Apr 11, 2012

Been meaning to blog for a while about the lovely melancholia of Grizzly Bear's Daniel Rossen. Stung into action by a couple of things - the annoucement of the Spotify Play button and an interesting blog by Lucy Jones for The Telegraph.

As technical developments go, the first piece of news hardly ranks alongside the creation of packet-switching by Treorchy's Donald Davies. After all, bloggers have been embedding music and video for a while thanks to Soundcloud, YouTube and the rest. 

It does neatly coincide with The Telegraph blog, which asks whether we are losing our respect for music due to ever-increasing accessibility to it. It's an interesting piece. Lucy Jones does a great job of presenting the argument with clarity and common sense. And she's right - we don't listen to albums in the same way as we did 10 years ago. We rarely invest hours, days, weeks obsessing over one body of work. Nowadays, it's a smash-and-grab raid of the best stuff and then onwards.

Thirty years ago, alternative music fans would be lucky to consume more than ten hours of new music a week, mostly by listening to John Peel on BBC Radio 1. If they read NME, Sounds or Melody Maker, chances are they would read about hundreds of hours of exciting music - and never get the opportunity to hear most of it. So they fell in love with the idea of the music and the music journalists who presented those ideas.

If the price to pay for being immersed in music is the music journalist gets to lose his or her gatekeeper's role, then so be it. I was a teen during the 1980s and can remember what it feels like being starved of good music. Nowadays, I love my irregular adrenalin-fuelled explorations of Spotify, Soundcloud, Beatport and The Recommender.

All of which eventually brings us back to Daniel Rossen and his lovely Silent Hour/Golden Mile EP on Warp. Not being the biggest Grizzly Bear fan on the planet, I would have ignorantly spurned this little gem were it not for Spotify. Have a listen. You might like it.

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