Addicted to Noise: Let's talk about long-gone music websites

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Remember Addicted to Noise? Anyone else read these websites regularly when they were still going? What else was out there in 96, 97, etc.?

Mark Rich@rdson, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 21:25 (fifteen years ago) link

Drone On list is still kinda active

sexyDancer, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 21:30 (fifteen years ago) link

Who edited Addicted to Noise? Seems like it was someone pretty well-known.

Mark Rich@rdson, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 21:34 (fifteen years ago) link

My main AtN memory is of reading a review of If You're Feeling Sinister, clicking on the sample clip for the title track, and being, you know, really pleased.

nabisco, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 21:38 (fifteen years ago) link

AtN was edited by the guy that does, yeah? Michael Goldberg?

David R., Wednesday, 28 March 2007 22:02 (fifteen years ago) link

Yeah, that's right. And has been around for a good while as well actually. I kind of forget about that one.

Mark Rich@rdson, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 22:15 (fifteen years ago) link

Oh man I loved Addicted to Noise. archives sorta work.

lukas, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 22:29 (fifteen years ago) link

There's something very Douglas Coupland / pre-bubble SF about that old site.

lukas, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 22:30 (fifteen years ago) link

I worked for ATN/SonicNet in '99-'00 and contributed as an album reviewer for 18 months afterward. That was a great albeit chaotic experience. A LOT of talent and drive ... the work ethic the place breeded was awe-inspiring and intimidating. There may not be anything like that again because 1. Michael Goldberg invented the concept of breaking fast turnaround music news and 2. the labels and managers hadn;t caught up to us yet ... so were pretty free-wheeling and very artist-centric but also extremely credible when it came to covering things like the Woodstock riots and the many trials of ODB and Puffy. Best feeling ever was when I broke the news that Big Pun was 698 pounds when he died -- that was MY scoop because we could publish it well before the NYC tabloids and the wire services.

While I'm far removed from that experience now, it stays with me. The thing that makes me the proudest? My two closest associates on the staff now work for Urge and Rolling Stone. It's unbelievable I got a chance to learn from and feed off of guys that good at the music journalism game. Also, Billy Altman was my reviews editor -- doesn't get much better than that.

Jiminy Krokus, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 22:48 (fifteen years ago) link

music on the web around then for me was like AtN music news of the world + gbv Postal Blowfish list + usenet

dmr, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 22:49 (fifteen years ago) link

FWIW -- SonicNet essentially became MTV News Online ... so our spirit lives on even if the body has expired.

Jiminy Krokus, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 22:51 (fifteen years ago) link

Didn't Meltzer have a column there? I remember that syringe logo.

walterkranz, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 23:23 (fifteen years ago) link

Dave Marsh worked with them ... not sure about Meltzer. But Seth Mnookin and Neil Strauss essentially got their start writing for Michael in the early days of ATN.

Jiminy Krokus, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 23:43 (fifteen years ago) link

Just looked at, now it's just a VH1 search page.

Mark Rich@rdson, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 23:43 (fifteen years ago) link

I was on droneon back when i had to use a Vax terminal to check my emails.

dan selzer, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 23:50 (fifteen years ago) link

more atn/sonicnet writers and columnists and etc: greil marcus, chet flippo, robert duncan, richard gehr, douglas wolk, yadda yadda yadda. kinda like ILM but it paid a little better and loaded a little slower.

fact checking cuz, Wednesday, 28 March 2007 23:54 (fifteen years ago) link

That's right, forgot Griel Marcus, and as I mentioned, Billy Altman was the reviews editor the last couple of years.

Jiminy Krokus, Thursday, 29 March 2007 00:02 (fifteen years ago) link

96-97, yes...but what about 1993? My sister's then-boyfriend knew the guys behind this and in a visit in 1994 or so, I think, I got to go to the offices. Shoulda taken a camera...

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 29 March 2007 00:06 (fifteen years ago) link

The site launched in the fall of 1994 ... but yes the work began on it in 1993. I started reading ATN pretty much from the beginning ... they ran an item on Pearl Jam in one of the first couple of issues. I was hooked. Original logo featured syringes rather than guitars.

