Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Amazon joins the DRM-free gang, and some thoughts on McCartney II

Posted By on 05.16.07 at 03:56 PM

Amazon just announced that sometime this year they'll be opening an online music store stocked with "millions of songs" from over 12,000 labels, including EMI. No word on pricing or bitrate yet, or who else they're dealing with besides EMI, but they're promising that files sold through the service won't be locked down with DRM, which is killer news. Given the amount of love consumers seem to have for Amazon in general, I could see it being one of the only real threats to the iTunes Music Store's dominance of the online music market.

I'm guessing that Amazon's deal with EMI will include Paul McCartney's solo discography, which is about to be reissued and released to online music stores. I highly recommend you take the opportunity to purchase a copy of McCartney II, which has been sort of hard to find on CD, probably because it's supposed to be his least favorite work. Which I can sort of understand. Most of his solo material can be divided into sappy sentimental ballads ("Feelings" Paul) and elaborately structured pop ("Important" Paul), but II is a lunatic sugar-rush of home-recorded synth-pop full of bizarre ideas and nonsense lyrics ("Stoner with a 4-track" Paul). Recently the Devo-ish track "Temporary Secretary" has been revived, bizarrely enough, by some European hipster DJs who figured out that it can totally hang with Daft Punk and trashy electro hip-hop remixes in terms of providing goofy, hyperactive good times.

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