Sunday, December 23, 2007

Saving the Compact Disc, One Dollar at a Time

One of my fears is that I'll wake up tomorrow morning, go out to buy a CD, and find a great big hole where the CD shop used to be. More likely the shop will have been converted into a condominium. The people who used to work at the store will yell, "why didn't you help save our business, and save the compact disc format in general?" And I'll cry, and I will be unable to buy that CD I wanted.

So today I went out to buy CDs, just to help worthwhile people keep their jobs, and to support the artists I love, and perhaps also because I enjoy buying CDs.

Here's what I picked up, a mixture of new and used:
  • The Sisters of Mercy, "Floodland." A big part of my wanna-be goth highschool days, this album made me feel so credible...and it's also really good! But its sweeping grandiosity was marred by sludgy CD mastering. This is a "remastered" version, so hopefully it sounds better, and it also contains "Emma" (a much-loved B-side) and an essay about what a jerk Andrew Eldritch is (as if we needed to be told).
  • Erasure, "Erasure." So good they named it twice! Actually I don't know if it's good at all, but it was cheap, and I've never picked up a cheap Erasure CD that I didn't like.
  • The Fall, "Middle Class Revolt." I make it a habit to always buy a Fall CD when I go shopping. I buy them randomly, choosing the first one I see that I don't already own (and avoiding the live albums). I have never regretted doing this, and these 2-CD Castle Music reissues are GORGEOUS. Plus they include essays about what a jerk Mark E. Smith is.
  • Skinny Puppy, "Mythmaker." Probably rotten but I feel the need to give it a chance. I bet Ogre's going to "sing." I bet I'll cringe.
  • Ween, "La Cucaracha." A new Ween album is a cause for celebration. Look past the unshakable college stoner fanbase and you have two brilliant guys, writing music that simultaneously pays tribute to and improves upon every musical style you can think of. Not even Parliament funks like Ween, I'm afraid to say.
  • Adam and the Ants, "Dirk Wears White Sox." I'm not a HUGE fan, but I've heard good things about this album...and it was cheap.
  • The Cardigans, "Long Gone Before Daylight." I didn't buy it when it came out because I thought I'd be disappointed, after the evil lurking moroseness of "Gran Turismo." Now I realize that I like The Cardigans in all their incarnations, so there you go. I bought it.
  • Frank Zappa/The Mothers of Invention, "Freak Out!" Again, I'm not a big fan but I have an immense respect, and supposedly this one is a gem. And it was cheap.

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