Monday, April 26, 2010

Music Download Sites - What Makes a Site Legal Or Illegal?

Hey everyone,

I just wanted to share with you a recent article I wrote about the legality of music download sites that is now published on http://www.ezinearticles.com/.

As an artist myself, I am frustrated with the illegal methods of downloading music which are still around but I tell myself if people don't know what makes a site legal or illegal, it's not their fault for using them so might as well put some information out there to educate users who are interested. Plus it helps me justify being upset a little since aside from my homepage which only compares the top legal music download sites, I'm getting a new article out there available to anyone interested in doing the right thing ... so now you know :)

The article takes a look at how music download sites started and got popular, what makes a site legal or illegal and what to look out for.

Check it out!

EzineArtciles - Music Download Sites - What Makes a Site Legal or Illegal

Please feel free to rate the article, pass it around, tweet it, all of the above. I'll try and put more of these together throughout the year but will get back to focusing on some music oriented posts which reminds me.

Another quick reminder, Blogger is taking out FTP uploading so I will be changing up the blog in the new upcoming month to Wordpress so to all subscirbers, you will have to re-subscribe. The "Blog" link through the homepage (www.comparemusicdownloadsites.com) will point to the new blog when it's up and running.

Thanks guys, enjoy the article and I'll hit you up with more music and music news soon!

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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Songs to Discover - Defying Gravity - Glee

Hey everyone,

First thing's first. I apologize. I took a step away from the song discovery theme which I've been getting some great feedback from only as "Blogger" seems to be doing a switch and will no longer allow FTP upload so we are thinking of switching everything to Wordpress. I'll keep you posted on that one. For now, I couldn't hold off on showing you a little something.

I don't watch the show but have a close friend who's a huge fan of "Glee" and knows I'm big into music so has always tried getting me to give it a shot. I just don't want to get addicted to another television show.

That said, this friend of mine sat me down in front of YouTube recently and said, dude, give this a listen ...




This is the first broadway type song I'm sharing with you because after a listen, there was just something with the song that really hit me that I haven't felt too often with this style of music.

First impression, when I heard that chorus that first time, the melody was just so strong. It felt unexpected and not predictable especially with the much more broadway feel to the verses.

My Interpretation

Well, it's a packed 2 minutes of what feels like a straight forward theme but I love the simplicity of the lyrics that were able to bring such a positive and important message across with ease. Don't be scared, take that leap towards whatever it is you're gunning for, don't let others stop you or take you down, you know, all that usual stuff. I've heard a lot of songs with the same theme but this one flows so well and just has the perfect musical and melodic accompaniment to pull it off.

I personally love it and hit repeat a good +10 times that same day it was shown to me. I hope you take a second, give it a listen, and enjoy it even half as much as I did.

As mentioned above, we may move everything to Wordpress so stay tuned since after May 1st, they are stopping this FTP upload bit that is very convenient so to all our subscribers, put a little mark in the calendar cause you may have to re-subscribe once the new set up is done.

Till then, enjoy the tune and I'll talk to you guys soon with some more little musical gems and other great music download sites news of course!

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Saturday, April 17, 2010

Poker Face - Chris Daughtry Acoustic Cover

Hey everyone,

Recently I wrote up a post about a well written song being great when stripped down to the bare minimum.

I found another great example I wanted to share with you guys of Chris Daughtry covering Lady Gaga's "Poker Face" on a radio show. Just him and an acoustic guitar playing a fantastic song:


The guy has a great voice, fine, but the point is to show that a well written song will sound fantastic even when you take away all the bells and whistles a producer added on top of the song to make it commercially accepteable and in the style of whichever artist is putting the song on their album.

Enjoy the clip, it's a great performance and an amazing song.

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Monday, April 12, 2010

Concert Review - Nickelback in Montreal April 9th 2010

So I was at the Bell Center in Montreal for the Nickelback concert on April 9th, 2010 and what a show it was. Talk about a line up:

- Sick Puppies
- Shinedown
- Breaking Benjamin
- Nickelback

One of the problems with the show was that it started way too early though with 4 bands, I guess it would have been hard to put it on any other way.

Sick Puppies was on first and they started at roughly 6:15 PM which has to be the earliest I've ever seen a band play at the Bell Center. They started strong with "War" and as usual put on a fantastic show. The only negative is that 4 songs later, they were off the stage. Talk about a short set ...

Shinedown came on and I was really excited as they are one of my favorite bands. They played a good 30 minute set full of the radio hits and a few off their new album which rocked. Best part of it was the acoustic version of "Simple Man" mid way showing off the singer's incredible voice. He impressed me as a front man and did try to get the crowd going but I was personally embarassed at how relaxed the crowd was during the set. I understand most came for the headliner but man, you're at a rock show. It's ok to get into the opening bands!

Breaking Benjamin was next playing a good 30-40 minute set again with all the radio hits and mixing it up with a few songs from each album. Same problem with the crowd though. I don't know if technology is hurting concert goers where they just text and play games while waiting for the only band they paid the ticket for but man, once again, I bowed my head down in shame looking at the crowd response to such a great live band.

The sound overall for the openers was to be desired but the same goes for a lot of opening acts. They won't get the same juice from the PA as the headliners so they are quite limited, let's not even talk about the 10% of lighting they get next to headliners.

Nickelback was next and from the start, the sound was amazing, pyro was going off everywhere, light show was half descent, you felt the rock show started after that. The crowd was 100% behind Chad's every word and singing along all night.

They must be the tightest band I've ever seen live. I'd be impressed if you could point out a mistake musically or vocally. They are all just spot on. Incredible. I was impressed by the small amount of sequences used also. Usually, you have rock bands go on and you hear 12 violins, back vocals, and hundred of sounds in the back to fill it up but they were very transparent with Nickelback to the point where in some songs, I couldn't guarantee that they used any at all.