Jiminy Krokus, Thursday, 29 March 2007 00:11 (fifteen years ago) link

IUMA was both primitive and futuristic and fantastic. like a mid-century modern website. 1993 now seems like a whole different millennium!

fact checking cuz, Thursday, 29 March 2007 00:34 (fifteen years ago) link

Doesn't it now. ;-)

IUMA was one of those steps that kinda had to happen, in that somebody was going to figure out something. It provided a baseline; quite arguably MySpace exists because of it and what followed slowly but surely (Tom Wossname's original idea involved a music community site and clearly the basic features of MySpace band sites parallel all that IUMA initially promised, aside from questions of royalty and direct sales).

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 29 March 2007 01:40 (fifteen years ago) link

omg i remember atn and iuma... back when the internet needed directorizing.

s1ocki, Thursday, 29 March 2007 01:41 (fifteen years ago) link

ATN was one of the first sites I looked at on the web, and when I got home internet access I would visit every day, read each review intently, and pick one of the albums to download the .au sample from, because more than one would take too long on my modem connection. Then I'd convert small chunks of the better ones to ScreamTracker3-readable sample formats and make terrible noises out of 15-second excerpts from albums I'd never heard. Ah, nostalgia.

Now I think about it I have no idea why I stopped visiting, since I guess it was before the site died. Huh.

a passing spacecadet, Thursday, 29 March 2007 02:18 (fifteen years ago) link

Can someone point me to the Drone On list?

Do you subscribe with this address?

I tried to join in the past and nothing happened.


Brooker Buckingham, Thursday, 29 March 2007 02:29 (fifteen years ago) link

DroneOn is currently hosted by none other than ILXor Elvis Telecom, via his site:


Ned Raggett, Thursday, 29 March 2007 02:31 (fifteen years ago) link

Looking to see what else is/was on Quartzcity, I see he hosted the Pure-Impure list but terminated it in '04. I had no idea it was still going after about 2000, when I was subscribed and one day it just stopped arriving.

I'd have resubscribed had I known, because I missed it; there was discussion about most of the stuff I liked from droneon with not so much of the stuff I didn't like (most of the stuff which grew into today's improv-drone-psych-folk-whatever). Which is staggeringly inarticulate and unspecific, but it's been so long since I read either that it's the best I can do.

a passing spacecadet, Thursday, 29 March 2007 02:46 (fifteen years ago) link Newsgroup exists, but the sprit is long gone.

Geir Hongro, Thursday, 29 March 2007 08:31 (fifteen years ago) link

I liked the american 'song-poem' site, but as soon as I got a decent link to d/l tracks, they all went offline!

Mark G, Thursday, 29 March 2007 08:52 (fifteen years ago) link

However, when I got made redundant from my last job, that coincided with someone granting me (accidentally) a non-websense-blocked internet access, so I was able to d/l loads of Clash gigs from the 'Clash archive' before they removed that for obvious copyright issues.

Mark G, Thursday, 29 March 2007 08:54 (fifteen years ago) link

speaking of clash gigs and copyright issues, wolfgangs vault is a pretty great place to go right now for live shows, and a place that we may very well one day be remembering as a long-gone music website.

fact checking cuz, Thursday, 29 March 2007 14:34 (fifteen years ago) link

i too spent quite a bit of my work hours on droneon at the end of last century.

andrew m., Thursday, 29 March 2007 15:03 (fifteen years ago) link

I loved loved loved Addicted To Noise. Read it religiously and took their word as gospel, although I think the only specific album it got me to buy was Kula Shaker's K ("Orgasmic"). Never was the same after turning to Sonicnet, and eventually it all kind of got subsumed under the news stream IIRC. Great content, though.

Doctor Casino, Thursday, 29 March 2007 15:26 (fifteen years ago) link!

I used to watch stuff on there all the time. It was running while I still lived in Chicago and I'd see those peeps documenting so many shows at the Bottle, the Lounge Ax, Fireside, 6Odam, etc. So many shows I didn't realize I'd missed until they popped up on there. They also had short films, writing, and other stuff. They had a few episodes of Chic-A-Go-Go too, including the one with the Scissor Girls and the Monks (where Kelly Kuvo shaved the top of her head in tribute to the Monks).

I always wondered what happened to the original tapes of all those live shows though...

city worker, Thursday, 29 March 2007 15:42 (fifteen years ago) link

I'll never forget the day that cdnow bought out music-boulevard...

Pleasant Plains, Thursday, 29 March 2007 15:48 (fifteen years ago) link

Thanks for the Droneon link, Ned!

