Now I would be the first to admit that I am getting on a bit these days. I have a habit now of going into ‘grumpy old man’ mode, which also includes ‘reminiscing mode’.
I love the ability to use iPods and similar devices to listen to music anywhere and at any time, I am not a Luddite! But, one of my pet hates in the car (or any other time actually) is the ‘switching around’ that my kids (and all others of a similar age I assume) do between ‘tracks’ on albums! They also have a habit of ‘getting bored’ before a track finishes – and switch to the next.
I have made my thoughts known on this to them on numerous occasions and my daughter now holds back before stopping a track early (not because she agrees, but because she knows it annoys me!)
So, imagine my delight at discovering that there is a growing band of people who share my view!
Record clubs are springing up all over the country (I have not been and they are probably full of ‘scary people’ but who cares!). The rules are strict. No talking. No texting. You must listen to every song on the album – in order!
‘Classic Album Sundays’ are apparently being set up all over the UK. Groups of music fans sit in front of a vinyl turntable, with the best speakers they can afford, dim the lights and listen to a classic album all the way through. This is a strike against “‘download culture”, the sense that music has just become an endless compilation of random songs used as background noise.
This is also a topic that has been making the papers, Pink Floyd for example went to court to try to protect the integrity of albums such as Dark Side of the Moon. These artists created works that have a beginning, a middle and end, that have nuances, themes, that take you on a journey that’s as great as any novel, any opera, any drama – it is an art form.
Since the start of the MP3 era albums have become meaningless. Some songs are given away as free downloads, track listings can change with bonus tracks being added or changed. You can listen all the way through but do not feel obliged to obey the whims of a pop star.
You still cannot beat sitting in a dark room with a high-end hi-fi listening to a classic album all the way through – try it!