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Your Thoughts - The Life or Death of the Album

Posted by: Adam Pfleider (12/10/09)
The "single" is a word that lost its worth at the beginning of the decade as its physical sales dwindled. As we approach the end of the same said decade, the digital medium certainly has changed that. With the ability to purchase the equivalent of a mixtape, some of us wonder what will become of the idea of the album - you know, all killer and no filler.

There's something intricate about an album that always messes with my brain when friends and work have the iTunes on shuffle. Is it me, or do you ever hear the end of a song and anticipate the breakdown, or vocal harmony or drum fill at the beginning of the next one? I anticipate the drums at the beginning of "Pattern Against User" after hearing the opening "Arcarsenal," or the guitars at the beginning of "Paris in Flames" after "Cross Out the Eyes."

So, what songs are stuck as followers to each other in your mind? Does it help that a good album creates those memories whether they're something as intentional as a concept album by The Dear Hunter or a great collection of songs like on Worship and Tribute? If you wish to divulge, what do you think about the idea of the album? Is it gone? Is it a way to separate the best from the worst? Can an artist make great songs, but a few bad ones that end up as filler to create an "okay" album? Discuss. Replies. Go.
 
Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 152
11:59 AM on 12/10/09
#2
Ska Senanake
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edison glass - time is fiction. Solid fucking album.
12:00 PM on 12/10/09
#3
Frinet
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For me its any song off Yellowcard's Ocean Avenue, it was the cd that really got me into this scene and I always start singing the next song's intro after anything off of it. It helps every song has a killer intro. The Aquabat's Charge!! is the same way now that I think of it :D.
12:01 PM on 12/10/09
#4
BrennanHickson
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Most of the albums I listen to lead into the next song. It may be because I listen to albums in order, repeatedly, or simply the fact that they've all grown on me.
12:02 PM on 12/10/09
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nrm8821
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for me the first 4 songs of Mutiny! by Set Your Goals. I feel like they always need to be together. As well as Kill Me Quickly into A Subtle Dagger on Thrice's Illusion of Safety. I personally don't want to see an end to the album but it almost seems like we're going back to how it was before with single's being released. A lot of bands now are focusing more on EP's than full lengths
12:05 PM on 12/10/09
#6
brianpaulie
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The only downside I think of some albums where all the songs flow with each other is they end up using the same chords in all the songs and they're basically re-writing the same song over and over. I feel like Set Your Goals "Mutiny" was one of those albums.
12:06 PM on 12/10/09
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nrm8821
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The only downside I think of some albums where all the songs flow with each other is they end up using the same chords in all the songs and they're basically re-writing the same song over and over. I feel like Set Your Goals "Mutiny" was one of those albums.
I'd have to go back and really listen. but that's exactly how I felt about Four Year Strong's full length
12:09 PM on 12/10/09
#8
sjb2k1
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Quote:
There's something intricate about an album that always messes with my brain when friends and work have the iTunes on shuffle. Is it me, or do you ever hear the end of a song and anticipate the breakdown, or vocal harmony or drum fill at the beginning of the next one?
yes, all the time when i have my ipod on shuffle. and then i get annoyed when i don't hear what i expect to. but it's my own damn fault. i usually end up going to the full album and putting on the song i expected, after that though. haha. an example off the top of my head is if i'm listening to anything off "take this to your grave".

i would hate to see the death of the album. if i don't like a song, i just skip it. no big deal. although on that same token, if i'm skipping 5 songs out of 10, then it should just be an EP (but that could always be personal opinion, someone else might like all 10 songs). realistically i could see a shift to EPs, though. short, sweet, just long enough to keep my attention span. america seems to be heading that way, anyway. no attention span whatsoever.

i realize i'm rambling. i'll stop now.
12:14 PM on 12/10/09
#9
MathewHeroic
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I'd have to go back and really listen. but that's exactly how I felt about Four Year Strong's full length

Seconded. Sometimes I wonder if bands do full lengths because they want to or because the labels want them.
12:24 PM on 12/10/09
irthesteve
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far too many to list, I only listen to full albums, rarely do i skip around
12:24 PM on 12/10/09
Ricketts
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I'm with you, I always anticipate the next song. An album, to me, is one complete listening experience and to set it on shuffle just kind of brings it down for me.
12:25 PM on 12/10/09
nrm8821
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Seconded. Sometimes I wonder if bands do full lengths because they want to or because the labels want them.
sadly it's prolly about 50/50. New Found Glory made Coming Home so they could fulfill their contract at Geffen (I think) before making the switch to Epitaph
12:28 PM on 12/10/09
knorr45
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The first songs that come to mind as being followers for me would be Tip of the Iceberg and Dig My Own Grave by NFG
12:28 PM on 12/10/09
justlikehoney
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"the guitars at the beginning of Paris in Flames after Cross Out the Eyes."

Relationship of Command
& Full Collapse -could hardly have thought of a better example myself
12:29 PM on 12/10/09
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The End Is Not The End by House Of Heroes - particularly the first eight songs (through "By Your Side". They could have ended the album right there and I would have been completely satisfied. I'm also pretty sure I can basically sing/air-guitar my way through those first 8 songs without needing to actually hear them. They just mesh so perfectly.
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