PopMatters is moving to WordPress. We will publish a few essays daily while we develop the new site. We hope the beta will be up sometime late next week.
Reviews

The Music Internet Untangled: Using Online Services to Expand Your Musical Horizons by Andy Breeding

Nicholas Taylor

No longer do you have to hang out at the local record store to hear new music, nor do you have to pour over countless magazines and spend lots of money on bands you've never heard before.


The Music Internet Untangled

Publisher: Giant Path Publishing
Length: 212
Subtitle: Using Online Services to Expand Your Musical Horizons
Price: $19.95
Author: Andy Breeding
US publication date: 2004-10
Amazon affiliate
Amazon

With the demise of Napster, many feared that the use of the Internet as a tool for music exploration and discovery was finished. How could record companies convince consumers to pay for something that they had gotten used to getting for free? The last few years have seen the rise of such services as iTunes, Rhapsody, LAUNCHcast, eMusic, the "new" Napster, and countless others. The diversity and variety of these various services reflects just how unsettled and volatile this nascent market is. Providers are scrambling for a distribution service that seems both fair and profitable, while consumers are searching for products that are affordable and convenient. The dizzying array how companies and services, however, can leave the uninformed consumer confused and intimidated. That's exactly where Andy Breeding's excellent guidebook comes in.

The Music Internet Untangled is not a work of theory, nor is it a primer on copyright laws and controversies. Rather, it is an informative, step-by-step guide to discovering what each major online music service has to offer. Specifically, Breeding explores how people can use the Internet as a vehicle for discovering new music. In his preface, he describes how as a teenager, he was a High Fidelity-type music snob. As he got older, however, he lost touch with the current music scene, until it got to the point that his only contact with popular music was listening to classic-rock radio in the car on the way home from work. Upon discovering the online radio station LAUNCHcast, however, his eyes were opened to the vast possibilities of the Internet in terms of discovering and appreciating upcoming artists and trends. No longer do you have to hang out at the local record store to hear new music, nor do you have to pour over countless magazines and spend lots of money on bands you've never heard before. In Breeding's experience, the Internet has empowered the consumer to make much better use of his or her music-buying dollar.

In that spirit, half of the book is devoted to seven-day music discovery plans for each major music service. He provides step-by-step instructions on how to get the most out of these services, while spending no more than thirty minutes a day on the endeavor. His recommendations of various services are informed by how easy they allow users to discover new music at an affordable price. Breeding expertly guides readers through Internet radio providers (LAUNCHcast, Live365, MSN Radio), online jukeboxes (Rhapsody), download services (iTunes, eMusic), as well as services that encompass all three (Musicmatch, Napster). In addition, he provides the reader with a treasure trove of resources for finding music information on the Internet. He devotes entire chapters to how to find album reviews, best-of lists, lyrics, information about musical genres, music charts, and other people that share your particular taste, among other things. Even though I am a music critic for an online magazine, I learned something new and informative on every page.

Breeding has a passion for music, and a genuine desire to help others use the Internet to foster their own musical passions. After reading this book, the reader does not feel like the Internet is an imposing, confusing cacophony of competing services and providers; rather, the reader views the internet as an invaluable tool that gives the informed consumer more choice than ever before. Whether you're a casual fan or an aficionado, whether you connect to the Internet via DSL or dial-up, whether you own a portable MP3 player or not, you will undoubtedly find information of value in this excellent guidebook.

Please Donate to Help Save PopMatters

PopMatters have been informed by our current technology and hosting provider that we have less than a month, until November 6, to move PopMatters off their service or we will be shut down. We are moving to WordPress and a new host, but we really need your help to save the site.


Music

Books

Film

Recent
Television

How 'Watchmen' and 'The Boys' Deconstruct American Fascism

Superhero media has a history of critiquing the dark side of power, hero worship, and vigilantism, but none have done so as radically as Watchmen and The Boys.

