caprices: (Default)
The melody starts...and it is mesmerizing. The vocals join in, and I am transported by the beauty of the music. The bridge is hauntingly evocative, and I am left speechless by the ending. The song will stay in my memory forever, and I know right off that I like it.

Yeah, no. This has happened with ONE song that I can think of, which has remained obstinately impossible to track down except for the once every ten years that I accidentally tune into the radio right when they play it.*

However, I think I have hit on the proper way to determine if I actually like a song. It requires multiple repetitions, since I tend to get distracted and miss large swathes of the lyrics, when I don't just misinterpret them. Consider it a 3-step process.

1. Listen brief soundbites, to determine if I'm interested. If at least a few songs on the album have potential to intrigue me, I will sit through mediocre music for their benefit, but if I downright dislike it, I am not going to force it.

2. Listen to the album while cleaning, working, or blogging. Given the blanking-out-on-that-part-right-after-words-started, this is a good technique. I have some idea of what songs I enjoyed, and can consider going back to find out what they were singing about.

3. The litmus test: Listen to the album while baking. Since I can dance when I'm baking and less prone to losing large swatches of time, this gives me a much better idea of what the songs are, plus I've heard them once and can decide if they stand up to repeated listening.

4. Repeat as necessary.

It usually takes me the fourth or fifth rendition to start recognizing the separate songs on an album, much less pick out a favorite. I am occasionally astonished at how this develops. The song I could vaguely recognize after step 3 can become "I can listen to this five times in a row in utter stillness" category once I've listened to it while baking, especially if I listen to the whole album twice. This happened with "Almost" by Sarah Harmer, which has a rhythmic, sweeping refrain and nice lyrics, and "Miniature Disasters" by KT Tunstall, which has started edging up into comfort-song territory.



*"Orion, Mighty Hunter" is at least nominally seasonal and can be expected in the autumnal line-up on Simply Folk. It is also obscure as all get out.



caprices: (Default)
Darn it, iTunes, I really didn't need a screensaver that is strangely addictive when it responds to the music I'm listening, particularly when that music is from Tron...

The universal melody shows up in certain places--Pachelbel's canon, Jupiter from the Planets, and bits of Swan Lake, and increasing amounts of movie music. Daft Punk has managed to capture an even bigger chunk in their soundtrack for Tron. At times it resembles the classical, baroque, all the previous eras of orchestral music, but recast with electronic sounds that hit a level of pure pitch that few orchestras ever capture, with enough live string and brass to ground that noiseless sound. Perhaps it was the glowiness of the movie, but the music never actually takes second fiddle to the occasionally incoherent doings on screen.

Except possibly the part in the night club. Um.

June 2014

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