The death of Journalstalking...


30 nov 2008, 18:16

I have come to the conclusion that the art of journal stalking on has died. There was once a time, when the front page showed the last 50 journals written, that there was a recommended journal feature and that it was easy to find relevant and interesting pieces to read. Socialising here has now moved to groups and shoutboxes and the journals are simply reduced to a place for people to record all sorts of memes with the mere point of linking to as many artists as possible.

It is for this reason that I have decided I am not going to stop using my journal, but as it's so much harder to discover I'm going to be more free in what I write about and not keep it (as I have mostly intended to date) to music related topics.

So, basically, first things first, an update. I haven't really written many journals recently at all with the exception of my review of Muse in Argentina, where I spent my summer.

I had a great time there. The people were amazing the place is really nice. My only regret is that I didn't spend more time travelling, but that was mostly due to it being winter there which rendered Patagonia, where I wanted to go, relatively unaccesible.

While I was there I also had the opportunity to go and see Carajo, an Argentine band who are pretty good, though I tend to prefer their acoustic stuff.

The gig was really good. It was in a small venue, but one which was really nice with a balcony upstairs with tables and sofas to sit at and watch the gig.

Afterwards I was taken to meet the band at the after party as the woman who I went with is the Grandmother of the bands drummer. The band members were all really nice but we didn't stay long though and I felt as though I was intruding a bit.

I hame to admit, that I wasn't too impressed with Argentine music, which I heard there. I found that in general there was too much 80s rock and they have to realise that the rest of the world has passed on from Pink Floyd and The Beatles which is the first reaction of most people there to mention when you say that you're English.

They also have terrible party music. They dance to a genre called in which every ssong seems to have the same base tune which is rapped over in Spanish.

I did howerever discover Los Fabulosos Cadillacs while I was there who are a pretty good band from Buenos Aires, and I also got to listen to a fair amount of Pink Floyd, The Beatles and Dream Theatre as the family I was staying with were relatively big fans of those bands. I have to say, that from watching P.U.L.S.E I have gained an understanding of why Pink Floyd are so popular. Watching the DVD made me really want to be there, and I think I'm going to try to make an effort next time a a band like Pink Floyd or the Rolling Stones come to London.

I have even found myself recently regretting not going to the £5 Metallica concert back in Sptember, and especially the Sigur Ros concert last weekend where apparently the band were separated from the audience by a sheet of rain which had images projected onto through out the set.

I'm also really pissed off at the moment that I didn't manage to get a ticket to The Killers concerts coming up in February which I really want to go to. To be honest, I really want a standing ticket, but I couldn't get any. So I'm going to go along on the day and try to get a ticket on the door for a reasonable price.

I'm Also really anticipating seeing Pendulum on Friday which should be really good. Everybody I have spoken to about them have said they're amazing live and as I've been to so few gigs this year, (and even fewer large gigs) I have high hopes for it. Manu Chao have also set a date for the 16th of December which I'm really thinking about going to, remebering how good they were last year when I saw them, and god do I need some concerts after a string of sparse and generally unmemorable gigs throughout 2008. I need another stint like that of May/June 2007 in which I saw Malajube, Johnossi, The Sounds, Mando Diao and Muse.

In development of music finding, I have been feeling quite stilted this year, as I feel the only worhtwhile album of 2008 I have heard is In Silico and the minor possiblity of Coldplays album from which I have actually found I like about 4 tracks. This means I have mostly been discovering older music with more in depth delves into the likes of Radiohead (though still not very deep) and just rediscoveries throughout my music collection with the likes of oxygene and The Knife.

I'm hoping that 2009 will be a much better year, with new releases from Karin Dreijer of The Knife, Mando Diao and The Kissaway Trail on the cards. I am especially looking foreward to the Mando Diao album as I can't wait to see where they are heading after their very county-esque styled Never Seen The Light Of Day

I did actually buy a couple of albums over the past couple of weeks, those being Northern Blues and The Laerie Faeries album which they released last weekend.
Neither of these albums are up to what I expected at all. I bought Northern Blues on the fact that I love the first 2 songs from it, which I've got to know through my recommendations radio which are amazing, and the fact that I have his latest solo album RainawayTown which is pretty good. The The Laerie Faeries album for me jsut has a poor selection of tracks, with too many vocals, and is over produced for the bands style and especially compared to the live Cd which I have which brings the dance/gipsy music side out much better. I think the CD also suffers from the lack of having a saxophonist.

