EMusic - C/D

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the Vintner's Lipogram wrote:
Hm maybe one should write a program that scoured the catalogue and found the best bargains from the track lengths... ;)

Heh, I downloaded John Cage's Empty Words (part III) from eMusic - two tracks, 74 minutes each.

They also have some live albums that I haven't seen elsewhere (search for "Schubas" and "Casbah" for starters.)

Ernest P. (ernestp), Sunday, 18 December 2005 07:17 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

I just downloaded the Akron/Family live album--just one long track and then a short song--and it is DEVASTATING. So good. Half of it is just a dude reading William Blake with crazy improv/noise in the background. It's great.

sweet earth flying (sweet earth flying), Sunday, 18 December 2005 14:55 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

like doug, i write for emusic, so i'm biased, obviously. but their catalogue is really pretty incredible - screamo, indie rock, jazz, world music, bizarro shit.... the electronic portion is getting much much better too - they just brought on K7, they got TVT, and playhouse is starting to trickle in...

philip sherburne (philip sherburne), Sunday, 18 December 2005 17:03 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

eMusic is (esp. for ILM-types) the best deal out there and nothing comes close.

I wish I could pay more for higher quality, or that the downloads were higher quality; it irks me to know that someday, like with my cassettes and my vinyl and my early CDs, that I'll probably upgrade a lot of what I picked up on eMusic because the bitrate is noticeable.

Nothing personal to Doug or Philip (two writers whose work I admire and like a lot) but I still do not find eMusic to be a community type of place for me where I want to spend time doing anything but downloading. There's a lot of quality writing and some of the lists are really great, but I can't seem to make eMusic a daily stop in my surfing. It's not a destination for me in that sense and I'm not sure why.

Also, the exclusive live stuff is a nice touch and I wish there was more of that (like the exclusive titles that the CIMS gets.)

don weiner (don weiner), Sunday, 18 December 2005 17:54 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

I always put off downloads when I was a member, thinking I'd do it the next day or picking between tracks, and kept getting screwed at the end of the month. They should really make it a rollover plan.

Erick Dampier is better than Shaq (miloaukerman), Sunday, 18 December 2005 20:54 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

i can't find enough songs i want in my 100 mp3 free trial!

Sororah T Massacre (blueski), Sunday, 18 December 2005 23:41 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

100? I only got 50 in my free trial. But that was hard enough, I wouldn't have wanted to have to think of another 50 that I could find on eMusic.

This was my download strategy:

1. Bloc Party - Silent Alarm (all tracks)
I've heard and liked the singles, I've skimmed through the rest at a listening station in some record store. I think it's a really good album, but before buying it I've wanted to spend some time listening to it straight through to be sure I separate my own impressions from the hype that surrounded it. [Conclusion: I'll buy the CD as soon as I can find it used.]

2. [remembering the notion, expressed in this thread, that it's good to download LONG tracks]
Eliane Radigue, Trilogie de la mort -- three hour-long tracks, beautiful drone-y electronic sounds, the smartest decision I made in this whole process

3. [spontaneously deciding to hunt down some individual tracks where I'm not interested in buying the whole album]
Annie - several tracks off Anniemal
Ladytron - several tracks off 604 and Light & Magic
Armand Van Helden - "U Don't Know Me" and "Flowerz"

4. [spontaneously deciding it's about time I finally checked out Derek Bailey]
Derek Bailey - Improvisations (all tracks)

5. [remembering I've been curious about Robert Rich but put off by all the New Age hoo-haw]
Robert Rich - Below Zero (all tracks)
still haven't listened to it

6. [remembering that ever since the recent Imogen Heap thread, I've been trying to find Todd Rundgren's "Pretending to Care," off the mid-80s album _A Capella_]
They don't have it, but they have a cover of it by a band called The Unherd.

That's 50 tracks, and I've unsubscribed. Part of the challenge is that I'm just not a music downloader, so anything I *really* want, I want on CD. The eMusic process was all about remembering things I *sort of* want.