All the radio hits were played and as they've been around for a little time and have a few hit albums out, hits pretty much made up their entire 2 hour set. Chad did a great job of interacting with the crowd and the show was built up to be very fun and entertaining.

There was a drum solo 3 quarters in. Now he may be a very tight drummer but I was a little dissapointed with the drum solo. A lot of it was rythm patterns as opposed to showing off and doing something impressive to the drummers in the room. Like most drum solos, people just went crazy anyways anytime there was double bass and a lot of noise regardless if it was at some of the simpler parts during the solo. I give it a 6/10 from all drum solos I've seen live. Far from the worst but no where near a top 10 drum solo.

Overall, the show was awesome and I recommend checking Nickelback out any time they are in your area and headlining. Easily the tightest band I've seen live and one of the best vocals too. I know people like to give them a hard time but if you can't appreciate a Nickelback show, you're just being ignorant cause it's really hard to say it was anything but a great rock show. Good job guys! See you at the next one.

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Sunday, April 4, 2010

What Ever Happened To Good Lyrics? Jason Derulo Lyrics Are Horrid

So the radio was on in the car and doesn't Jason Derulo's new single come on, "In My Head". Aside from having the beginning of the chorus identical to Lady Gaga's song (I'll keep that for another post), my first impression was that the song is insanely catchy but holy crap, who wrote the lyrics and are they serious?

What ever happened to lyrics that mean something? I get that it's the pop style and the idea is to pump these songs out ready to play at clubs so you throw in "girl", "baby", "dance floor" and all of the cliche terms you can but I at least feel better putting it out there that lyrics to these songs are getting worse and worse.

You be the judge for yourself. Here's a lyric video to the new single from Jason Derulo:





Are you done reading the lyrics? Is this serious?

I don't want to take away too much from the song cause indeed, it's insanely catchy and at least in my area, I wouldn't be surprise if it hits #1 soon enough. Maybe I'm jeleous that artists are almost "getting away with it". They water down songs so much and now even slacking on lyrics.

So I guess this post is to throw it out there that while you may find these songs extremely catchy, don't let it make you think this is great songwriting as a whole. It's like the quicky of songs. In and out, throw all the moves that work and just have a bunch in the pipeline to keep feeding people. I think music lovers are smarter than that and hope they can notice bad lyrics when they hear it but puting up a post while at least make me sleep easier at night.

Damn it's catchy though and serves its purpose well, just harder to respect lyric wise.

Side note, if you are looking for legal ways to download the top music hits around, be sure to check out our main page where we review the best music download sites on the net.

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Thursday, March 25, 2010

A Good Song is a Good Song - Rihanna Covers

I'm a songwriter with songs written having been in rotation on MuchLOUD and even top 10 on radio stations around my area. I think this is the first time I pass a link in a blog about my band but I'm the singer and lead songwriter of Play The Angel by the way - http://www.playtheangel.com/. It's only when I started getting really into writing songs that I started noticing the beauty in a lot of other songs around me.

When I'm in a car with someone else driving somewhere and a pop song comes on produced as hip hop or any other genre, sometimes I'll say out loud, "Dam, that's an amazing song". I'm a rocker so no one gets it and some of my friends even give me a weird look but what I mean is that there's a reason the song is being played on radio that much and built up to be an amazing success. Here's the reason:

A great song is a great song!

All these hip hop songs or super pop songs like Britney Spears or Rihanna, these songs made it to be such successes cause they are insanely well written songs. When you break it down to an acoustic version in your head, or if someone plays you a cover just voice / piano or voice / acoustic guitar, the songs are absolutely amazing. This is why a producer can take that version from these great songwriters and producing them to being these hip hop or very pop songs and they are insanely catchy. It's not the "yeah yeah's" in the back they add (though that does give an element), it's cause the song is just a great song to begin with. It's almost hard to mess it up at that point ...

Here are 2 quick examples of Rihanna songs that are amazing when broken down to their original state so hopefully the rockers out there like me can break out of that shell and start giving credit where credit is due to these great song writers. I'm not talking about Britney and Rihanna, I'm talking about the song writers who wrote their songs. Please don't get these mixed up, but start appreciating good song writing no matter what the genre they are produced in dammit!

Enjoy!

Rihanna's Disturbia - Acoustic Cover




Rihanna's Umbrella - Acoustic Cover


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Thursday, March 18, 2010

Funny Music Video - Regular Everday Normal Guy

I love any music that makes me feel something. If I were to be stuck on a desert island for the rest of my life with a small bank of songs to be my only entertainment, I'd try to spread it out to have music covering positive topics, serious ones, and anything with down right incredible lyrics and / or melodies but would probably throw one or two in that are just fun, or even, rediculously funny to cheer me up. Well ... This funny music video would have a good chance of being one of the only "funny" songs I'd bring with me:


The funny music video / song is called "Regular Everyday Normal Guy" by Jon Lajoie. I'm proud to say he's from my home town of Montreal, Canada. I don't know him personally but the funny music video was shown to me a while back by a buddy who said I had to check out this Montreal guy. This was when the video had maybe a few thousand plays. He must be doing it right cause he has well over 14,000,000 plays right now and counting. If ever he's reading this, Congrats!

He has loads of other funny music videos so if you like what he does, check him out through YouTube or go visit his website. You will not be dissapointed:

www.jonlajoie.com

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Thursday, March 11, 2010

The Muse in Montreal was amazing!