I have also been listening to a fair amount of Chairlift as I absolutely love their songs Bruises and Evident Utensil from their most recent album Does You Inspire You. I think the main reason I love them are the lyrics which are so absurdly sweet in Bruises that they can't help but make you smile!

I also discovered a couple of what look to be promising bands once I check them out further from the iTunes free single of the week. They have recntly been doing really well and released songs by The Though Alliance and Black Gold, both of which I really like.

I think part of the stilting of music discovery and listening has to do with having started uni in October where I have seminars for 7 hours a day 5 days a week meaning I get very little time to listen to music other than the trip there and back, which only acounts for 2-3 hours a day. I also am using small portable speakers to listen to music from my PC now, instead of the stereo I previously had, and the sound quality of just tends to put me off listening to alot of music.

These combined factors led me to bu a new iPod about a month ago, as I was fed up of my old iPod which was too small for my music collection and was on the blink and would only give me sound out of the left earphone.

I'm still not satisfied with my new iPod and I really feel that their quality peaked about 2 years ago with the 5.5 Generation ipods and now on the classics the touch wheel doesn't function as well, the menu systems are just plainly retadarded and the volume is capped to low.

I also have my suspicions that they ruin headphones, as in the 2 weeks since I got it, it has destroyed the left bud of 3 different pairs of earphones. Following this, I broke the ipod set by getting it trapped in a drum I was carrying and so I decided on Friday that enough was enough and I'd go and lash out I nice big pair of Sennheiser headphones which say "fuck-off, I'm listening to music", and they really are amazing, though I now can actually hear a difference of encoding on my tracks which I'm not to happy about, especially on Welcome to the Black Parade (yes, I'm embarrassed to say I do own, and like The Black Parade).

I have already managed to lose the 6mm adaptor though, which I'm not happy about as part of the reason I bought that specific pair of headphones was because of their recomendations for DJing and I required a pair for DJing on Friday as (while very drunk) I had volunteered to DJ at my uni bar, but you can't hear anything from the DJ booth and need your own set of headphones.

I thoroughly enjoyed DJing, though I found that doing it with MP3 CDs is a bit tricky finding songs, and I had relatively small choice of tracks. I would like to do it again.

One final thing... I got a email through my uni a few days ago about the next Eurovision entry: Andrew Lloyd-Webber is going to write it and they're trying to show it like a piece from a musical. It actually disgusts me how they ruin such a potentially good show.


  • emergingsynergy

    Nice job... And I agree with your assessment of the situation with Journals under the new design. It is unfortunate that they are no longer prominently on the front of one's page, because they get lost now and buried on artist and group pages . . . buried by long lists tagged to artists but without meaningful content or even evident creative effort. I hope your writing here will help change that.

    5 dec 2008, 13:20
  • joewatson406

    "I hame to admit, that I wasn't too impressed with Argentine music [...] . I found that in general [...] they have to realise that the rest of the world has passed on from Pink Floyd and The Beatles" You say what? I quite like the sound of this Argentine music :). I wasn't familiar with the old, as have joined since the change, but think I can see your point.

    8 dec 2008, 11:22
  • marshee

    It is still possible to journal stalk, but it's a real challenge to find them. It is fun to DJ, though I have to burn much more stuff to CDs before I can get really good, and I want to learn beat matching etc. You really should talk to your club then! You can scrobble from new nanos, or at least you should be able to with the latest software version... though considering you have mac, maybe you can't. I am planning another journal as I have to talk all abotu my Pendulum gig, Mando Diaos new song and what ever else pops into my head. You should do one too.

    18 dec 2008, 16:38
  • marshee

    oh I've given up on social side of somehow, it's been killed off.

    15 okt 2009, 18:32
  • marshee

    I actually have more or less... I use my facebook status box alot for just random thoughts, and also I have too keep a journal for uni, but I'm really bad regularly doing that. Maybe I should start on here again... just for gig reviews as I have a few coming up. Do you still blog?

    18 okt 2009, 16:00
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