December Ain't No Hammock
by Dan
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.


Broadcast - "Unchanging Window / Chord Simple"



The Dexateens - "Fingertips"

This song is slippery, suspicious, hazardous. The timing slips in and out of the beat just enough to wake you up, to make you reach for the guitar. So you lurch forward and your breath comes out like a harmonica, and then you gasp that c-chord gasp as you watch that last drum, that flat bangy bastard, beat all the other instruments to death. [Buy from Amazon UK]

Posted by Dan at December 13, 2006 1:24 AM

We're family here, so I feel like I can say this without worrying about ruffling feathers: posting that Karen O track seems to me to be of dubious ethics. It would be one thing if she had released this herself to tha world wide internets, but that ain't the word on the street. These are completely unfinished bedroom demos that some guy happened to find, and while they might be a curio at some point down the road for any uberfans out there, the fact remains that it is not something that she (or any artist, for that matter) could have conceivably ever wanted to be revealed in this way.

Making a demo like this public should be exclusively up to the artist. And in this case, where it's already leaked, I think the least we could do is ask ourselves if posting it is something the artist would appreciate. Prob'ly not, right?


Posted by Andy at December 13, 2006 11:28 AM

Andy - you convinced me. the 46 seconds are gone.

but consider this: if I happened across some sketches made by, say, Banksy, that he had made in preparation for a painting or work that he never finished, and then i scanned them and posted them on here, would that be any different q I think it would be more acceptable somehow, and yet kind of identical. we understand that they are unfinished works, its just sometimes interesting to see all parts of the creative process. however, i took it down because I was reminded of a certain arcade fire christmas ep, because when it was leaked, I was worried certain people would think it was me (and they did, and it wasnt) so I sympathize with the unleashing of the unwanted and how that can cause anxiety. I still like the ditty, though.

Posted by dan at December 13, 2006 11:42 AM

That Broadcast track is awesome. Love it. Sounds like it got lifted from a 1970s film's non-diegetic-sound resolution. Tracking back out of a park, maybe, as he and she approach each other, each wondering whether to hug.

Posted by Tuwa at December 13, 2006 12:14 PM

An interesting question, Dan. Every artist is different, but one thing that remains somewhat constant is the desire to have control over the work until it is finished and in a form deemed worthy of the public's attention. (Whether or not it's actually worthy is another question altogether.) This is a little different than listening to a leaked finished version of an album, since we're talking about something that could hardly even be considered a first draft (however charming it may or may not be).

It's slightly easier to think about how this might go down if it were a deceased artist in question. If someone found early scribbles from Da Vinci or some drafts from Hemingway it's easier to see the good in making it available to the public. Museums do that all the time. For artists that are still working (or even simply still alive), no matter how interesting it might be to peek behind the curtain, I'd maintain that some right of refusal should still be reserved. In the scenario you raise regarding Banksy, I have no idea how he'd feel about it. But i can bet you that either way he'd feel a whole lot better about it if someone were to ask his permission first! Without permission, it's a bit like watching someone through the window. For the viewer it may be interesting/tittilating/frightening, but for the viewed it's intrusive.


Posted by Andy at December 13, 2006 12:33 PM

I was trying to think of an argument against this, but nothing cogent came to mind. I think you're just right.

Posted by dan at December 14, 2006 12:15 AM

Cogent: Appealing to the intellect or powers of reasoning; convincing.

Dan, I am cogented you made that picture. I like UW/CS very much.

Posted by (m) at December 14, 2006 1:29 AM

While I completely understand that:

If Karen O farted into a tin can telephone and someone recorded it on the other end with a home made boom box fashioned out of chicken wire- then that someone put it on the internet and other people downloaded it and then launched into a discussion of the ethics of downloading it

What I can't figure out for the life of me is why more people aren't into great bands like the Dexateens instead.

Posted by Pudd at December 14, 2006 3:31 PM

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