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Benprogfuse
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#1
21st January 2013
Old 21st January 2013
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Most people do not listen to entire albums

and when I say entire albums I am pretty much referring to the non radio singles.

This has been really bothering me.

For example, I will have somebody riding in my car with me going through my iPod and after noticing a band, they will tell me all about how they were really into that particular band and used to listen to them all of them time, etc.. Then proceed to select one of their hit singles from the album. When the song is finished, they will proceed to skip over all of the songs until they get to the next radio single and listen to that.

I will then grab my iPod from them and play a different song from the same album that I think is better and every time they will be like "What is that? I have never heard this song before. It is really good"...

I just do not understand it. I am the exact opposite. When I purchase an album, I will naturally skip over the radio songs and listen to every other song on the album. I will then develop my own opinion of which tracks are my favorite.

I would say about 80% of the time I will consider the radio songs to be the worst songs on an album. Of coarse most of the bands that I listen to don't end up on the radio anyway...
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#2
21st January 2013
Old 21st January 2013
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Sadly (and this is just one opinion so take it for what it's worth) I think that the days of the album are coming to an end. The writing has been on the wall for quite some time now. The general public no longer wants or cares about albums and in most cases does not even possess the attention span to ever get through an entire album even if they wanted to hear it. As the demand for albums continues to decrees, there will come a point that musicians will be forced to abandon the format so that they can make a living. Selling a few singles is much more financially viable in today's market than trying to get people to buy and entire album. It's also a lot less work. I would love to be proven wrong about this.
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21st January 2013
Old 21st January 2013
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Another album fan here. I love concept albums too. Unless the music is horrible I'll have no problem listening all the way through. Sucks that we're the minority but most people only want to hear "the hits".
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21st January 2013
Old 21st January 2013
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I think the day of the album choked its final breath sometime in the early/mid 90's as far as the general listening public is concerned.
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21st January 2013
Old 21st January 2013
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The album is alive and well. If your into metal/ hard rock the album is king. Vinyl and CD formats.
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21st January 2013
Old 21st January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Empire Prod View Post
Sadly (and this is just one opinion so take it for what it's worth) I think that the days of the album are coming to an end. The writing has been on the wall for quite some time now. The general public no longer wants or cares about albums and in most cases does not even possess the attention span to ever get through an entire album even if they wanted to hear it. As the demand for albums continues to decrees, there will come a point that musicians will be forced to abandon the format so that they can make a living. Selling a few singles is much more financially viable in today's market than trying to get people to buy and entire album. It's also a lot less work. I would love to be proven wrong about this.
I absolutely agree. I had a few other points, but didn't want to make my initial post too long. I think that the tendency for the general public to do this increased with the advent of CDs, then the ability to purchase individual songs on iTunes, etc..

It is also a generational thing because of this. I was born in 1981, so I began listening to music via cassette tapes, then I got my first CD player when I was about 12 and remember being amazed that I had the ability to switch a song at the press of a button.

I had a 21 year old girl who used to sit next to me at work. I noticed that her iPod only had a couple of songs per each band/artist. I got into a discussion with her and I mentioned that when I purchase an album by a particular band I like, I listen to the entire thing from start to finish. She gave me an astonishing look and literally told me that the thought of listening to an entire album had never crossed her mind.

The thing that bothers me the most like I mentioned earlier is that I usually think that the radio singles are the worst songs on an album.

I've read too many stories about bands/artists recording entire albums, then the label telling them to make up and record 1 or 2 additional songs that are more radio friendly to be released as singles to advertise that particular album. to me they are like commercials. Usually shorter and less risky.

The idea of purchasing an album and only listening to the radio songs is like renting a DVD of a movie that you really want to see, then skipping to the chapters where all of the talked about scenes are then returning the DVD without watching the entire movie.
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#7
22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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I don't think it's so much of a "people don't listen to albums anymore" thing, it's just that some people like singles, some like album tracks and some like album tracks + b-sides. I fall into the latter category. I can easily accept someone not knowing some obscure track by a successful band . . . it's when they say they're a "massive fan" and they don't know an album track (which is regularly played live by the band) that I don't get it!
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22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Benprogfuse View Post
The idea of purchasing an album and only listening to the radio songs is like renting a DVD of a movie that you really want to see, then skipping to the chapters where all of the talked about scenes are then returning the DVD without watching the entire movie.
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22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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I think part of the problem is the decline if albums that are consistently good throughout their entirety.

