Friday, December 9, 2011

Make It Pretty Inside and Out, The Music Experience

I realize that I talk about vinyl a lot. In fact, just at the sound of a v word leaving my mouth, I can feel everyone around me roll their eyes. I am quickly becoming one of those crotchety old people who lament the better days when everything was cooler.

If I was in a band (someday, when I can play a whole song without stopping at a mistake, apologizing, and then starting over), I would hate digital music. I mean, I constantly buy digital music (Amazon MP3 is my friend) and I would love that people are listening on their iPods or whatever, but I would feel robbed of the ability to present the music as an experience.

Album artwork is completely lost as a thumbnail. I fear that without having books of lyrics and photos to look through, people are not paying enough attention to the music itself. Plus, iPods let you shuffle around too easily, missing the complete, straight through feel of an album. Music has become a background to tv shows and something to amuse you in the car. It feels like the art of the music listening experience is lost with digital, which is also why Amazon Vinyl is my other good friend.

With that said, I tip my metaphorical hat of gratitude to both The Avett Brothers and Pearl Jam for what arrived in my mailbox last week. Check it…

Receiving both of these was like an unexpected Christmas present: the unpacking, the surprises on each page, the jokes on the album labels, and the oh so beautiful artwork (album artwork has always been one of my favorite things). From looking at these sets, both artists respect and think about their music and the packaging. To me, that’s just as important as the music itself. Also, to be fair, Pearl Jam’s packaging is always amazing – the CD version of Vs. has long been one of my favorites.

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