Hey guys,

So last night, the Muse was in town. Some buddies and I went to go check out the show. I've been looking forward to it for quite some time, especially after seeing their live DVD:


So we go to the show and catch the opener (Silversun Pickup) who rocked it out. They had a few hits going so it was nice to recognize a few songs. Always a plus ...

The Muse gets on stage, each of the three members on their own seperate platform and up maybe 20 feet from teh actual stage with columns of lights above and below them displaying incredible visual effects while in sync to the music of course. If it's not enough, towards the middle of the set, they had what felt like hundreds of laser effects going nuts which really kicked it up a notch. Let's face it, a live show, you have 3 guys on a stage, $500,000 worth of lights and lasers surely makes you seem larger than life. Helium filled balloons with eyeball designs fall from the cieling at another point, 2 encores later finishing off the show with Nights of Sydonia and everyone in the packed Bell Center was on their feet and felt like they had drank a few red bulls.

Overall, I have to say the concert was an easy 9 / 10, probably top 5 in my life. It helps when you know all the songs but these guys are just too good. Vocals are spot on, music incredible, and the lead singer has too much talent for one musician, it's almost sickening.

For any music lover, going to see them perform live is an aboluste must. If they are in your town, go check it out. You won't regret!

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Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Songs to Discover : The Fray - You Found Me

Songs to Discover

The Fray - You Found Me

Getting back to a serious note with the "Songs to Discover", for this week, I wanted to share with you a song with very strong lyrics and great melodies. This week goes to The Fray's You Found Me.

This is the first time I talk about a song that did hit radio but it's so good that if you've never heard it before, but heard a few times and didn't know who it was, I felt it was completely worth sharing.

Originally titled "Amistad" back in 2007, You Found Me went on to seling over 2,000,000 music downloads, taking the 13th spot on the Hot 100 Songs of 2009 list, and 36th on Billboard's Best Adult Pop SOngs of the Decade. Pretty impressive but when you take a listen to the song, any music lover who appreciates a strong and emtional vocal performance, meaningful lyrics, and a catchy melody would rush to hit repeat.

My Interpretation

For me, the song is of someone who lost his faith in God after stepping back and taking a look at how much crap there is in the world. None of his prayers have been answered so he figures there is no God, or if there is one, maybe he forgot about us. The character bumps in to God on a street corner and asks where He's been, and letting all of his thoughts and anger out saying how it's too late now. He lost his faith already and now he shows up ... what timing.

Take a listen to the lyrics yourself. They are beautiful and the kind that get you into the story and thinking from the first few lines. Fantastic job The Fray!

If you've never heard the song before, take 4 minutes of your life, hit play on the YouTube video above and enjoy!



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Sunday, February 28, 2010

Vancouver Olympics Nickelback Rocked It

Hey Everyone,

Not sure how many caught the closing ceremonies of this year's 2010 Vancouver Olympics but the last 30 minutes or so was a concert with a few major acts. I hope my memory gets them all in the right order ...

- Nickelback
- Avril Lavign
- Alanis Morissette
- Simple Plan
- Hedley
- Marie Mai
- K-Os

There was one big problem with the line up in my opinion and it was that they shoved Nickelback first. Now I know they are the band people love to hate but I will still share my musical taste and personal opinion with you (as always). Nickelback rocks. I'm now an even a bigger fan. Chad can sing like a machine. Every live concert I've seen and television clip has him singing like the record and on pitch at all times, and the band is tight as hell. Tonight was just adding to the list of their practically perfect performances.

Now I know that they had the opening advantage where as the sound was probably set up just right and the following acts had to deal with on the fly adjustments, but still, they are the type of band that even a soundman out of college could make sound good as everything and ever member individually rocks. You'd have to botch your job up pretty good to make them look bad. Plus you had their usual pyro with things blowing up everywhere. What a hell of a kick start.

It was followed by Avril lavign who I think stayed within a 2 foot radious at all times. Come on Avril. Move a little. Now I went to go see her in Montreal a littleo ver a year ago and remember being very dissapointed. Seeing her tonight standing like a pogo stick didn't help. Going after the tightest live band and a solid singer like Chad didn't help her cause either. She did well, but she should have gone earlier in the line up.

Alanis was up next. Great vocals. I'm a big fan of Jagged Little Pill but she sang something newer. Great song but which it was some of the older music.

Simple Plan sounded like they had a bigger french accent than usual and the sound wasn't incredible for them so it kind of hurt their performance a little, but catchy song, still very solid.

Hedley ... I'm also a big fan. Saw these guys at Metropolis in Montreal and I was blown away by the singer from stage performance to vocal performance. The olympic closing ceremonies did not give the band justice to me. I know they can rock a stage. Felt like something was missing but still a very good performance. My second favorite of the evening.

For Marie Mai. I'm a little bias as my band is signed to the same publishing company and we're all very big fans of her music but as usual, she rocked it out. Her latest CD is amazing overall. I'm usually not a big fan of french artists (though I'm from Montreal myself), but she is one of the only ones that I could listen to over and over again, and who I really enjoy watching live. Great energy. Awesome vocals.

K-Os didn't do it for me. I didn't see it as a closing act. It felt like the order was all wrong for the evening. As I said and the post title suggests, Nickelback by far was the tightest and most impressive act of the evening. They should have closed off the ceremonies and it would have all made a little more sense to me. Aside frome that, it was entertaining, kept me wanting to see who was up next, and the artist selection prooved to be interesting and easily enjoyable.

Good job Vancouver.

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Friday, February 26, 2010

iTunes Sells 10 Billion Songs

What a milestone ...

We want to send out our congrats to iTunes, selling it's 10 billionth song download on Wednesday (February 24, 2010). Got to figure, they only started their music download service in 2003.