Don't get me wrong - the majority of albums I buy are great throughout, and I am still a massive fan of the full album format. Great bands are still putting out great full length albums, and I don't think that will ever completely die (thankfully).

I just tend to think that from maybe the mid-90's onwards, the emphasis on the single over the album has increased, and this has allowed (mainly pop) artists to slack off for the rest of an album.

I guess it's a bit of a chicken or the egg syndrome - but it's definitely not something that has just happened.

I think the one positive that can come from this is the bringing back of the EP. I wouldn't mind some of my favorite bands putting out a 5-6 song EP every 6-12 months or whatever, as you're getting a continual flow of new music.
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22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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I think the entire recording industry is its self on the cliff.
Im not even sure why they sell CD players, I cant figure where to buy CDS unless its a thrift store.

I watch Saturday night live and I always go "HUH, Who is this or that act"
I just have no idea,

Where do CDS come from?

Why cant they be $9 like they PROMISED US back in 1990's

Last CD I paid for was 10 years ago, Bob Dylan.

Disposable society
Disposable humans,
Disposable consumer goods,

Perhaps they should try to auto tune this??
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22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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I admit it, I hardly ever listen to whole albums. I'm simply so picky that I almost never come across an album that actually have ten or so really good songs. Why should I listen music that I don't like? Just because it's the artist's vision?
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22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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In regards to the comment about the movie, I think an album is more like a TV show. You might buy the whole season box set because you love everything on it and want all the extra, commentaries etc, (in the CD world, the B-Sides). Others will just buy the "Best-Of" Compilation DVD because they only like the 5 most talked about episodes and they're a casual watcher (see: Every "Now!" CD and Greatest Hits collection), others will buy one or two episodes online (see: singles) and most.. well, most will only pay attention to it if they're skimming past and it pops on TV... for free (see: radio).

Now, there's nothing WRONG with this, you've just gotta adapt.
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#14
22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Empire Prod View Post
Sadly (and this is just one opinion so take it for what it's worth) I think that the days of the album are coming to an end. The writing has been on the wall for quite some time now. The general public no longer wants or cares about albums and in most cases does not even possess the attention span to ever get through an entire album even if they wanted to hear it. As the demand for albums continues to decrees, there will come a point that musicians will be forced to abandon the format so that they can make a living. Selling a few singles is much more financially viable in today's market than trying to get people to buy and entire album. It's also a lot less work. I would love to be proven wrong about this.
That's not a myth. Those ancient bands that could create albums, Album Bands, still sell, eg.,
Yes, Zappa, Deep Purple, Steeley Dan, Jethro Tull, Led Zep, Rickie Lee Jones, The Beatles, Stevie Wonder, George Duke. etc etc
Latter day eg.,
Lewis Taylor, Bill Laswell, Mono (UK), Infected Mushroom, Janelle Monae, Michael Jackson.

Most of the extremely talented musician/writers out there, let's pick one, say, Flying Lotus, can create amazing albums of tracks but sitting through an album is just bloody hard work.

For all the training and discipline of the new musicians out there, even the best can't sustain interest on a 40 minute musical trip from A to B.
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22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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That is because these days bands & "artists" tend to seek out several producers for a project and have no direction. So the album ends up sounding less cohesive because musically it is all over the place without any concept. They are more concerned with making album or compilations than something that is actually stimulating. Just my two cents.

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22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barfunkel View Post
I admit it, I hardly ever listen to whole albums. I'm simply so picky that I almost never come across an album that actually have ten or so really good songs. Why should I listen music that I don't like? Just because it's the artist's vision?
Do you listen to each song on the album at least once before you determine that you do not like them?
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22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeTSH View Post
In regards to the comment about the movie, I think an album is more like a TV show. You might buy the whole season box set because you love everything on it and want all the extra, commentaries etc, (in the CD world, the B-Sides). Others will just buy the "Best-Of" Compilation DVD because they only like the 5 most talked about episodes and they're a casual watcher (see: Every "Now!" CD and Greatest Hits collection), others will buy one or two episodes online (see: singles) and most.. well, most will only pay attention to it if they're skimming past and it pops on TV... for free (see: radio).

