Friday, 14 September 2012

Wire Daisies

As Norman Stanley Fletcher once claimed, it is the small victories in life that stop you going insane.  Like when you get one over on iTunes.  There I was, putting a few playlists together in iTunes ready to synch them up to my iPod when that damned automated Genius thingy pushes an album cover in my face saying, ‘You’ll like this…’

Don’t you just hate it when companies use mindless technology to burrow deep inside your brain and then purport to tell you what you will or will not like?  The cheek!  And all so that they can shift a few more ‘units’.  The problem was that having played a few extracts, it did sound quite attractive and all for £6.99.

So I did what I always do – nip over to YouTube and see if there’s any live footage to check out.  There was and I was weakening so I checked Amazon and there it was available to download for circa £5, so I downloaded it and saved myself a couple of quid. Hahahahahahahaha!  Oh dear, I must get out more.

So I am now the proud owner of Wire Daisies’ second eponymous album, a band that up until iTunes intervened, I’d not heard of, and rather splendid it is too.  Of course, the Genius tool need not be that bright – all it needs to do in my case is present a list of female fronted rock bands and I’d be bound to find at least one to my taste and in this instance Wire Daisies fits the bill.  Fronted by singer, Treana Morris, they comprise Alden Evans (guitar), Ol Beach (keyboards) and Steve Jackson (drums) and hail from Cornwall in the balmy English Southwest.  They probably live next door to PJ Harvey.

I suppose I would call them a traditional band in that they barely use any modern electronic trickery and meld proper, almost folky songs with edgy rock arrangements in the manner of say, Jethro Tull, but without all the proggy time signature changes and classical interludes.  This album has also been beautifully engineered by John Cornfield (Supergrass, Muse, Stone Roses etc) giving it a punchy, immediate sound with loads of space around the instruments so that you can hear exactly what’s going on.  Which means that you get to hear little bits of wah-wah guitar and the like – blimey, 1960s or what?

So, all in all, a nice little purchase and all the better for allowing iTunes to propose it and then not paying them to own it.  Made my day.


Alan said...

I have grave doubts about some of the recommendations these systems provide but at least you came out ahead this time.

Amazon seem to have some form of random element in their algorithm for recommendations. Earlier this year I bought two books on a related topic as part of the same Amazon order. Let's call the books X and Y for simplicity. Some while later, Amazon recommended that I buy book X. Why? Because I had recently bought book Y. A few rows further down the screen Amazon suggested I buy book Y because I had recently bought book X.

My favourite was Amazon recommending a bunch of CDs I had absolutely no interest in buying simply because I had recently purchased an Amazon gift certificate for someone else. A more honest statement may have been belong the lines of "You recently spent some money and we're hoping you might spend some more".

At least with iTunes you know they don't have any physical stock they are trying to dump on you.

music obsessive said...

Alan - Yes, I know. Amazon isn't immune either - you wouldn't believe the sort of stuff it comes up with. Well, perhaps you would.

All very irritating as it is basically an electronic foot in the door. Still, I came away with something worth having this time around.