National Roffle Association (Paul in Santa Cruz), Monday, 19 December 2005 03:22 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

pretty classic. i also subscribe to rhapsody as well, so those two combined give me a pretty massive advantage. i stream onto my work PC that i sit at for 60ish hours a week rhapsody when i need it and use emusic to purch a lot of tracks i want to burn etc. (or when rhaps doesn't have the stuff over on emusic.)

rhaps usually covers my nostalgic needs... you know, when some friend goes, "dude krokus!" i can actually give krokus a listen and leave it at that without spending much more than a few cents i suppose. etc etc. old hip hop records i never bought but have radio taped mixes of, etc etc.

one by one, emusic has steadily brought lot's and lot's of "want list" labels onboard. i never thought i'd see tzadik come, but here they are. or dischord. touch and go! shit, those dudes charge out the wazoo for their records at the store, but here they are! emusic has really become kind of a paradise for back catalog siftings. i keep hoping drag city will come, but they seem pretty stiff on such things. (do they do itunes even? i'm too lazy to fire up itunes right now.)

as far as i'm concerned, services like emusic are saints for kicking DRM to the curb and letting us be honest fans. (for now anyway. legislation always pending in one form or another.)


msp (mspa), Monday, 19 December 2005 03:43 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

five months pass...
Classic. $20/month for 90 songs/month at the moment (you can go cheaper, but you have to do a whole year at once) plus no freaking DRM.

Certainly far from having everything I want, but I've already downloaded tons of stuff I've been fiending for for a while.

Also great to have for making my wedding mixes.

Abbadavid Berman (Hurting), Wednesday, 24 May 2006 20:40 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Ha ha, I turned you!

Forksclovetofu (Forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 24 May 2006 21:03 (twelve years ago) Permalink

You sure did pal.

Abbadavid Berman (Hurting), Wednesday, 24 May 2006 21:05 (twelve years ago) Permalink

More and more, this is seeming like a really good idea.

jaymc (jaymc), Wednesday, 24 May 2006 21:09 (twelve years ago) Permalink

it's a pretty good deal if you're into instrumental art metal bands like Boris/Pelican/Isis etc... since most of those full albums have at most 7 or 8 songs long songs. your monthly quota can get you 4 or 5 of these albums.

It sucks for a lot of comedy albums though since they have lots of short tracks. Your monthly 40 song quota can be filled with 2 albums.

pinder (pinder), Wednesday, 24 May 2006 21:16 (twelve years ago) Permalink

The quota thing is the only part I don't like -- at about 25 cents a song, even a 20-song album costs $5.

Abbadavid Berman (Hurting), Wednesday, 24 May 2006 21:24 (twelve years ago) Permalink

The trick is to not download the whole album. I know that rankles the completist in you guys, but after you pull skits from the hip hop (which I generally do when I rip it anyway), you're generally down to a good seven tracks.

I really want to write for these guys. There are so many bitchin' compilations that are unsung on their site.

Forksclovetofu (Forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 24 May 2006 22:12 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I can't work out how to see what they have available, without signing up. There are no links to any type of catalogue, only to the Register page. Is there some kinda trick?

cnwb (cnwb), Thursday, 25 May 2006 05:38 (twelve years ago) Permalink

It's okay. You can stop looking. I found the back door:

cnwb (cnwb), Thursday, 25 May 2006 05:54 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I really like it although if you're in the UK it can be really frustrating as it seems a lot of albums haven't been licensed for download outside the US because they're on a different label. So recently I would have downloaded the new Calexico, The Streets, Eagles of Death Metal and they've just got the whole White Stripes catalogue and the Raconteurs but none of them are available in the UK.

Having said that there are still lots of interesting things to download and at £8 or so for 65 tracks a month, it's well worth it.

mms (mms), Thursday, 25 May 2006 07:42 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I've been using this for a while and it's really very good. Got the new Scott Walker album the other day, for example.
I am getting sick of the 'not available for download in your country' messages, though. So many things that I want I just can't get...

Greig (treefell), Thursday, 25 May 2006 09:18 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Yeah, I got the Scott Walker too, surprised to find it was one I could actually download.

mms (mms), Thursday, 25 May 2006 10:17 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Some of their selection is a little odd, like with certain jazz musicians they'll have a bunch of lesser albums but none of the best stuff. I can only assume this is because some of the better jazz labels aren't on board yet. Hopefully this will change soon.

