.

One interesting thing about it (as you may have noticed) is that it is in 5/4 time, which is not a super common time signature…though it might be for jazz, I’m not sure. I don’t know jazz very well.

ANYWAY, today I found this playlist, which takes “Take Five” and splices out one or more beats (or adds beats) to produce weirder and weirder results.

  • Take Four sounds like someone trying to sight-read something written in 5/4 time and failing miserably at it (come on, band friends, we’ve all been there).
  • Take Three sounds…nice! I like it.
  • Take Two also sounds nice! Sounds like something that would play in a fancy lounge during a movie scene.
  • Take One: somebody fORGOT TO TURN OFF THE SAXOPHONE (also, who let an angry gerbil bang around inside a bass drum for like a minute?).
  • Take Six sounds like a guy who has to do a saxophone solo but the band is playing in 3/4 time and he’s in 4/4 time and no wait is it 5/4 time huh no wait cut time jesus where in the actual fuck is the downbeat.
  • Take 0.25 should win a Grammy.

I love this kind of stuff, it’s great.

 

DJ Earworm: 2009 vs. 2019

Since I started my Decade of Music project back in 2010, I’ve made it a point to have each  year’s December 31st song be that year’s United State of Pop mashup by DJ Earworm (with his 2009 mashup actually being the first song I downloaded in 2010).

Well, almost as if it was meant to line up with my decade-long project, he’s released short (~1:30-minute or so) mashups of ten 2009 songs with ten 2019 songs.

And they are FANTASTIC.

I love this kind of stuff, yo. It activates my happies (and not a lot of things do that these days).

My favorites:

  • Lady Gaga – Pokerface vs Ava Max – Sweet but Psycho
  • Black Eyed Peas – Boom Boom Pow vs BTS – Boy with Luv
  • Taylor Swift – Love Story vs Taylor Swift – You Need to Calm Down (these sound so good together!)
  • MGMT – Kids vs Billie Eilish vs Bad Guy
  • Flo Rida – Right Round vs Lil Nas X – Old Town Road
  • Beyonce – Single Ladies vs Ariana Grande – Thank U, Next

Holy craps.

I randomly stumbled upon this song and now I can’t get it out of my head.

This remix is super catchy, yo.