Wednesday, August 31. 2005
Static Multimedia posted the September 2005 edition of Recycled Goods today. This is the 23rd edition in a series that has now bagged 907 records. This was kind of a rush job after other projects chewed up most of the month, but I think I came up with a good mix of albums. Several are arguably new. Some months back I was having so much trouble getting good world music albums that I just dropped the recycled requirement. I figured that while most world records newly washed up in these parts are really old ones in their native lands, the distinction caused more confusion than it was worth. Two more records are new releases of live jazz concerts not really old enough to be classified as vault material: Sonny Rollins and David S. Ware. But starting short of material, I rather arbitrarily ruled them eligible anyway. I actually wrote them up for the Jazz Consumer Guide, but once the Voice published full reviews they deprioritized and lost out in the inevitable space squeeze. Besides, I could run them here.
We did two album covers this time. Although not identified as such, these are the Pick Hits. In that role Amadou & Mariam was the obvious choice, but I also wanted to show off the Rollins cover. Publisher had no problem with the suggestion, so this will probably be a regular feature. The mad scramble to make deadline partly contributed to the ACN, although I've done this a couple of times before, and as I notice reissues of albums worth pointing out I'll run this section. There's no reason I have to do fifty albums each time, other than that I'm trying to keep up. But it takes a lot of time, and I'm starting to worry that I don't have the time to handle this many properly.
The other frustration is getting enough of the albums that deserve to be reviewed here. This is especially a problem with world music, but the only genre I'm reasonably well supplied with is jazz. After world music, the toughest area to keep up with is recent rock, hip-hop, etc. Looking at the reissues section in Blender this month, I have 6 of 26 records reviewed, but they come from just three labels. One positive thing is the sudden uptick in country music this month, mostly thanks to Universal -- which had been largely absent from the column for the past year (excepting Verve, their jazz label). Would love to see more hip-hop and more dance music. Despite my complaints, this column can be a lot of fun to work on.
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