For anyone curious, the actual song downloaded was Johnny Cash's "Guess Things Happen That Way" by 71 year old Louie Sulcer from Woodstock. To mark the event and as a special bonus to Louie for helping crack the 11 digit total download mark, he received a $10,000 gift card. Not so bad though anyone doing the math could get a quick glimpse that at $1 a download (and now up to $1.29), even if the artist gets a good chunk, iTunes probably has very deep pockets and couldn't care less about $10,000 and the publicity over the achievement and gesture sure brought them a heck of a lot of positive press worth many times that.

Got to say, good job to iTunes for keeping legal music downloads alive and well. Just goes to show not everyone is downloading music for free. If you're reading this and still using torrents or another method of stealing music, quit it. Artists need to get paid for their work like you need to get paid for going in to the office or anything else. No one would ask you to work for free or make a product to simply give it away.

If you are interested in legal music downloads, check out our site where we compare only the best music download sites out there, reviewing and rating each. We even have an iTunes Review for those interested.

Keep up the good work iTunes!

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Monday, February 22, 2010

Songs to Discover : Paramore - Decoy

Songs to Discover

Paramore - Decoy


Last week's "Songs to Discover" was Missy Higgins, "Where I Stood" which is probably one of my favorite songs of all time from a song writting prespective. This week, I wanted to spread the variety and genre a little to one of my favorite feel good songs, more from a music a driving perspective than a lyrical one. The type that you are waiting for at a concert that can get the place moving and you'd want to learn on guitar just cause it's a catchy riff. This week's blog is dedicated to Paramore's "Decoy".

For starters, I'm a huge fan of the band. I paid $100 to see them open for No Doubt in Montreal where they played a 25 minute set and I felt it was worth it. It's too bad I wasn't into No Doubt cause they played for what felt like hours. I don't know, Gwen wasn't doing it for me that evening. Everything felt too routine. It's fine if it is, but don't make it seem like it. Now back to Paramore.

The girl can sing and live has the cardio of a marathon running which really makes a difference in their live performance. Can't stand the pogo stick rock bands that come on and seem to have an invisible cage around them stopping any type of stage performance.

"Decoy" is off of their very successful "Riot" album but only on certain extended versions of it. For some reason, I couldn't find it through Amazon so I included the regular "Riot" album with samples at the bottom of this post as the whole album is awesome (stay tuned for a review). There are so many on there that I'd like to mention but keeping with the theme of songs to discover, "Decoy" was the non radio hit that really got me after a listen and had me looping it for a while.

I'd usually go into the "My Interpretation" section about here but honestly, I don't find it very deep lyrically especially next to some of the past "Songs to Discover". It has a great melody, guitar riff, and overall production with a catchiness factor through the roof.

I'll go back to a song with deeper lyrical meaning for the next entry I promise but sometimes, you need that song to get the blood flowing without the brain thinking. There is quite a good batch out there that aren't too well known that I'll be throwing in from time to time. For now, relax a little, clear your thoughts, don't think too hard on this one and just let the music do the talking.

Enjoy!




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Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Songs to Discover : Missy Higgins - Where I Stood

Songs to Discover

Missy Higgins - Where I Stood


You guys seem to be enjoying the "Songs to Discover" thing so I'll keep going on it. This blog is going to Missy Higgins' "Where I Stood", one of the strongest songs lyrically I've come across that accomplishes bringing out an incredible amount of emotion through such simple text.

While finding lyric version of the song on YouTube for you guys, I also landed on the following live version. Just when I thought I couldn't love this song any more and then an incredible live performance. Writting this blog brought me another favorite live clip from YouTube so thanks guys for reading these and letting me discover more because of them along the way:

Listening to the album version first may make you appreciate the live version a little more actually but you owe it to yourself to check both out.

I honestly first heard this song when I walked into a room and someone was watching "Smallville" at my place. There was a scene going on with this song playing in the background. Now I don't particularly like sitting in front of the television but I heard a part of this song, stopped in my footsteps, and sat in front to listen and watch the scene. Incredible song.

This is another song that around my area never really hit radio very much but holy crap, such a powerful song. The vocal performance on the album version is intense. I don't think you could pin point even a word of it that isn't perfect vocally. The production of it is simple and a perfect fit as well.

My Interpretation

"Where I Stood" is one of those songs that are an easy listen. So strong lyrically, but so simple that you don't have to put a puzzle together. In a first listen, even tuning in and out of the song, you'll still understand it quite well and catching a few key lines will make you want to re-listen to catch the rest.

As always, lyrics are very open to interpretation so I simply share what I hear. I'll quit saying this line after a few more posts :)

This song is of a woman in a heavy relationship with someone she loves. Though she loves him, she has to let him go cause she knows deep down it's not right and they aren't right for each other which takes more guts and a very strong person as oppossed to someone who would have been in the same situation and perhaps drag it out, or even stick around for the conviniance of it all.

In the song, she goes through with the break up which is hard on both of them. Even he is telling her to stay which doesn't make things easier obviously, but she trusts herself enough to still go through with it. You can see she is doing it for the right reasons though as she does give many compliments to the relationship, examples of how she's learned from it, and as the love was genuine, even says that she'll always be close by if ever he needs anything.

The strongest lines are in the chorus though:

'Cos I dont know who I am, who I am without you
All I know is that I should
And I don't know if I could stand another hand upon you
All I know is that I should
'Cos she will love you more than I could
She who dares to stand where I stood

Feel free to share your thoughts on the song but either way take a listen. You owe it to yourself to hear this one as a music lover, songwriter, singer, anyone really.

Here are some samples from the entire CD which hold other great songs, but none topping "Where I Stood".

Enjoy!