Now, there's nothing WRONG with this, you've just gotta adapt.
I'm not just talking about putting an album on and listening to the entire thing in one sitting. I'm referring more to listening to all of it's contents at least once or twice and not just skipping to the radio singles.
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22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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The Walkman was changing the way my friends consumed music as early as 1980. Previous to that, we would make cassette tapes of our favorite albums and listen to the entire casette on our home systems. Suddenly, you had high quality music-to-go, and a personalized mix became the background track for daily activities on the go.

I recall that album listening was still strong through the 80's, but not much from about 1990 on, when programmable car and carry CD players appeared. The personal music mix was the key listening concept from then on with the mass market.

MP3 players nailed the "albums for mass market" coffin shut by early 2000's. Album listening is still here, but it's a nitche for serious music fans. Also still very strong in the classical and jazz markets.

Of course, many people on this board still listen to albums. GS people are serious popular music fans, with not only an appreciation of the album, but financial and business interests in sustaining the album. In the 70's, nearly every band came into the studio with a plan to record an album of 10 or 12 songs. That's been on the wane since the 80's, and since 2000, most bands come in to lay down one or two that they'll "release" online. I've had ONE client who consistently has recorded full albums of material, and he stopped doing that about 3 years ago. I don't do country. Maybe that's different.

That's been my experience and hindsight vision anyway.
#19
22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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Funny, I remember how "personal music mixes" (aka private compilations ?) I got my hands on (cassette tapes) would get me into full albums ... then onto discographies ...

Cheers.

Last edited by coffeecup77; 22nd January 2013 at 07:28 PM.. Reason: typo
#20
22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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A couple of thoughts to share...

Back when my love affair with music started (early 70s), I would listen to the whole LP. At the very least I would get thru the first half of each side and in most cases I found some gems that I loved even more than the "hit" that attracted me to the record in the first place.

As I got to the late 80s/early 90s I noticed how so many of my favorite acts started getting lazy. Too much filler. We all know this happened and I think this helped to steer listeners away from giving the lesser known songs a fair chance.

Fast forward to today.

Sadly, subsequent generations are programmed to interact with music based on the culture they are raised in. There is practically nothing redeeming about the current culture here in the US.

I think there are masses of people now who don't even know how to listen to music properly. It's background noise to them.

Now that anyone with a decent computer, software, a quality mic/pre can create finished sounding work (assuming the talent is there) we may yet return to a version of what we once had. But in a different way....

It will require a rebuilding of trust where listeners know a particular artist consistently puts 100% into every work they put out. The work is offered in a high res format and the fan is willing to pay for that.

And of course filters. Someone has to figure out how to create the trusted filters that connect us with the sounds that touch us.

We're not there yet.
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22nd January 2013
Old 22nd January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coffeecup77 View Post
Funny, I remember how "personal music mixes" (aka private compilations ?) I got my hands on (cassette tapes) would get me into full albums ... then onto dicographies ...

Cheers.
I recall the same thing. I'd get hold of a stray comp cassette and fall in love with one of the cuts that was completely unrecognizable to me. And it wasn't like you could google a few of the lyrics and get the entire bio & discography of the band. You had to take it to the record store, play it for the owner and hope he knew what it was.

A few I first heard on cassette comps... INXS, Steve Forman, Steel Pulse, Pere Ubu, The Nails, Television, Squeeze, Taj Mahal, etc...

Comps have their upside if the listener's attitude and enthusiasm is there.
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#22
23rd January 2013
Old 23rd January 2013
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Most of the albums I have don't even have radio singles.