Music

Floodlights' 'From a View' Is Classicist Antipodal Indie Guitar Pop

Aussie indie rockers, Floodlights' debut From a View is a very cleanly, crisply-produced and mixed collection of shambolic, do-it-yourself indie guitar music.

Music

CF Watkins Embraces a Cool, Sophisticated Twang on 'Babygirl'

CF Watkins has pulled off the unique trick of creating an album that is imbued with the warmth of the American South as well as the urban sophistication of New York.

Music

Helena Deland Suggests Imagination Is More Rewarding Than Reality on 'Something New'

Canadian singer-songwriter Helena Deland's first full-length release Someone New reveals her considerable creative talents.

Music

While the Sun Shines: An Interview with Composer Joe Wong

Joe Wong, the composer behind Netflix's Russian Doll and Master of None, articulates personal grief and grappling with artistic fulfillment into a sweeping debut album.

Music

Peter Frampton Asks "Do You Feel Like I Do?" in Rock-Solid Book on Storied Career

British rocker Peter Frampton grew up fast before reaching meteoric heights with Frampton Comes Alive! Now the 70-year-old Grammy-winning artist facing a degenerative muscle condition looks back on his life in his new memoir and this revealing interview.

Books

Bishakh Som's 'Spellbound' Is an Innovative Take on the Graphic Memoir

Bishakh's Som's graphic memoir, Spellbound, serves as a reminder that trans memoirs need not hinge on transition narratives, or at least not on the ones we are used to seeing.

Music

Gamblers' Michael McManus Discusses Religion, Addiction, and the Importance of Writing Open-Ended Songs

Seductively approachable, Gamblers' sunny sound masks the tragedy and despair that populate the band's debut album.

Books

Peter Guralnick's 'Looking to Get Lost' Is an Ode to the Pleasures of Writing About Music

Peter Guralnick's homage to writing about music, 'Looking to Get Lost', shows how good music writing gets the music into the readers' head.

Film

In Praise of the Artifice in George Cukor's 'Sylvia Scarlett'

George Cukor's gender-bending Sylvia Scarlett proposes a heroine who learns nothing from her cross-gendered ordeal.

Music

The Cure: Ranking the Albums From 13 to 1

Just about every Cure album is worth picking up, and even those ranked lowest boast worthwhile moments. Here are their albums, spanning 29 years, presented from worst to best.

Television

The 20 Best Episodes of 'Star Trek: The Original Series'

This is a timeless list of 20 thrilling Star Trek episodes that delight, excite, and entertain, all the while exploring the deepest aspects of the human condition and questioning our place in the universe.

Music

The 20 Best Tom Petty Songs

With today's release of Tom Petty's Wildflowers & All the Rest (Deluxe Edition), we're revisiting Petty's 20 best songs.

Joshua M. Miller
Music

The 11 Greatest Hits From "Greatest Hits" Compilations

It's one of the strangest pop microcosms in history: singles released exclusively from Greatest Hits compilations. We rounded 'em up and ranked 'em to find out what is truly the greatest Greatest Hit of all.

Music

When Punk Got the Funk

As punks were looking for some potential pathways out of the cul-de-sacs of their limited soundscapes, they saw in funk a way to expand the punk palette without sacrificing either their ethos or idea(l)s.

Music

20 Hits of the '80s You Might Not Have Known Are Covers

There were many hit cover versions in the '80s, some of well-known originals, and some that fans may be surprised are covers.

Music

The Reign of Kindo Discuss Why We're Truly "Better Off Together"

The Reign of Kindo's Joseph Secchiaroli delves deep into their latest single and future plans, as well as how COVID-19 has affected not only the band but America as a whole.

Books

Tommy Siegel's Comic 'I Hope This Helps' Pokes at Social Media Addiction

Jukebox the Ghost's Tommy Siegel discusses his "500 Comics in 500 Days" project, which is now a new book, I Hope This Helps.


Reviews
Collapse Expand Reviews



Features
Collapse Expand Features

PM Picks
Collapse Expand Pm Picks

© 1999-2020 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters is wholly independent, women-owned and operated.