2024-03-03 11:40:24 UTC 永久链接

omg have you heard the new ariana grande album? it's so good. it's called sweetener. you have to listen to it.

— cel, probably like 2017 or something

so there's a new ariana grande single and it's her first in over 3 years i think? i've listened to it a couple times now and it just sounds like ariana grande which is like idk whatever. but girly pop when i went to check it out on my music player i saw THIS

qobuz screenshot

i'm now thinking of all the permutations that must be capitalised upon to get all the revenue from the youtube edits. where is my yes, and? (a cappella sped up) and my yes, and? (slowed extended mix instrumental edit)? hello????

just reminded me of how sad the state of music culture (for most people) 'nowadays' is. i actually don't know if it was much better in the past since i was literally not alive and also engaging with that until the last decade or so i guess lol. it would be cool to hear if there's more to this idea of enshittification than rose tinted nostalgia. i'm pretty sure it's a thing but hey.

everything is driven by the recommendation algorithms people use on their cheap-ass streaming services, and as a result the kind of music that is being made is very much catered to survive in this scene. the fact that the main source of marketing for music is tiktok makes this issue even worse. probably the most exacerbated example of this would be kpop, in which songs can quite literally be released as little more than an undeveloped hook, and regular mini-albums at short lengths are all the rage. exhibit a: literally anything by NewJeans.

get up by NewJeans

there's also another thing i've been thinking on lately, which is i feel that recommendation algorithms inherently destroy culture due to lack of human decision or will. people used to go by culture journalism (F for pitchfork) or word of mouth, as well as literally sharing physical media or files. there would be more intention put into what we listen to. the fact that youtube-recommended-core exists is somewhat indicative of this, and shows the dangers of homogenisation that algorithms can bring. btw i don't want to say algorithms are wholly bad, mainly that they are horrible as a primary source.

where has the hunt for a good album gone? there is no risk/reward factor any more. it's too easy to never listen to a wide variety of music as you will perpetually be fed songs that are similar to that which you already like. without algorithms you have to sit aside and think about your music habits. you have no choice other than to manually look through new releases where u will inevitably be confronted with genres and artists u have never considered before. or you actually have a good reason to seriously think on that album your friend recommended or lent to you. if you can even get ahold of it anyway due to the differences in platform/drm.

which brings me to the next difference in consumption pattern, streaming versus owning. streaming from a seemingly unlimited library is a completely different dynamic to owning albums. when buying and/or downloading music we are forced to appreciate what we have rather than the unlimited depths of that streaming platform. we usually engage with full releases rather than just bits. it's easier to form connections even with garbage simply because we were stuck with it. it's what we had at the time. obtaining music in this way is slower and forces us to properly process that we once chose instead of immediately moving on to the next thing dropped in front of us.

this also doesn't even begin to cover the fact that the rise of streaming services has in fact been bad for artists (unless you are with a big label that has their own agreement with the service) and that it's all inevitably going to tumble since it's wholly unsustainable and unprofitable.

where do we go from here? honestly, the only solution i have felt contends is piracy. transfer files to your friends, get on soulseek, torrent, torrent, torrent. if u can afford it, buy albums you love direct from the artist. once album a month is already more money to artists than u give through paying for a streaming service and really only contributing to upholding this garbage system. of course there are also even more arguments for piracy, most notably the fact that it remains essentially the only reliable way to archive media and allow it all to stand the test of time, in addition, it's totally just a better user experience than dealing with whatever the fuck drm is. piracy democratises music listening too. people in places where an album isn't available or sold or too expensive can access it and enjoy it, which is the best tbh.

i guess i'm going to try writing about music i love (and hate) on this blog a bit when i feel like it now. i don't really know how to write about this stuff well but i'll never get good if i don't try. also this is now the second mention of ariana grande on this blog. on my second post. i guess this is an ariana grande hate blog now. i will make sure the next post is positive in some way before the vibes of this place get rancid.

p.s. (sadly) nobody will ever make an equivalent to the coolness that is taping a shitty quality cassette mixtape for your friend. i wonder if techbros would put playlists on the blockchain and make playlist nfts oh wait they wont because blockchains are total rot and would never have that kind of usability however dumb of an idea it is


2022-04-27 08:48:30 UTC 永久链接

i want to write something about rot. why not? i think it's become my favourite word over the last few months. it's so versatile.

what is rot? well i tried to look it up and i hit a paywall. this is a good representation of rot. it is pure decay. it is horrid yet undeniable. there is no way to tell at a glance at what point it became rot, and whatever it used to be, was surely destined for this end. perhaps it was always rotted to begin with. there is no way of knowing, only that now, at this time, it is surely rot.

rot in my opinion represents a state of post-cringe, a state of absurdism. how is rot post-cringe? it is something so bad that when you experience it it no longer triggers your cringe response, you simply accept it for what it is. this is most definitely absurd. there is no more meaning to it but rot. there is no interpretation, there is no saving it from this state, it is past the point of no return.

how can we solve rot? in my opinion there is only one solution: abandonment of that which is rotted. rot is not worth saving. however we can start anew, and from the rot allow that which is new to grow, even if it shall most likely reach the same end.

the worst kind of rot is that which pretends to not be completely rot, which is propped up by some as being salvageable, or in some cases, perfectly acceptable and maybe even a net positive. some examples of this include:

  • beaurocracy
  • power structures
  • money
  • ariana grande
  • neoliberalism

it is undeniable these are rotted to the core.

i hope this aids in you understanding this term. maybe now you see rot in a different light, and that it could help you in making sense of the world.

— cel