I always listen to the entire album if it really interests me. Though, there are a few albums that have songs that I have skipped, usually because I'm not feeling the particular track, but may end up listening to it again later and liking it.
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#23
23rd January 2013
Old 23rd January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Benprogfuse View Post
Do you listen to each song on the album at least once before you determine that you do not like them?
Yes I do, though since I buy lots of records sometimes an album can sit years in my shelves almost untouched, but eventually I do give each song a chance. I actually just went through my entire soul and funk album collection a few days ago, trying to find hidden gems that I had never given a real chance. Now let me tell, as much as I love soul and funk, those albums sure had lots of filler...

Like I said, I'm really picky about my music. Just ok won't cut it.
#24
23rd January 2013
Old 23rd January 2013
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To be fair, there have been many albums released where the label contract forced the band to release an album a year and the band/artist had to use filler material to fulfill the contract.
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23rd January 2013
Old 23rd January 2013
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Most people today would be hospitalized if they had to actually be still and concentrate for that long.
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#26
23rd January 2013
Old 23rd January 2013
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Albums that I must listen to the entire thing:

Kraftwerks's Autobahn, The Man Machine

Isao Tomita "Holst's The Planets"

These are some of the few albums that I won't listen to unless I have time for the whole thing.
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23rd January 2013
Old 23rd January 2013
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Full album listens are pretty common among hip hop heads. Well the ones I talk to about music with anyways. The other night we hit up zia records. Friend got some De La Soul CDs and I got one shipped from Vegas (one of the last copies of Stakes is High, come on).
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23rd January 2013
Old 23rd January 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Benprogfuse View Post

The idea of purchasing an album and only listening to the radio songs is like renting a DVD of a movie that you really want to see, then skipping to the chapters where all of the talked about scenes are then returning the DVD without watching the entire movie.
I can not agree with this. It's WAY over the top.

I can count on the fingers of one hand the amount of musical albums that are an Integrated Whole with a beginning middle and end and each section actually connected to the next, like a movie is. Almost all albums are just collections of songs, even most 'concept' albums have a large chunk of stuff that was written merely to fill in the gaps.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeTSH View Post
In regards to the comment about the movie, I think an album is more like a TV show.
Yeah, it's on, and when it gets slow, you flip to something else!
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Now, there's nothing WRONG with this, you've just gotta adapt.
Yes, adapt. The world has changed. IMO the CD killed the album as a listen-to-the-whole-thing deal, because there no longer was an "album side" that provided a way for an easily digestible 25-30 minutes chunk of music. Suddenly we have to consume the entire album in one gulp. How many albums can stand that scrutiny?

Oh and the CD also gave the SKIP! A human eye and hand were needed to skip on an LP. We listened to the whole LP, because otherwise we would have to get off our larded asses! Long before iPods came along, I wanted some kind of magnetic strip or bar code for CDs where you could program in your skips so that when you inserted your CD, you didn't even need the remote.

The order of an album side was very often self-evident and made some sense. Often it followed classical music forms like the Sonata. The programming of a CD is never self-evident because by the time you get to the 9th or 10th song you have forgotten the order of the first 5.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Benprogfuse View Post
Do you listen to each song on the album at least once before you determine that you do not like them?
I do. IF I buy the whole album. Since I buy a lot of stuff on line these days, I make that determination from the preview. I will give a song 30 seconds. Sure.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean Roddey
Most people today would be hospitalized if they had to actually be still and concentrate for that long.
Although I am Old, I have evolved along with the times, so that I no longer have the patience to sit through things that require me to "sit through" them!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Benprogfuse View Post
I'm not just talking about putting an album on and listening to the entire thing in one sitting. I'm referring more to listening to all of it's contents at least once or twice and not just skipping to the radio singles.
Personally I don't listen to the radio either, so I don't even know if the ones I am skipping to are the "radio" singles. Even the concept is losing its meaning. My radio in my car is locked to whoever has the Traffic on the Eights. No music. My radio at home is never turned on.

What is a "hit" single in an age when most young people are downloading from file sharing sites? The "most downloaded" song?
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#29
23rd January 2013
Old 23rd January 2013
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coincidentally just came across this:
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#30
23rd January 2013
Old 23rd January 2013
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The graph is funny.. I think the "Songs even the artist knows are bad and were only recorded to take up space to make it look legit" is just a crude assumption.
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