Brooker Buckingham, Thursday, 29 March 2007 15:59 (fifteen years ago) link

For one shining month, February of 1999, Music Boulevard was the greatest website to have ever existed.

Garrett Martin, Thursday, 29 March 2007 16:56 (fifteen years ago) link

I forgot about too pure. I was a fond lurker there and on the droneon list for many years. Learned about soooo many things from droneon.

walterkranz, Thursday, 29 March 2007 17:09 (fifteen years ago) link

LOL iuma. totally forgot about that one.

don't think I was ever on Drone On ... I remember checking out Hyperreal a little bit ...

dmr, Thursday, 29 March 2007 17:11 (fifteen years ago) link

Yeah, DroneOn was great, picked up on a lot of great music from there. Ye Olde Bowery Electric days.

Mark Rich@rdson, Thursday, 29 March 2007 18:31 (fifteen years ago) link

RIP Pure-Impure. I still IM with some people from that one.

William Selman, Thursday, 29 March 2007 19:18 (fifteen years ago) link

v-rave, the virtual rave, care of hyperreal, right?

before I joined droneon, I was on the New Music and post-classical mailing lists. I met Bob Bannister, Jim O'Rourke and Elliot Sharp through the "New Music" list. Maybe Bob was on DroneOn.

dan selzer, Thursday, 29 March 2007 19:50 (fifteen years ago) link

RIP Pure-Impure. I still IM with some people from that one.

If there's any kind of interest I can start pure-impure back up, but I'd rather folks join DroneOn to get the traffic back up. In the two years that I ran pure-impure, there were exactly 29 posts.

Elvis Telecom, Thursday, 29 March 2007 19:58 (fifteen years ago) link

Maybe Bob was on DroneOn.

I think he still is actually

Elvis Telecom, Thursday, 29 March 2007 20:02 (fifteen years ago) link

I think it's finally gone off the air so I can mention it now, but I was on the Chugchanga list for a long long time.

Elvis Telecom, Thursday, 29 March 2007 20:05 (fifteen years ago) link

Uh, The List That Dare Not Be Mentioned is still kicking, CB.

David R., Thursday, 29 March 2007 20:12 (fifteen years ago) link

i was on drone on and chug for a bit, they were def. awesome. also wrote for addicted to noise, sonicnet, cdnow, some other places starting in '97 or so...

the '90s websites i contributed to and personally miss the most do not seem to be archived though: WORD and FEED, neither too terribly music-centric. but both paid really well and were pretty much a dream to work for.

pardon me for pining over burst bubbles.

Mike McGooney-gal, Thursday, 29 March 2007 22:12 (fifteen years ago) link

Okay, this thread has made me waste part of the afternoon poring over the I remember that Velocity Girl review was one of the first things I read there.

I forgot how much I hated how the site's "Hi-Fi" version made my poor primitive computer go all wonky.

A. Begrand, Thursday, 29 March 2007 22:30 (fifteen years ago) link


oh yeah, I def. read both of those. they pushed a lot of weird/cool stuff with design, too.

dmr, Thursday, 29 March 2007 22:40 (fifteen years ago) link

Uh, The List That Dare Not Be Mentioned is still kicking, CB.

Err... Why? Or more to the point, what's it like these days?

Elvis Telecom, Friday, 30 March 2007 00:12 (fifteen years ago) link

Because folks need to talk about Spirit & Black Oak Arkansas somewhere! Besides Seward threads, that is.

David R., Friday, 30 March 2007 01:14 (fifteen years ago) link

Actually more traffic on that list than there's been in awhile. But as David says, boil off the classic rock talk and it gets sporadic at times. Still, if you're going to listen to folks talk about classic rock, better there than most other places I can think of.

Jeff Wright, Friday, 30 March 2007 01:48 (fifteen years ago) link

I just looked through the reviews archive on that AtN link posted by A.Begrand and I feel like I read every single one of them at the time... which is kind of frustrating considering how there's some great albums on there that I didn't get round to picking up until much later.

Was there any more Pure-Impure activity between 2000 and 2002, Elvis? I wonder what happened to it that it stopped turning up for me. I even happened to meet a poster locally by chance (! pretty weird considering where I lived and my sheer terribleness at meeting anyone) and he agreed that it had stopped working. I don't know how the hell we managed to have that conversation or how stalkerish I looked by the end of it.

