Iain Mew. Cis/white/hetero/male. I am from the UK. I write for The Singles Jukebox and I also did One Week One Band: Coldplay. The url comes from this song. My avatar is by werepop. See here if you want to see photos of stuff I ate.
Grooves N Jams: The Zine
We’re super excited to announce that Grooves N Jams now has a companion zine! This is a project over a year in the making, an outlet for all our longer ideas. Issue One features DV on his Universal Covers Theory with part one of an article called “Beneath the Covers” and MG on the under-underground of post-punk with “Silicon Teens Are From England (The Pulsars).” There are original illustrations by Bridget Harrington and #rare Hannah Montana stamps, plus a glittery pop cover and hand stitching. The zine is available IRL at Quimby’s in Chicago and online through Etsy. We’ll be featuring the zine here next month, just in time for you to start getting excited for Issue Two.
Five Years of the Singles Jukebox
We’re not usually big on self-aggrandisement or mythologising. More or less, we just do one thing — we rate pop songs out of ten — but we love it and we do it well. We don’t pay attention to the consensus around us; we build our own (sometimes, but we often disagree). And we’ve now been doing it for five years.
Of course the story of the Jukebox goes back further than that. We started as a pair of columns on Stylus, one for UK singles and one for US singles, which ran until the site closed in 2007. A chance meeting between two writers in a pub led to a few emails going across the globe, and all of a sudden the band was back together, just like we’d never split up. Sure, our friends at Pitchfork began to focus on individual tracks in earnest a month earlier, stealing our thunder somewhat, but we’ll always have the extra decimal place.
In the last five years, there have been nearly 3400 songs covered from over 60 countries, with about 30,000 individual paragraph-long reviews from us adding up to about 2,000,000 (two million) words. It’d take you a week solid to read the site from front to back. We don’t recommend you do that, so here are some highlights from our first five years. Feel free to share your own in the comments!
Here’s to another five just like these.
My Singles Jukebox five year celebration series came to a halt mostly as a result of moving but partly because I didn’t want to tread on this post, and it turned out to be great.
If you want to know why Final Fantasy Type-0 still isn’t available outside of Japan, it comes down to Square dragging its feet and then no longer having the team that could pick apart the code. It’s a known fact that the source code to Kingdom Hearts was lost and had to be entirely recreated for the HD remake. Want to play Panzer Dragoon Saga? Good luck; the source code was lost, the game was only published for the Sega Saturn, and you’d be lucky to find one person in a thousand who’s actually played the game. A that was met with universal acclaim and has been raved about for years after its release, I’ll note.
“The benefits to free games" (Eliot Lefebvre, 2014).
i am not, i should note, wholesale endorsing the idea of the piece - there’s a few gaps in the conceptual underpinning, here, overlooked for a bit more of a utopian slant than i care for in pieces tackling the issue of a hugely wealthy company not merely offering a game for a lower price-point that it can afford to eat a little loss on but offering it for free, something about that point nags at me even if i know beyond a doubt none of the people who worked on the game would see a pittance of cash back either way, and i think part of why is the frank admission of it, secure in knowing it won’t cost them to say so (obligate contrarianism-to-the-contrarianism, i don’t at all want to hear anyone dispute the hilarious egotism that is EA being voted worst company in the USA when bank of america still, you know, operates; there’s an order of fucking magnitude to keep in mind) - but i wanted to pull this from within it anyway, because it more than any other part of the piece deserves to scream out beyond it, to a wider application.
it’s not just music that has a discovery problem, after all.
I’ve posted about the issue of loss of easy access to gaming history before, with an additional UK-centric slant. Reading this now I can definitely see the parallels to Spotify and similar, and what happens to music outside of them, or music on them when they go.
Source: SoundCloud / FruitsClippers
My hope was that I’d never have to address the legitimacy or even the existence of “Angela Cheng.” But I got a call today from a BuzzFeed editor who led me to believe that they were moving ahead with a story about “Cheng” that included me, with or without my participation. I always refrained from…
A must read on the music industry rumor mill, from someone who has most definitely heard a lot of it. I can say from working for the man that Bill Werde is terrifying in the best sense of the word. If Angela Cheng were a real person (which I am now certain she is not), I would not want to be in her shoes.
Sidenote: here is the weak-ass BuzzFeed "story" Werde references.
Pop criticism being contaminated by stan culture, and the music press not really having any grasp of how stan culture works