Abbadavid Berman (Hurting), Thursday, 25 May 2006 11:13 (twelve years ago) Permalink

For example, they have a whole bunch of Coltrane but none of the Atlantic or Impulse stuff.

Abbadavid Berman (Hurting), Thursday, 25 May 2006 11:14 (twelve years ago) Permalink

"I'd appreciate a higher-volume account option than the current max of 90 tracks for $20 a month, though (ie EMUSIC CAN YOU HEAR ME I WANT TO GIVE YOU MORE MONEY)."

This is the most frustrating thing about the site. You can now buy additional slightly-more-expensive 'booster packs' when your 90 downloads have been used up, but you're only allowed 5 or so of these per month. I'd spend twice as much on emusic than I do already if only they allowed me to!

slb, Thursday, 25 May 2006 11:29 (twelve years ago) Permalink

can you not open another parallel account under a different name? might need to use a different credit card but...

koogy wonderland (koogs), Thursday, 25 May 2006 11:39 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I'm sure you could if you used a different e-mail address and credit card.

Abbadavid Berman (Hurting), Thursday, 25 May 2006 11:42 (twelve years ago) Permalink

you only need a different email address.

a.b. (alanbanana), Thursday, 25 May 2006 13:40 (twelve years ago) Permalink

This article suggests that they're starting to negotiate per-artist contracts with some major-label stuff, which probably explains why the White Stripes catalog just went up:


The Ryko catalog is still up, even though Warners is buying in to their distro channels, so maybe more majors will test the waters a eMusic.

bendy (bendy), Thursday, 25 May 2006 14:05 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Browsing just now, and noticed that their Fall section is now divided into studio albums and live albums. Of course, Live At The Witch Trials is included w/live albums. Brief snarky moment of amusement.

If I'm remembering correctly, eMusic used to have some Impulse jazz (Alice Coltrane was Impulse? They used to have her.) but lost it right before they switched over to their current pricing plan.

dlp9001 (dlp9001), Thursday, 25 May 2006 15:46 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Classic. Just for starters: they have a good selection of Go-Betweens albums for the uninitiated (though I don't think they have the recent remastered versions) and their Editor's Picks are mostly excellent. And you don't have to sign up for a whole year. You can cancel a subscription any time.

Roy Kasten (Roy Kasten), Friday, 26 May 2006 16:52 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Funny reading the first post on this thread and my naive 2003 version of download economics! Carry on.

mcd (mcd), Friday, 26 May 2006 17:08 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I dig it, but the non rollover policy sucks.

i do wish they'd spell my last album right, rather than making "fahrenheit 69" into "fahrenh eit 69"

hopefully they'll get the new one right.

question - if you guys like the free emusic track, do you download the rest of the album?

Uncle Tom (Uncle Tom), Friday, 26 May 2006 22:49 (twelve years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
Even yet still more classic than last time I said classic, but for the same reasons. My 80s vinyl replacement project CONTINUES APACE w/labels like (some) ZTT added -- I've been v slow in getting digital copies of e.g. A Secret Wish and Who's Afraid, but now they're MINE @ click of button haha! Plus early Foetus albums I scoured London's second-hand shops for in the late 80's, willing to pay like £30 apiece!

Also, although I don't like the non-rollover, it is part of what makes them a bit Quirky rather than Totally Streamlined, which I kinda like. The per-track rather than per-time cost is another example. (Though it means my quizgeek desire for The National Anthems of the World will go unfulfilled on that particular site.)

I really want to write for these guys. There are so many bitchin' compilations that are unsung on their site.

-- Forksclovetofu

Ooh such as? Account replenishes in five days...

The Vintner's Lipogram (OleM), Friday, 14 July 2006 23:21 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Oh and Uncle Tom, have you mailed them and asked them to correct? Maltaggage is one of the few really annoying things abt emusic.

("You've got your dick on backwards"????)

