When I first got into the blogging scene, there was a genuine sense of community. The write ups and the comments were well thought out and showed that the people posting and downloading the album actually cared. No it's 90% spam. I post something I know will get a lot of downloads and what happens? It gets the downloads, but no one other than a bot has something to say about it. This is not a criticism so much of the blogger themselves. Most of the blogs that stated 5 years or so ago that are still around do actually care. It's the crop of "Wal-Mart" blogs that popped up in their wake. No write up, sometimes no tracklist, no reason to download other than the artwork looks cool. I'll be honest, there was a few stages here at this blog where I was too lazy and apathetic to post any kind of write-up. But a lot of times I did. I'll admit I'm no Mark Prindle when it comes to my reviews, but I at least tried to give something to the reader on occasion. It's these blogs that have consistently done that from day one that I have a problem with. Does the reader download it because it's labeled as "Crust" or because it's the only record by such and such band they don't have yet? What's the motivation here? The blogger's job was to give us a reason to download it. Whatever they could. And it was appreciated.
The blogging community, or should I say, the "Music blogging community" has become something that will likely die out soon. What was a tool for people to share music and experiences from said music has become too convenient for people to snatch and grab some free music. These blogs are not even what they were because the reader has discovered they can just use Google to get everything. The CD killed the tape. Mp3 killed the CD. Mp3 blogs made Itunes functionally useless. Google killed the Mp3 blog. Google wins. Convenience always seems to prevail. It's funny how that works.
The only way to save the Mp3 blog is too maybe reserve them for posting only out of print or hard to find records. Maybe demos from your crappy grindcore band, or demos from your cousin's power metal band. We need to stop posting what can be bought relatively easily. We need to reserve this space for obscurity. We need to reserve this place for unsigned band promotion. The blogger's themselves seem to care more about site traffic and blog promotion than for the unsigned band that asks them for a review and to have their demo posted. When posted, they seem to easily get lost in the sea of big names on the blogsite. I know people care more about Guttermouth than Spitting On Cops, but come on? Why don't we leave this space to help out the little guy? I'm guilty of it myself. I've posted way too many bigger names than obscure bands and it sucks. Even if we post a bigger band, we should at least have the decency to give the record a proper write up. I'll no longer post something without saying something about it. Never again. We need to bring the joy of discovering new old music back to the music blog.
If you can buy it relatively easy, then buy it. We do hurt some smaller bands who have a proper release out by posting every song on the album in it's entirety. Say they pressed 500 of them and can't move them, except at shows...The band got fucked in the ass there. Unless they are completely anti-capitalism/anti-consumerism/anti-ism and have explicatively stated they want their record posted everywhere for free, we shouldn't fuck with their need to make their money back on it. Unless it's Metallica. Then by all means post the living shit out of it. I heard Lars Ulrich eats babies. What a sick fuck.
I happen to see almost no issues with posting a RIAA band or other bigger names. I just say "do it at your own risk". For all too many reasons. There's the obvious "DMCA" notices and possible shutdown of your blog, but there's also the fact your blog will likely be overlooked because you posted something easy to find elsewhere. Your other posts will likely not be read and that obscure Japanese HC band you had to share with the world will not get it's fair due because the mindset of the downloader tends to lean on the snatch and grab aspect of it. I hate the music industry as much as anyone, and while we're not giving them anything, in fact taking, we're hindering the smaller bands and labels by including them in a sea of bigger names. Again, we should stick to unsigned bands, out of print, or hard to find stuff. Once the Mp3 blog caught on, everyone started their own punk or metal blog. And 90% of them have the same or eerily similar content. You can go here and you can go here, but you'll go there because they use Mediafire and the other uses Rapidshare. We need to bring the diversity back. When I found blogs like 7inchpunk back in the day, you realistically couldn't get any of it unless you had an Ebay account and something called a "disposable income". They had the hard to find stuff and at the time, no one had it. Then it caught on and it was reposted over and over and over again on many different blogs. Now you could find The Fuck-Ups "FU82" on at least 10 different blogs, including this one. Maybe everything that needed to be posted has been posted already. But when it's reposted without an opinion from the poster, it's just another link. Another sign of the Mp3 blog's impending doom.
The Mp3 blog will not in itself die. People always find a way to share their music. I remember using Soulseek. The chat in the Punk/Hardcore room used to be insightful discussion about punk and hardcore. Now it's basically "n-word this, n-word that". It's pretty racist up in there. Soulseek seemed to die out somewhat. At it's pique, there were a few hundred in the room, now maybe 100-150 depending on the day...They're all still stingy assholes and you have to be on their user list and part of their secret club to download from them and everyone seems to log off when you're getting what you looked so hard for. And they don't ever seem to log back in. That's what originally made me turn to blogs in the first place. No judgmental pricks with download limits and a que so long your download doesn't take a week to start. The blogging world has it's share of judgmental pricks, but not as many. One thing it lacks is the rules...Unless the uploader used Rapidshare or a similar hosting site. What will die with the Mp3 blog is the spirit. It has become a ghost town. I used to like reading what the poster had to say, but even for myself, it has gotten to the point where it's hard to care when there's free music at your fingertips, one-click away. We love our instant gratification.
The music blog has come under fire by many for it's non-monetary nature and for taking the thrill out of finding music. I'll be honest, it has. Most of these critiques come from middle aged holdover's from the original HC scene who had to wait month's for that blank cassette tape to come back filled with music. That must have sucked...Waiting a few months to find out if the band you so desperately wanted to hear was any good. I'm betting these guys got coal in their stockings a few times. What the blog did was take out the middle man. In the beginning anyways, it was a form of electronic tape trading. You had someone there hyping what they posted. It might have not been any good, or might not have been your style, but still, the blogger had to essentially "sell" you on it with their review, the provided band history and whatever reasons they might have for a recommendation. Most blogs now are photo, tracklist, and link. Nothing else. It just sucks now.
I have over 40,000 songs indexed meticulously on my Itunes, backed up on 2 hard drives...Why? No idea. I've been hoarding music for a while. The problem being, I've listened to maybe half of it...And that's a very liberal estimation. I keep the music I don't like. Maybe to give it another chance one day, maybe for boasting purposes, I don't know. I estimate that I have paid for a total of 1,000 of these songs...They were my CD back-ups, and now I don't even have the original CDs. I have my vinyl collection, but it still pales in comparison to my army of Mp3s. I downloaded these is my incessant urge to find new music. Most of these were picked off of blogs. I stopped caring 20,000 songs ago, replacing "blogspot" in my search with "Mediafire". The joy in the hunt was lost for me. I used to search for one thing and then read the rest of the blogger's site if it was in English. Then I stopped giving a fuck about one asshole's opinion. I wanted music and I wanted it now. If I ever was subject to a search and seizure by the RIAA, I'd be millions in debt. And I'd laugh all the way to the courtroom. Fuck them. Back to my point if I still had one...I stopped caring about discovering music. I just wanted it and now it's old. I think the blog is dead because it has made finding specific music too easy. We are no longer discovering, we want what we know and don't yet have.
So fuck it all. I'm gonna go masturbate. This aimless rant made me horny.