This past week I had a conversation with a friend of mine regarding "the fleshing out of the back catalog." Fleshing out the back catalog (FOTBC) is a process with which I've been obsessed recently. The Beatles, for example, never played together during my lifetime and as such I've only purchased their records within a historical context. And being an anthropologist of audiophilia, their major catalog is on my shelf, only on vinyl.
Ditto Led Zeppelin, good REM, the Smiths, Davis, Coltrane, New Order, Bob Dylan, etc. Now, I'm MOSTLY the kind of person who will insist and insist on the merits of LP over CD; but I differ in that I think albums made WITH THE IDEA OF THE CD IN MIND, should be listened to on CD. The Beatles sound like shit on CD, for the most part, but that doesn't mean I don't want to listen to them on the subway some time. Ditto the others. Most people would suggest I construct/purchase an elaborate transfering system to translate Side A of Revolver, for example, to an MP3 track. But think about it. That's like taking a digital photograph of a painting in an art museum (something I CANNOT FATHOM PEOPLE THINK IS A GOOD IDEA, AND SOMETHING I DESPERATELY NEED TO WRITE A CRAIGSLIST RANT ABOUT OR SOMETHING). Native Americans used to believe that by having one's photograph taken, their soul would be captured in the picture, stolen from their body.
I believe taking the music recording out of the vinyl and into the iMac is the same thing. I refuse to do it.
Enter BMG music club. For roughly 40 dollars in shipping and handling, including the obligatory single purchase CD (the advertised deal is 12 CDs for the price of 1), today I received a hell of a package at work, fulfilling a bit of the FOTBC mission. Today's arrivals:
- Miles Davis Bitches Brew (counts as 2 CDs)
- Miles Davis In a Silent Way
- Miles Davis Tutu
- Miles Davis Filles de Kilimanjaro
- Lou Reed Transformer
- Kronos Quartet and Clint Masell The Fountain Soundtrack
- Kronos Quartet and Philip Glass Dracula (1933 version) Soundtrack
- John Coltrane The Gentle Side of… (purely for the recording of Coltrane and Ellington doing "Sentimental Mood")
- Brian Eno Ambient One: Music for Airports (One of my Top 5 records of all time)
- Sigur Ros ( ) (my LP version is starting to wear and the CD I had got left in a Phoenix rental car)
BECAUSE I DIDN'T HAVE THE PROMO:
11. Sparklehorse Dreamt for Light Years in the Belly of the Mountain
So that's that. I was excited, and wanted to tell someone. I just quit BMG. Rock.