The Vintner's Lipogram (OleM), Friday, 14 July 2006 23:25 (twelve years ago) Permalink

/what makes them a bit Quirky rather than Totally Streamlined/

The holes and treasures in their collection reproduce the act of searching through a giagatic used record store better than anything else online. When I lived in Pittsburgh, I lived accross the street from Jerry's Records. My eMusic subscription feels like wandering over there- I don't know what I'm going to pick up, but I'm probably going to learn about something I never heard of before.

bendy (bendy), Saturday, 15 July 2006 10:50 (twelve years ago) Permalink

i realized yesterday i was on the last day of my emusic month and still had like 75 downloads. i had fun going through and grabbing things somewhat randomly (a couple of those fania reissues, some funkadelic, paul bley, assorted hip-hop). now i have new music to listen to for the next couple weeks. and 90 new downloads, whee.

gypsy mothra (gypsy mothra), Saturday, 15 July 2006 13:34 (twelve years ago) Permalink

That reminds me -- hiphop emusic recommendations, anyone?

The Vintner's Lipogram (OleM), Saturday, 15 July 2006 13:37 (twelve years ago) Permalink

i got a couple tracks of that jacki-o album that are good.

gypsy mothra (gypsy mothra), Saturday, 15 July 2006 18:12 (twelve years ago) Permalink

CLASSIC times 500000000!
I hysterically love emusic.

clodia pulchra (emo by proxy), Saturday, 15 July 2006 22:42 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Immediately scores 5,000,000+ pts over iTunes just for being able to search by label.

Telephonething (Telephonething), Sunday, 16 July 2006 00:06 (twelve years ago) Permalink

inspired by the this heat thread i just downloaded this heat and part of the chrome box. whooo.

gypsy mothra (gypsy mothra), Sunday, 16 July 2006 18:21 (twelve years ago) Permalink

yes, I did email them - and no, they didn't say reply. Much like the schmoes at allmusic when I tried to correct the numerous errors in our entry.

FYI "You've got your dick on backwards" is a parody of the Sonics "you've got your head on backwards." which kinda paved the way for our upcoming "blowfly's punk rock party" (due in september) though when we cut "...backwards" we never imagined doing a whole record like that.

as far as hip hop on emusic -- all the rhymesayers stuff is on there, as is most of the def jux stuff and the coup via epitaph. obviously, there aren't many major label artists on emusic - so the hip hop is kinda sparse.

Uncle Tom (Uncle Tom), Tuesday, 18 July 2006 00:52 (twelve years ago) Permalink

four weeks pass...
ohmigod...ohmigod... found the mp3s on the saregama label. 200+pages worth of bollywood soundtracks. suffering from indian psychedelic funk poisoning...

GOD PUNCH TO HAWKWIND (yournullfame), Tuesday, 15 August 2006 23:36 (twelve years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
so this is a good thing, yes? anything else I should know beyond what's on this thread already?

geoff (gcannon), Monday, 18 September 2006 02:22 (twelve years ago) Permalink


geoff (gcannon), Monday, 18 September 2006 13:45 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I love it. The only thing is make sure you use your downloads before they run out. This can get a little tricky, but it's worth the trouble.

A-ron Hubbard (Hurting), Monday, 18 September 2006 13:50 (twelve years ago) Permalink

they should roll over the remaining downloads quota each month so you can still get your money's worth if you don't get round to downloading enough songs within a 30 day period. the frequent 'not available outside the US' thing is bullshit too but i know that's not their fault.

Konal Doddz (blueski), Monday, 18 September 2006 13:53 (twelve years ago) Permalink

sometimes the catalog of certain labels seems to contract and expand, so again, just like a record store, its good to snag somthing when you find it, lest it dissapear from your "Save for Later" list.

bendy (bendy), Monday, 18 September 2006 13:54 (twelve years ago) Permalink

But there are great ways to use up your downloads at the end of the month - you can just go through, say, the Folkways catalog and grab a bunch of random stuff for example.

A-ron Hubbard (Hurting), Monday, 18 September 2006 13:57 (twelve years ago) Permalink

Does anyone know what the quality of the mp3s is now on eMusic? An album I just dl'd sounds WRONG to me, but it could be the new remaster.

A-ron Hubbard (Hurting), Thursday, 21 September 2006 14:44 (twelve years ago) Permalink

I love eMusic. But I use it only for items I wouldn't seek out at the record store. Put differently, it's a great service to fill out a catalogue, and the fact that I've got to "use or lose" my monthly downloads encourages me to try stuff rather than sqander my montly allotment.