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Friday, February 12, 2010

Songs to Discover : Shinedown - What a Shame

Songs to Discover

Shinedown - What a Shame


Keeping on with the "Songs to Discover", this blog is dedicated to one of my favorite artists, Shinedown, and to my favorite "underground" song of theirs; What a Shame.

First off, to me, the singer (Brent Smith) has one of the best modern rock vocals out there. The vocal performances in general on each of their albums is amazing. He has an insane range staying with his full voice (not falsetto), really pushing it to the max on the album tracks, and you get a good idea of it with this song.

Shinedown has quite a few hits. The weren't the biggest band around in my area but I have always been a fan ever since one of their first hits here, "45". The track I'm showing you guys today though is off of their more recent "Sound of Madness" album which is starting to have a few radio singles from but this song is not one of them yet, at least here.

My Interpretation

"What a Shame" has a great build up and story line lyrically. To each their own interpretation but for me, I see it as someone who has lost a friend who's relatively close. As they were good friends, the character knew him very well and saw sides of him others may not have seen where as he was a loving and caring soul but had his troubles in life as in general, things along the way, or people along the way made it hard for him and in turn, made him seem like bitter person around others who didn't know him as well. After this person passed away, the character in the song is singing his letter to God, trying to convince him that regardless what a lot of others may have seen, this was a good man so please "give this man his wings" ... let him go to heaven.

You may disagree. Feel free to share your thoughts or at the least, take a listen to the song. If you like rock in general, I'd be surprised after a few listens that you don't enjoy this one. Either way, you can check out samples below of all their songs from their latest album "Sound of Madness" which is overall a great album. Keep an eye for an upcoming review on it.

For now, take in the samples and take in the song. It's a great one to discover if you've never heard it before.

Enjoy!



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Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Songs to Discover : Flyleaf - Circles

Songs to Discover

Flyleaf - Circles


Flyleaf had a few hit songs and music videos that got some airplay in the last few years but this one was not one of them (yet).

After listening to their new album Memento Mori which is overall a pretty descent album (I'll keep my full comments for an eventual full review of the album), this song in particular, Circles, was the one that I was repeating in my car quite a few times and still am loving it every time it plays.

The story makes for a great build up, the emotion in the vocal take, and the killer bridge both musicially and lyrically towards the end tops it off making this a simply great song to discover that I wanted to share with you guys.

A full review will be coming for this and many other albums so subscribe to our blog, follow us on twitter, and all that good stuff. For now, here are music samples of all the songs off of Memento.

Enjoy!



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Sunday, February 7, 2010

YouTube Vevo Music Videos Inflate Plays

YouTube Vevo Music Videos Inflate Plays



This is not a fact, I am simply sharing my observation with you ...

I landed on the above music video from Bullet For My Valentine which plays through Vevo on YouTube. Side note, the song didn't really hit radio where I live but I absolutely love this song and the band. Lyrics are a little weaker than the music I find, but overall very rocking. Now back to the reason for the post.

The video today showed over 20,000,000 views with roughly 1,100 star ratings. That means only 1 rating came for every roughly 18,000 views. I found that rediculously low so I went to compare with the first video that popped in my head that I knew wouldn't be under Vevo and would probably have some what 'honest' stats:


The above video is of a song I discovered last year and couldn't stop listening to. I even wrote a whole blog on these guys - People in Planes.

In any case, today the music video has roughly only 48,000 views and 218 ratings meaning 1 rating for every 220 views! Compared to 1 in 18,000, talk about a difference.

All that to say, with this quick observation along with a few others I've made of music videos not on Vevo, I am personally under the assumption that most videos under Vevo ('major' acts) have inflated plays / views which in turn produces these low rating to view ratios. Even if we consider people can view Vevo videos at http://www.vevo.com/ now, still, the video in my example with 20 million views was favorited only 120 times at Vevo with a single page of comments so I don't see that angle accounting for millions of plays.

You make your own conclusion but I found it interesting. At the same time I understand for any music label to want to give the impression of having their new music videos played millions of times even if it's only a front as it's more impressive to users than an honest 48,000 plays right.

Nothing new here though, just another example that it's all for show. Marketing wise, I agree with them. Why do you think commercials still use the '2,000,000 satisfied customers to date!' type of lines? I guess if people feel millions before them thought a product was worth spending money on, must mean it's good and you wouldn't be a crazy person if you did too? As a consumer though, hearing these types of lines makes me do a little more research before jumping in.

I put this blog together to simply put out a possibility so that if any of you judge a song even slightly before listening to it by looking at stats, quit it! If you have to, listen to the song first, see what you think about it, then take a look at the plays out of curiosity so it won't influence you before even taking an ear to something. Be open to new music regardless if the band is backed by a huge record company that has bots inflating plays or just a starter band as you may pass up discovering those hundreds and thousands of really rocking smaller bands with only 10,000 views but some of the greatest music you'll ever hear.

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Thursday, February 4, 2010

Beyonce Grammy Performance 2010

Beyonce Grammy Performance 2010


Thinking back at the Grammy awards this year, there were so many that were singing off key and just didn't grab my attention so I felt for the few that did do an awesome job, why not show some support and share with you their great performances.

Earlier this week, I posted up a blog on Lady Gaga and Elton John's Grammy Performance which was easily the best of the evening so today, a look at Beyonce's grammy performance.

Things have really kicked up a notch as far as entertainment these past few years with larger set ups, bigger stages, and more back up dancers / singers. Beyonce made great use of all of it this year putting on a killer performance.

"Halo" is a great song to begin with but they made it interesting from the start with an awesome solo piano part, the horn and much more orchestral section right after, continuous alterations and dynamics throughout, then cutting into Alanis Mroissette's "You Oughta Know", and back to finish "Halo".

