Thursday, 25 March 2010

Looking For Gold: SXSW WHY? by F**ked Up

A [SXSW] festival pass can cost almost $800 a person. A band gets either wristbands or $250, which is enough to buy enough gas to get your van maybe 15 hours away from Austin, one way. Most bands are from outside that radius, and are well within the range of losing a shit ton of money by coming. In exchange, sxsw gets access to the best bands in the world, every club in Austin, and sponsorship money from all the coolest companies on earth. One of the more creatively heinous examples of branding I learned about this year was the Green Label Sound record label, which is a branding exercise of Mountain Dew soda. When my friend was offered to do a record with Green Label Sound for many thousands of dollars, I was happy to concede that it was a great deal for his specific band. Then I saw the giant 4 panel billboard for Green Label Sound right next to Stubbs on Red River St. Great for Chromeo, Neon Indian and the two other bands on the advert I forget ("great" in the sincere and non-facetious sense) and realized how maybe it was a bit more of a serious issue than I'd thought. Think of all the bands that had to blow their wallets apart to get to their one sxsw showcase, and all the partiers who had to pay to fly or hitchhike from Greenpoint or Plymouth to get to Austin in order to create the cultural critical mass that allowed Mountain Dew to greenlight a giant billboard in the epicenter of American indie rock. Think of why there is so much free beer and cigarettes and energy drinks at sxsw, and why every year there is even more, and why every year there are a dozen more huge shows presented by even bigger companies than last year. It's because you paid your money to go there and see these ads...
...Sxsw then can be seen as an economic battle ground. Our first time down there in 2007, the biggest buzz was about how sxsw was shutting down unofficial venues left and right, presumably because the money and the buzz created by those shows was flowing away from the festival, rather than towards it. The shows were mostly free, which made them irresistible to music consumers tired of needing to buy expensive passes from sxsw to check out cool bands. This is a pretty good analogy for what then started to happen to the entire industry - it became possible for fans who had spent most of their lives buying CD's (that they knew cost 50 cents to produce but cost $17.99 to buy) to download them on the internet for free, and record labels, who started seeing CD sales plummet, immediately starting trying to shut these sites down. While sxsw quickly learned to lay off the free parties and start using them to their advantage, the record industry has yet to figure out how to profit from "illegal" downloading. This year the focus of the festival was free parties only tangentially related to sxsw. Sxsw knows that it's never going to shut down every free party, so it makes more sense just to let them happen, and use the initiatives of the bands and labels and companies throwing these parties make sxsw as a whole more appealing.

The above are just two choice paragraphs from a brilliant blog post.

Posted via web from seaninsound

Monday, 22 March 2010

RE: "The Men From The Press" and "DrownedinSound"

Publication packages
Submission fee
NME, Terrorizer, BBC Music, Drowned in Sound, Quietus


This IS utter bullshit and we have nothing to do with this site. We do not endorse this.

Only heard about this, this afternoon. Seem the mysterious people (if you know who it is, please let me know) behind this, emailed a bunch of DiS writers saying "would you like to be paid to review some records" for a new project and obvs a bunch of them replied saying "yeah, alright, i'll take your money" and they all ended up named on the site. Site was taken down, and then went back up again but with the publications still on there.

All the DiS contributors who've emailed me back so far asked to be removed, as it wasn't what they had agreed to do.

Hell, I sit around listening to mostly not very good unsigned bands for free. I can kinda see where the 'concept' came from, in terms of greasing the wheels to bring certain CDs to the top of the pile and give bands some feedback... Not all ideas are worth running with tho, especially when they're so poorly executed, give the impression you'll get a leg up but generally seems exploitative and EVIL. If you're in a band, don't do this, just do your research of who will like your stuff. People are easy to communicate with.

Then again, who on earth would hand over their money to a website that looks quite so amateur?

Posted via web from seaninsound

Monday, 8 March 2010

SoundCloud - Our friends over at DrownedInSound just came over...

Our friends over at DrownedInSound just came over with this great equation:

Drowned In Sound + SoundCloud + Tumblr = DrownedInSoundCloud. Total Win and immediate follow!

Featuring some of the great tracks and full albums on SoundCloud, approved by DiS.

Follow it here. Great idea, Sean! Thanks a bunch.

Glad you like it. Thanks to Soundcloud and everyone else who has tweeted, facebooked, tumblr’d, blogged, etc about this little mash-up. Glad you like it and there’s plenty more to come.

Posted via web from seaninsound

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Play This Playlist. Tracks from our Recommended Records of 2010 (thus far) | @Spotify

Our community do a lot of wonderful things and this thread compiling recent records people recommend has some great bits in it, so I thought I'd turn it into a playlist.

Nick Cave & Warren Ellis – The Road
The Besnard Lakes – Albatross
Frightened Rabbit – Swim Until You Can’t See Land
The Ruby Suns – Cranberry
Yeasayer – Ambling Alp
Midlake – Rulers, Ruling All Things
Shearwater – Landscape At Speed
Beach House – Zebra
These New Puritans – We Want War
Pantha Du Prince – Stick To My Side
Four Tet – Plastic People
Errors – A Rumour In Africa
Jaga Jazzist – Music! Dance! Drama!
Hot Chip – One Life Stand
Nedry – Apples & Pears
Gil Scott-Heron – New York Is Killing Me
Ali Farka Touré – Doudou
Owen Pallett – Lewis Takes Off His Shirt
Oh No Ono – Icicles
Efterklang – Scandinavian Love
Erland And The Carnival – You Don't Have To Be Lonely
Nana Grizol – Blackbox
Gorillaz – Stylo (Album Version) (Feat. Mos Def and Bobby Womack)
Massive Attack – Saturday Come Slow
Charlotte Gainsbourg – Le Chat du Café des Artistes
Holly Miranda – Sweet Dreams
Tunng – It Breaks
Eels – Mansions Of Los Feliz
Basia Bulat – Sugar And Spice
Shining – The Madness And The Damage Done
Mat Riviere – FYH
Motorpsycho – Close Your Eyes
The Irrepressibles – Knife Song
Fredrik – Flax
Field Music – The Rest Noise
Tindersticks – Harmony Around My Table
Robert Curgenven – Gran Coda Andante
Richard Skelton – Of The Last Generation
Los Campesinos! – We've Got Your Back
Kath Bloom – Is This Called Living?
Ellie Goulding – The Writer
Lindstrøm & Christabelle – Baby Can't Stop
Vampire Weekend – California English
Manchester Orchestra – The Only One
Spoon – Is Love Forever?
Local Natives – Airplanes

Posted via email from seaninsound

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