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The soundtrack to my dream…

… last night was Coldplay’s “Don’t Panic”

Hmm.

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Warning Sign by Coldplay

A warning sign
I missed the good part then I realized
I started looking and the bubble burst
I started looking for excuses

Come on in
I’ve gotta tell you what a state I’m in
I’ve gotta tell you in my loudest tones
I started looking for a warning sign

When the truth is, I miss you
Yeah the truth is, that I miss you, so

A warning sign
You came back to haunt me and I realized
That you were an island and I passed you by
And you were an island to discover

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All you need is love

I watched Across the Universe, a musical peppered with over 30 Beatles’ numbers, last night and I loved the movie!

It might just be because I can be a sappy romantic sometimes and this movie certainly appeals to that part of me, but I also thought the movie was very well directed (by Julie Taymore, who also directed Frida) and had some really awesomely picturised song sequences. (My favourite was “Revolution.”)

The movie is set in the 60s and uses the riots, Vietnam, Princeton, New York and Liverpool as its set.

The actors are surprisingly good singers, and my favourites would be T.V. Caprio singing “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” and any of Dana Fuchs’ performances.

Joe Cocker, Bono and Eddie Izzard make cameos in the movie too. Joe Cocker’s rendition of “Come Together” is pretty good but not much of a departure from the Beatles’ version. Bono singing “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” over the end credits as well as “I Am the Walrus” in the movie isn’t much to write about. I’m beginning to get tired of Bono’s cookie cutter vocals.

Most of the cast don’t have much acting background but do an pretty decent job with a couple of wooden performances here and there. Evan Rachel Wood (who was the lead in Thirteen) does a great job here and I quite liked her voice too.

So if you’re a Beatles’ fan, like musicals, and can stand a bit of mush, you will love this movie. Oh yes, if you’re a fan of the 60s, that’s a bonus!

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Why I won’t be buying anything from U2 anymore

Because they have a git of a manager who thinks consumers all steal his stuff and wants to restrict our rights to enrich him and his buddies in the recording industry.

Read his speech.

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The Blue Link Road up a Flagpole

Like most people that spend a lot of time on the internet, I’m guilty of following the “Blue Link Road.”

Today while actually trying to find some good WordPress themes, I came across this video on a blog called Ninja Monkeys!

Not only did I discover a new social-networky video sharing site, but I also discovered some new music. I am now officially addicted to Harvey Danger!

And here’s the really cool thing about Harvey Danger, they’re offering their latest album as free download on their website!

Yippie! Added to my torrents, hopefully I’ll have a lot of new music to listen to tomorrow!

Oh yeah, the video. It’s a lip-dubbed video by a bunch of people in an office. And it’s gotten so popular on the internet, it’s now the number 1 result on Google for “lip dub!” Don’t miss the really cute (hot?) woman that starts the video off… 😉

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Great Online Music service!

I love having my music as mp3s to play on my computer and not so long ago used to spend a lot of my time on Kazaa or various other p2p apps downloading music illegally. When I began to hear of legal music download services, I decided that it seemed the right way to go.

I spent a lot of time reading up and finally decided that iTunes was the music service I should use. Well, it’s a few months later, and I’m wondering why people have raved about iTunes. Undoubtedly it is the best of the paid legal music services in the US. Nevertheless it’s still tied down by the music industry’s stupidity. All files you download are protected and can only be played on the iTunes player or on your iPod. I don’t own an iPod or any other mp3 player and don’t plan to in the future either, (Just too expensive for me) and I don’t particularly like the iTunes player or interface. So that’s two reasons why iTunes doesn’t work for me.

You could say those are mere quibbles. Possibly. So then here’s the clincher. iTunes refuses to burn CDs on my computer. I have no idea why and the error message quite helpully says “Unknown error.” I can’t seem to find anyone who is having a similar problem with iTunes even after myriad Google searches. So it’s just one of those mysterious voodoo errors I’m stuck with, (and no I can’t buy a new computer and/or CD burner either!)

So just when I thought I was done with online music services for the nonce, someone points out AllOfMP3 to me. Almost any artist you want (even the Beatles and Michael Jackson) available at any bitrate you want, upto CD quality music. On the fly encoding with whichever encoder you choose, MP3, Ogg, WMA or lossless encoding formats. Price? As cheap as $0.01 per MB downloaded and no membership fees! Holy Cow!! I just couldn’t believe this is legal!

But, apparently, it is! As is explained at that link, allfomp3 is situated in Russia and according to Russian law, all digital IP rights rest with a single entity called ROMS (link to English version of site) and ROMS pays out the licensing fees to the artists/owners. So apparently anyone can offer music/content downloads online as long as they pay ROMS for it. I’m still confused as to how this works, but I assume the dollar to ruble conversion rate also plays a role in keeping prices low.

It gets better, AllofMP3 has a client called the AllofMP3 Explorer (thank Microsoft for that ubiquitous Explorer suffix) which when you have it running on your computer will automatically download your purchased music for you. You will still need to find the music using your browser and the web interface, but nothing more after that. The Explorer will start downloading the files as soon as they have been encoded and made available.

Still doesn’t sound good? Just registering on the site (for free) gives you access to all of their music as 24kbps MP3s. These are for previewing purposes, so you can actually listen to entire songs/albums to see if you’d like them before you buy them. You can also download an mru of an album to load as a playlist in winamp/[insert media player of your choice here] which will stream the mp3s for you!

Ok, a little exploration and you will be able to figure out whether you like it or not. I know I do. I’m busy purchasing a lot of music from there already. I’m just worried the RIAA (or whoever are the current bad guys) will discover this loophole in Russian copyright laws and lobby for it to be closed or made illegal for download in the US, so that they can all pay themselves hefty bonuses once more.