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The Labor Beat: Music scenes were once DIY or “indie” until those were co-opted. Will the emerging idea of artistic “interdependence” fare any better? "Neoliberalization, however, has since shifted the stakes of DIY: It demands that everyone “do it themselves” as independent entrepreneurs, such as gig economy contract workers. By 2013, it was clear that DIY had been fully co-opted not just by the culture industry (e.g., in what the brand consultancy K-Hole dubbed ...Read More
"This essay was originally commissioned by online electronic music magazine and community platform Resident Advisor for its 2010–2019 End of the Decade run of features. Upon reading the essay, Resident Advisor chose to cancel the project citing issues with the essay’s position and focus on major shifts in the standards ...Read More
“Here’s why the colonization & centralization of the internet are so important: by mediating our online activity, corporations restrict our ability to actively recreate ourselves at the speed of data. Nonetheless, the internet’s emancipatory potential remains there. Though subjected to the tyranny of the algorithm, the internet search remains a ...Read More
It makes perfect sense to me that young well-off people would seek out a platform like this. They want the alt DIY venue but they don't know where to find it or they are scared of being rejected. Paying to feel like you're part of something is so much easier. "At a recent Sofar Sounds show, I looked around and wondered if this is really what people want now: seamless, curated social experience. To see shows in coworking spaces and Ray-Ban stores and white-walled coffee shops. If this is truly where mainstream culture is headed, there’s comfort in how universally ...Read More
"The group Roomful of Teeth came under fire recently from Inuit singer Tanya Tagaq about their use of throat singing, or katajjaq, which comes from a long oral tradition among Inuit women, and can be heard in the composition Partita for Eight Voices. The piece has won two noteworthy awards: This story shows how traditional practices, such as Inuit throat singing, which has cultural protection status in Canada, contrast with Western ideas of the "public domain" - saying that pre-copyright creations are common property. Post-colonialist thought problematizes cultural appropriation, where the dominant culture reaches into (its) former colonies to, ...Read More
"When you buy an album, some of that money goes directly to the artist. But with streaming, the royalty breakdown works very differently: Subscription dollars go into one big pool and are doled out to artists based on how many times their songs are streamed across a given service. So ...Read More
“A quest for another sort of authenticity—the paid-for privilege of being present at an Event—fuels what Amnesia Scanner call “the experience economy” of today’s festivals. Just as much as bottle-service raves on cruise ships or EDM gatherings like Electric Daisy Carnival, experimental music festivals are selling exclusivity and a sense ...Read More
AI technology strives to be both perfect and human, but being human means being imperfect. Beauty and creativity often comes from flaws and mistakes, often leading us in new and unexpected directions. Will a more realistic form of AI mimic our forgetfulness, errors, and imperfections? “In a few years when the systems are way more sophisticated, we’re going to miss the little failures, the places where the system has misunderstood us in ways that helped us revaluate things like beauty and meaning,”
“There are many musicians who are thriving where I would argue that the music itself is a secondary consideration, and perhaps the image is primary,” Dryhurst says. “This is nothing new. However, the supremacy of image over sound in music is more severe than it has ever been.”
"In Spotify’s world, listening data has become the oil that fuels a monetizable metrics machine, pumping the numbers that lure advertisers to the platform. In a data-driven listening environment, the commodity is no longer music. The commodity is listening. The commodity is users and their moods. The commodity is listening ...Read More