I just realised that I've spent the past while thinking Doomed to Obscurity e-zine was called Delusions of Adequacy and being amazed that it was still going. Oops.

a passing spacecadet, Friday, 30 March 2007 02:27 (fifteen years ago) link

fifteen years pass...

New book coming out?

Jean Arthur Rank (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 9 September 2022 22:02 (three weeks ago) link

A collection. And there is also his James Calvin Wilsey bio, Wicked Game.

Jean Arthur Rank (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 13 September 2022 00:30 (three weeks ago) link

I miss buying CDs from CDNow. Does that count?

Loud guitars shit all over "Bette Davis Eyes" (NYCNative), Tuesday, 13 September 2022 01:58 (three weeks ago) link

Yeah,they were a great source for affordable CDs. I just checked my email archive, I last bought from CDNow in Nov 2002!

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Tuesday, 13 September 2022 02:20 (three weeks ago) link

I miss They shipped globally to NZ and once accidentally sent me a McLusky CD with a big vinyl haul, which I was stoked with.

The Ghost Club, Tuesday, 13 September 2022 05:31 (three weeks ago) link

just bought a record off dude who ran the old gridface techno / idm website

the late great, Tuesday, 13 September 2022 05:37 (three weeks ago) link

was trying to remember the name of another late 90s / early 00s website, very stripped down, practically a newsletter. focused on detroit techno and melodic idm / techno labels like clear, defocus, delsin / ann aimee, etc

the late great, Tuesday, 13 September 2022 05:39 (three weeks ago) link

Yeah, Insound was a great source for NZ stuff. Last ordered from them in 2007!

Back early 00's, I'd compare prices from Amazon, AmazonUK, eBay,, CDNow, Musicstack, Vinyl Tap, eil and a bunch of smaller local and UK stores. Almost always found what I wanted and usually at a good price.

CDEurope hit my radar in 1994 - you had to telnet into it! They seemingly listed everything ever released but you wouldn't know if they could actually get any of it. At some point they changed their policy from "charge your card when you order" to "charge your card when we ship" so it was no risk to order every weird CD single I ever wanted. Got a lot of them, too!

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Tuesday, 13 September 2022 14:15 (three weeks ago) link

I used to love a jazz n groove podcast/website called Bending Corners. It kind of went dormant back in 2014, and I thought it was gone for good. Lo and behold, he posted a couple of mixes in 2020 and 2021. Now I'm wondering if he will post any more. I guess I could email him.

immodesty blaise (jimbeaux), Tuesday, 13 September 2022 14:24 (three weeks ago) link

Not really a music “website” per se but: does anybody else remember those kiosks at music stores you would either scan a CD’s barcode or you could type in a manual search and it would give miscellaneous release data about the album? It would also give an album review as well and oh my god I used to spend hours at Camelot Music wondering what some anonymous hack thought about Pet Sounds (“This is not just any ordinary album. This is THE great American pop album… It’s the lesser-known songs that really shine… It has been suggested that angels were hovering over Brian when he was making Pet Sounds. There is no doubt about it.”) or Never Mind the Bollocks (“the ultimate first-album-as-greatest-hits exercise. Pub jukeboxers remain terrified of it to this day.”) or whatever. It also showed what an album’s ranking on NME’s Greatest Albums of All-Time list from 1993 was. I made it my mission in life to locate and buy every CD on that list, but then I bought the KLF’s White Room LP, gave it a listen and was like “Well this sucks!” and gave up. It was the All Music Guide before the All Music Guide existed. Would love to read those reviews again.

Mr. Snrub, Tuesday, 13 September 2022 19:25 (three weeks ago) link

was trying to remember the name of another late 90s / early 00s website, very stripped down, practically a newsletter. focused on detroit techno and melodic idm / techno labels like clear, defocus, delsin / ann aimee, etc

― the late great

btw i think this was, which eventually turned into and then (i think?) became the dutch dance vinyl distributor of the same name (i think they also run the delsin webshop)

hard to tell because it looks like only ever grabbed the front page, and the front page was always ... cryptic

the late great, Tuesday, 13 September 2022 19:38 (three weeks ago) link

i wrote for both and neumu is still up, amazingly enough:

tylerw, Tuesday, 13 September 2022 20:05 (three weeks ago) link

And they're looking for interns!

