upgrading old MP3s
Tuesday, November 15 2011
I have a lot of hand-assembled discographies on my main computer, mostly made in the early 2000s from MP3 downloaded from Napster, Kazaa, or some sort of Gnutella file sharing client. The songs tend to vary in quality and volume, though never enough to really bother me. Recently, though, I was trying to listen to a collection of MP3s from the Air album 10,000 Hz Legend, and they all contained defects where the sound would fade out and in every couple of minutes. So I'd decided to replace the whole disorganized mess with a fresh Air discography downloaded using Bittorrent. I also replaced a few other messed-up discographies (including Pink Floyd and Stereolab, both of which Air reminds me of). The thing about information curation is that it's hard, thankless work, and somebody else has already done it better than you ever will. Save the hours of your precious life for something you can't just download.
So then I had all these Air albums; they've had a big career and made a lot of music (which, I have to confess, is somewhat lacking in some essential quality. Pathos, perhaps?). Listening to the soundtrack album The Virgin Suicides had reminded me of the existence of that movie, which I then downloaded (also using Bittorrent). Today I watched it. The Air album and the Wikipedia entry had made it seem sublime and timeless, but something about seeing it set in its actual time and place (the decidedly un-sublime 1970s of Grosse Pointe, Michigan) gave it all a sitcom quality that I found distracting. But perhaps kids today find the 1970s as ancient and intangible as the Roaring Twenties are to me.
This evening Gretchen and I watched the Will Farrell vehicle Everything Must Go about a middle manager (Farrell) who loses his job and then goes home to find his wife has changed the locks and dumped all his shit on the front lawn. From there, Farrell decides to live with his stuff in what becomes a multi-day yard sale. I'd come to the movie expecting it to be more of a comedy, but instead proved to be a deliberately-paced study of human impotency. There just wasn't quite enough there for me to love it. But somehow it really spoke to Gretchen, who gave it a Netflix rating of five stars (the most a film can get).
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