Another impressive part was the stage show she gave, running around like crazy, moving like an animal and singing in key without giving us the feeling at any point of being out of breathe or it being hard for her.

Beyonce, just want to say bravo! It's too bad we don't have more "real" entertainers around at shows like these that can pull off every angle of a performance as well as she did.

To everyone else, practice more. You're up against some serious competition so no singing off key dammit and give us a show will you. Don't be lazy.

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Monday, February 1, 2010

Lady Gage and Elton John Best Grammy Performance

Lada Gaga and Elton John Best Grammy Performance


So I took a look at all of the grammy performances. I may comment on a few but I wanted to at least put this blog together dedicated to the best musical performance of the night in my opinion. Lady Gage and Elton John. Absolutely amazing.

We may think Lada Gaga tries a little too hard at times with her over the top outfits but put that aside for a second. This girl can sing and entertain and you're either a fool or have very particular taste if you disagree. She may not have the biggest or best voice even in comparison to the other perofmers that night, but at the least, man is she on and that's way more than I can say about Taylor Swift for example who took home quite a few awards but when it came time to perform, I practically changed the channel cause her singing was so off key. Given, Lady Gaga went on first so chances are the sound was set just right before the show started and then as it's live, you do the best you can so it's very possible Taylor Swift couldn't hear a thing she sang. Don't know, maybe she has hundreds of live clips where she is rocking it out and the music and vocals are on but I'm only going by that evening for this blog.

Ok, back to Lady Gaga. Even the stage set up, the narrator between her performace of the 2 songs, the dark look, double piano with arms coming out of it, the whole thing oozes entertainment and she sang very well, kicking off the show with one of the biggest songs of last year.

To top it, you have Elton John singing with her for the second half which holy crap, can this guy be any better vocally? Everytime I heard anything he did live, it could be an album take and would rock. Props to Elton John, it just goes to show how a pro who's been around does it and how he can put practically all the singers that night to shame pitch wise at least.

By far, this was my favorite musical performance of the evening.

Enjoy the clip!

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Monday, January 25, 2010

American Idol - Can You Dig It

American Idol - Can You Dig It


I wanted to share with you guys one of my favourite 'bad' auditions from a past season of American Idol.

Singer, dancer, musician Leroy Wells with his abundance of energy trying to convince the judges and guest judge Gene Simons to get him to Hollywood. Though the effort didn't pan out, he has to be one of the most entertaining characters I've ever seen on the show. I just wish they would make a reality show around this guy. I practically don't care what he'd be doing, as long as they let him pitch his talent to random people or execs, or just let him be himself in public with different challenges every week.

Leroy, screw American Idol. I haven't been that entertained from any other audition thus far. You rock!

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Monday, January 11, 2010

Simon Cowell Leaving Americal Idol for X Factor

Simon Cowell Leaving American Idol


After being part of America's most popular show, news hit that Simon Cowell has decided to leave American Idol after this season.

Simon Cowell was making a reported $36 million a year to be on American Idol and offered much more to stay but as the reason for leaving is to bring his own show over (The X Factor) which is already popular in Britan, chances are if it becomes a hit here, $36 million would be just a fraction of what he'll earn. Fox has already agreed to take the show on so expect a new talent show to keep track of soon.

The decision comes as a surprise to loads of fans, me included. After all, let's face it. Simon rocked and was the only honest judge who maintained focus, judging the performance and singing of each contestant that stepped on stage honestly, and not deviating his comments to other unecessary compliments to soften the blow. Yes, this is a Paula hit. No one cares about their nice shoes cause no one will pay to go see them walk around and sing off key all night. It's not helping anyone.

That said, the producers of Idol are faced with one heck of a dilemma. Not only did they loose Paula who even I enjoyed watching from time to time to see what would come out of her mouth next or see her slurring words, but now they are loosing the most popular and coolest judge ever. I would not want to be holding too many stocks in Idol after Simon leaves ...

So who would be a good replacement anyways? Personally, I'm finding it hard to think of Idol without him, but American Idol is such a machine. It is the reason behind the careers of some of the most successful artists of our generation. I'm sure they have a good team behind them that have a few candidates in mind, and probably the name and money to get anyone they want ... except for Simon it seems.

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Thursday, January 7, 2010

Mariah Carey Drunk Acceptance Speech

Drunk Mariah Carey - Highlights from her acceptance speech:

I had to share this one with you guys for anyone who hasn't seen it yet. What class. I couldn't stop laughing.

These were the highlights of Mariah Carey's acceptance speech for her award as "Breakthrough Actress" for her performance in "Precious" at the Palm Springs International Film Festival. As she's escorted to the stage, even before she could open her mouth, you could see the girl is drunk. It was the first time I was excited to hear what she had to say.

I don't blame her. These things are hours long and get boring. Even the edited versions you watch on TV can sometimes get lengthy. I for one would probably watch many more award shows from start to finish if I could expect a few drunks to give deep and intellectual speeches like Mariah.

Good job Mariah Carey. I wasn't a big fan before but I'm starting to like this one. Bottoms up!

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Monday, January 4, 2010

Compare Music Download Sites in 2010

Happy New Year everyone! Hope you had a great holiday season. Went by a little too fast as usual but what can you do.

We've been meaning to revamp the site and this year, I've decided to add it as part of a lengthy resolution list. I figure at least a few resolutions will stick and this one has been put off for a little while but I think it's time to take the site to a new level.

We want to work on putting together a new look for the site and in the process, adding a few new sections to help users. Some ideas are floating around for now (mobile phone music download service reviews, top portable music players, album reviews, ...) but we wanted to open the floor to your ideas so if there's something you wish you would see on the site, contests, free music, whatever, feel free to contact us, share your thoughts, suggestions, whatever you have and we'll try to work in as many positive ideas as we can. In the end, the goal of this site was to educate users on how and where to legally download music which I think we do pretty well so might as well kick it up a notch.