You can't spell Fearless without Earle (President Keyes), Tuesday, 13 September 2022 20:06 (three weeks ago) link

even the mp3s still work

tylerw, Tuesday, 13 September 2022 20:36 (three weeks ago) link

It's a trip in 2022 to scroll down and see CoCoRoise and French Kicks!

a superficial sheeb of intelligence (jon /via/ chi 2.0), Tuesday, 13 September 2022 20:45 (three weeks ago) link

Neil Young's new album —— LIVING WITH WAR!

tylerw, Tuesday, 13 September 2022 20:48 (three weeks ago) link

snrub offtm

Vance Vance Devolution (sic), Tuesday, 13 September 2022 21:09 (three weeks ago) link

I loved the Velvet Rope industry gossip forums

beamish13, Wednesday, 14 September 2022 18:36 (three weeks ago) link

Any of y'all remember PlayLouder (kind of a British Pitchfork)? I checked it regularly from 2002 through 2006, then it turned into a quasi-Napster, as gradually the articles, the reviews, then the Big Ass Adverts, all disappeared. It sure was fun while it lasted, though. TALK!

Here's an archived link to one of my fave reviews (The Libertines' 2004 album). Clicking the letters in the alphabet above the heading opens up all kinds of reviews from their archive.

Front-loaded albums are musical gerrymandering (Prefecture), Thursday, 15 September 2022 03:55 (two weeks ago) link

Hell yeah, PlayLoyder was fucking amazing! Best music website ever. More than any other site, you could tell the writers had such a genuine enthusiasm for new music. They just sounded so giddy with their singles of the week reviews and their live reviews. I guess lots of exclamation points is all you need. And unlike Pitchfork they weren’t afraid to really let loose and slag off the albums that deserved a slagging. I remember they once ran a news article called “Arrrgh! Shut the Fuck Up NME, You’re Wrong!” in response to the NME naming the Smiths as the most influential band of all-time. And me being a music-loving 14-year-old it was right up my alley. They had really great writers too, like Adam Alphabet and Sarah Bee and Luke Turner and Steven Wells and I think even a couple ILXors wrote for them as well. The day they turned into British Napster I was devastated. I just kept clicking all around the site like, “Where the hell are the reviews?!?!” Very sad.

Mr. Snrub, Thursday, 15 September 2022 11:32 (two weeks ago) link

Like, take a look at this:

Would those humor-hating serious bastards at Pitchfork ever publish something like that in a million years?

Mr. Snrub, Thursday, 15 September 2022 11:38 (two weeks ago) link

There was an era of P4K where stunt reviews and 0.0 ratings featured, although I don't know how many of those remain on the site now.

Position Position, Thursday, 15 September 2022 12:51 (two weeks ago) link

i loved PlayLouder.
i was so active on the message board that i nearly got sacked for time wasting.
ended up submitting a couple of pieces for them (Dolby Live in Chicago), and have met up/had beers etc with several of the gang at various places over the years.

mark e, Thursday, 15 September 2022 14:33 (two weeks ago) link

does anybody else remember those kiosks at music stores you would either scan a CD’s barcode or you could type in a manual search and it would give miscellaneous release data about the album?

the company behind those was muze, which was where i worked before i worked for, um, addicted to noise. every single piece of data in that database was manually entered by a small army of poorly paid writers and musicians copying it off cd liner notes. i did a good deal of that data entry and i probably wrote some of those reviews you read, which were designed to hype the records at the retailers who were our clients. and i'm just going to say we took our jobs really fucking seriously and leave it at that!

It was the All Music Guide before the All Music Guide existed.

amg competed with muze for a while and then eventually just bought the company. so, yes!

fact checking cuz, Thursday, 15 September 2022 17:02 (two weeks ago) link

Thirteen-year-old me is very happy to meet you!

Mr. Snrub, Thursday, 15 September 2022 20:51 (two weeks ago) link

nice to meet you, 13-year-old snrub, and sorry about the whole KLF thing!

fact checking cuz, Thursday, 15 September 2022 22:22 (two weeks ago) link

Not a website, but in the early 00's there was a Windows desktop app that listed something like half a dozen streaming stations (which you picked) and, critically, what was playing on each at the time, so it was easy to click from one to another based on the artist. Anyone remember what this was called? And is there something similar these days?

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Tuesday, 20 September 2022 20:45 (two weeks ago) link


Christine Green Leafy Dragon Indigo, Tuesday, 20 September 2022 21:27 (two weeks ago) link

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