Daniel, Esq., Thursday, 21 September 2006 15:28 (twelve years ago) Permalink

It's clear that they've been barely keeping the site ticking over since they decided to switch their backend to 7digital and putting all their effort into the new site.
It looked from the beta test that a lot of content that should have been on the site for months (new releases from Sub Pop as one example) would appear after the switch over.
Then the launch happened and labels like Sub Pop, Warp, Bella Union suddenly have no or very little in the catalogue. There's been no real explanation as to why this stuff hasn't appeared in the new live site but also no fanfare of new and returning labels. As a UK user it's very nice to see nearly 400 records turn up from Domino after years away.
There are a lot of disgruntled older users out there and I don't really see why anyone new would want to join up but I'm hopeful that once they sort their content issues out it will continue to be more than worth the money I pay for it.

treefell, Friday, 12 May 2017 19:51 (one year ago) Permalink

I've been a member since 2008. I've come close to cancelling a few times, what with the constant turnover in labels, sometimes it takes a while to find things you want. I just went there today and saw they've completely redone the site and it looks like half my wishlist has vanished - victims of label turnover I guess. It was great when you could get Blue Note jazz records from the '60s and major-label stuff. I almost cancelled after that disappeared, but then I found enough independent-label metal to keep me going. Now, I get most of that from Bandcamp, which has much better selection, so I'm not sure if I'll stick with eMusic much longer.

o. nate, Saturday, 13 May 2017 01:00 (one year ago) Permalink

Looks like they've added a bunch of avant-jazz labels: HatHut, ESP, Tzadik. I may have to start listening to that kind of stuff again.

o. nate, Saturday, 13 May 2017 01:05 (one year ago) Permalink

three months pass...

Anyone want to help me with some Tzadik recommendations? I basically stopped paying attention around 2000.

o. nate, Wednesday, 23 August 2017 01:01 (one year ago) Permalink

Every time I see this thread bumped I expect a link to a news article saying they've finally folded.

bumbling my way toward the light or wahtever (hardcore dilettante), Wednesday, 23 August 2017 01:57 (one year ago) Permalink

hmm, I've been disappointed by recent Tzadik albums I've tried. Anything written by or featuring Zorn in the last 15 years seems to be an aimless mess.

I like these from after 2000:

Kayo Dot, Choirs of the Eye, 2003
Wadada Leo Smith, Lake Biwa, 2004
the Scott Johnson reissue, John Somebody
Ayelet Rose Gottlieb, Mayim Rabim, 2006

Einstein, Kazanga, Sitar (abanana), Wednesday, 23 August 2017 04:18 (one year ago) Permalink

I don't have any interest in the no-wave improvisational klezmer punk side of the label, but I have dipped into their New Music offerings. IIRC, I liked:

Maryanne Amacher - Sound Characters, Sound Characters vol. 2
Alvin Curran - Animal Behavior, Theme Park, Lost Marbles, Shofar Rags
Arnold Dreyblatt - Animal Magnetism, Who's Who In Central & East Europe 1933
Annie Gosfield - Burnt Ivory and Loose Wires, Lost Signals and Drifting Satellites, Almost Truths And Open Deceptions
Lukas Ligeti - Mystery System, Afrikan Machinery
Lois Vierk - River Beneath the River
The Cracow Klezmer Band - Balan: Book of Angels Vol.5, Remembrance

The latter group could be described as Penderecki does klezmer, and may get me into the genre yet.

tactical piñata (Sanpaku), Wednesday, 23 August 2017 04:50 (one year ago) Permalink

last month I got every single Haydn Symphony from here for like $6.99 ...

sansa riff (sarahell), Wednesday, 23 August 2017 06:24 (one year ago) Permalink

The Morton Feldman Patterns in a Chromatic Field on tzadik is fantastic.

Also, emusic has reverted to certain albums which are one long track being priced super cheap. I just got two Feldman chamber music albums on Bridge Records for like a buck each.

harbinger of failure (Jon not Jon), Wednesday, 23 August 2017 11:39 (one year ago) Permalink

seven months pass...

Now chasing the cryptocurrency craze.

adam the (abanana), Friday, 6 April 2018 19:20 (one year ago) Permalink

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