If all goes well, the site revamp will get started in a few months but never the less, it's never too early to get some juices flowing so send us an email, we want to hear from you!

Either way, be sure to subscribe to our blog if you haven't already as we will keep bringing you relevant and interesting music news, personal music picks, great music videos, and much more through this music blog.

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Saturday, December 5, 2009

Susan Boyle's Debut Album 'I Dreamed a Dream' Beats UK Sales Record

You might remember Susan Boyle from Britain's Got Talent even if you don't catch the show in your area only as they made such a huge deal about it across global media that you couldn't help but catch a glimpse of her performance which seemed to have knocked the socks off all of the judges. In case you missed it:

Her recently released debut album has gone to break the UK record for most units sold in it's first week with over 410,000 units!

I'm not sure what is more impressive. The number of units sold or how powerful reality TV shows are becoming making such an impact on what consumers are buying. It's far from the first reality TV success story making you wonder what's to come in another 10 years of show winners. Reality talent shows will run the charts and pretty much dictate what we're going to buy and what music we listen to. Come to think about it, I guess the best move for record labels would be to grab their top few potential artists, show them on a reality TV show, pay off whoever they need to and get their guys as far as possible, winning the competition, and then they're guaranteed record sales. It's not like they didn't use to pay off radio stations to get their songs played. Even if no one requested it, it was a sneaky but effective way as hearing the same song a few times will eventually have people singing it back. Same concept here. It's reality TV. People get attached to the characters and anyone on the show for 10 weeks will get a load of attention which will result in album sales afterwards. I think this could all just lead to pay for reality positioning if it hasn't already which is no fun to think about so I'll stop thinking about it.

In any case, back to Boyle. Good for her. She has a great voice and used the opportunity of being in TV to show her talent and in a sense get a huge short cut into the industry and now selling an insane amount of records. Maybe the whole thing makes me jeleous so I'll leave this post at that ... a record breaking contest winner sells a whole lot of records ... now you know.

For anyone interested:



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Saturday, November 28, 2009

UK Working on Reducing Illegal Music Downloads

Looks like the UK is working on reducing the amount of illegal music downloads in the country. The move will involve implementing technology to track illegal music downloaders, warning repeat offenders, and in drastic cases, disconnecting users completely with the help and cooperation of ISPs. Here's the full story:

Illegal downloaders will be disconnected - eventually - Article by Computing.co.uk

This is far from being a new concept as this has been discussed in many other countries, and many other times before. The problem lies with invading one's privacy and not respecting human rights since for all of this to work, monitoring of users internet habits and visited web pages would come into play. Is everyone comfortable knowing they are being monitored so closely, down to files they download and share with friends? France for instance has already made internet access a human right so not too sure how they will work around that one, or if this type of move will even be possible?

One number that shocked me in the article was claiming only 1 in 20 music downloads in UK were legal! I think everyone can at least agree something needs to be done about it. If we all enjoy music and our favorite artists, we need to support what they do. If everyone steals their music, how in the hell do you expect people to keep making records, have the money to back big scale touring, pretty much keep the music business going?

I'm not saying monitoring every every household computer's activity is the solution, but it is a solution and unfortunately, too many people are stealing music. If the numbers weren't so drastic, perhaps these types of measures would have never been discussed or brought to the table in the first place.

To sum it up, stop downloading music illegally! It's a point we push very hard at our site where we compare only reliable sites offering legal music downloads so if you want artists to keep creating music and coming to your town, putting on amazing live concerts, if you're still downloading off torrent sites or other illegal manners where artists are not compensated, check out these places to download music instead.

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Thursday, November 26, 2009

Rock Band Now Has 1000 Songs Available

You've played it before maybe at a friends house, or even seen it on your favorite television series at some point. Rock Band, probably one of the most addictive video games ever made, continuously added songs for the platform for the past two years and recently reached a new milestone totaling 1,000 available songs! For the music lovers out there that enjoy the occasional video game, this opens the door to hours upon hours of rocking out to your favorite tunes while getting a chance to discover some great music.

If that wasn't enough, the developers of Rock Band recently put out a 'Beatles' version of the game, letting you play along to all your favorites, and even released an upgraded "Rock Band 2" version.

The music keeps on coming so if you haven't checked out the game yet and are a music fan, this one will keep you glued to the television for some time. Figure if you're spending some time listening to music, might as well play along to it ...



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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

HMV Music Download Kiosk in Singapore

Music downloads have threatened physical CD sales and stores like HMV for a while now. A new HMV store in Singapore is trying something new though ...

They will have music download kiosks available for users to download their favorite songs right to their phones. Here's the full story:

Buy HMV Digital Downloads for a Song - Article by AsiaOne.

I think stores trying to diversify and 'get with the times' in a sense is great however there are a few negative points to consider with a music download kiosk.

First off, I don't see how they'll ever be able to match per song pricing of music download sites. It just doesn't make sense. The extra expense of having a kiosk in a physical building where you would have to compare renting the space for millions as oppossed to only website hosting costs will force them to jack up prices in comparison to music download services. This is what is expected as well according to the article.

Per song pricing is expecting to be anywhere between $0.80 per song up to $1.69 for the more popular titles and files will have certain DRM encryption, limiting their use and how many computer's they could be shared on at once. These files will also not be compatible with iPhones or iPods where as at Amazon MP3 or iTunes, songs are on a variable pricing model as well but from $0.69 to $1.29 and with little to no restrictions.

Perhaps the conveniance of being in a shopping mall and wanting a particular song on the spot can have some overlook the extra few cents and limitations but it's an overpriced product for now. Very happy they are working towards going digital but will have to find a way to do it and stay competitive with sites offering music downloads at such lower prices and no restrictions.

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Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Beatles - While My Guitar Gently Weeps - Cover on Ukulele

Hey guys,

I wanted to share an awesome YouTube video with you of a fantastic ukulele player doing an instrumental version of "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" by George Harrison / The Beatles:





I end up watching quite a few covers on YouTube randomly most of the time and most are less than impressive. This one was shown to me by a close friend who landed on it by accident and I guess was luckier with his wasted time than I have been in a while. It really struck a chord. Great version. I only wish the musician's name was easier to find as I'd love to share with you so if anyone knows, feel free to email us here at http://www.comparemusicdownloadsites.com/ and I'll edit this post to give the artist his well deserved credit.

Enjoy the video!

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Monday, November 23, 2009

Adam Lambert AMA Performance - The Male Britney

Alright, so everyone's talking about Adam Lambert's performance at the AMA's last night so I guess you can consider it a successful publicity stunt but I say "what the heck man". Here was an interview with Adam after the performance:





If Adam likes a guy's face in his crotch and another guy's tongue down his throat while he sings, fine. I can't really say much since if it was Britney Spears with another woman on stage, I may have had a smile on my face and consider it entertaining so fair is fair. If male on male is as popular to the general public I'm not convinced but I guess his marketing team figure the publicity he gets for thowing it in his act will pay off in the end.

I have a problem with the performance for completely different reasons. I was a fan of Adam when he was on American Idol. I thought the guy was a machine. He rarely ever sang a wrong note and was the ultimate rockstar. He always looked under control and confident when performing each and every night. Now, we don't hear from him in months, his big TV break and he sings off in loads of places, stumbles on stage, and in my opinion didn't have the same confidence going out there as he did on American Idol.

Either he was having a bad night, is not confident in singing his own material, or is trying to go out there and be someone he's completely not comfortable with (yet) which again comes down to showing a lack of confidence resulting in very poor singing for most, in Adam's case, a few off notes throughout.

That aside, I don't find the new song to be very good. It all reaks of fabrication. It's taking away from the art. You have an album saying "For Your Entertainment" so basically a big heads up he's ready to do anything for media coverage and get people talking. They choose to release it as a first single. His first performance has loads of stunts involved knowing the world will talk about it. It's all too fabricated.

A real rockstar doesn't say "hey, watch me, I'm going to do things that will make you guys talk about me". Usually, they do it either cause it's them all along, or at least do it without the big billboard and heads up to the world. He had his chance on American Idol to shock but instead, he was being himself and was amazing. The world loved him. Once the record label got their hands on him, they built a whole story and plan around it. He's not a rockstar, he's a popstar. Hopefully they won't ask him to jump and bark like a dog cause I'd bet he's ready to. After all, it would go with the whole "For Your Entertinament" theme and probably get him in the papers again.

I'm sure the songs will be catchy, he'll sell millions of records and be a big success but still lost a few points in my eyes from yesterday's performance. I would have much rathered an acoustic performance that showed off his insane vocal range and voice than seeing a male version of Britney who's media hungry and ready to do anything for people to talk about it. Looking forward to seeing how this plays out though and still looking forward to checking out the album.

Best of luck Adam. You sing like a freaken rockstar, hands down. Just wished you would have stuck to the rockstar path and not give in to being a male Britney. At least you chose to actually sing live though. I don't think I could have handled another lip sync performance yesterday night ...

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Monday, October 5, 2009

Warner Music Videos Back on YouTube

It's been a long 9 months without being able to find some of the greatest bands of all time on YouTube including Metallica, Muse, Nine Inch Nails, Marylin Manson, and so many others. This was all due to disputes between YouTube and Warner Music over money of course.

Early 2009, Warner took off their library of music videos from YouTube, unable to come to an agreement on how they would share income. This had YouTube constantly filtering and removing uploads involving the acts under Warner while leaving a lot of fans upset and out looking for other video alternatives to catch the latest releases and classics from their favorite bands.

Announced September 29th, the two seem to have come to an agreement. The videos from Warner Music's library will be returning to YouTube and Warner will be the one finding and selling advertisment on the videos instead of using Google ads like practially everyone else which is an interesting approach. Personally, I'm curious to see if the other major labels will be following in their footsteps in an attempt at having more control over their videos, and obtaining a larger piece of the pie as Warner is trying to do.

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Thursday, May 28, 2009

Green Day's New Album Not in Wal-Mart Due To Parental Advisory Sticker

So how's about this one. Walmart refuses to put Green Day's new album, 21st Century Breakdown, on their shelves due to the parental advisory sticker. Then you have Green Day sticking to their guns and unlike practically every other music group and artist, refuses to make a special edit for them.

Here's the full scoop:

You Won't Find Green Day's 21st Century Breakdown at Wal-Mart - Full article at MTV.com

Saying no to the biggest retailer of physical CD's in the US requires a hell of a marketing plan to compensate and seeing as this stunt put them in every newspaper, online magazine, and blog (even our music download sites blog), I guess it was actually a marketing genious who thought it up because they are getting press from avenues who would have never taken notice to the fantastic album.

That aside, opening weekend brought them 215,000 sold copies so it will be interesting to see how the numbers increase after all of this attention. Doesn't feel like they even needed an extra push really.

For Walmart, hard to say if this will hurt or help them since you have all the parents now convinced that they are looking out to keep 'filth' off of the shelves, but any real music lover couldn't possibly want to buy an edited version of an album. Music is created as a form of expression. How can you censor what you're really feeling? The message is no longer the real one. I'd hate to feel like every artist and music group out there is forced into modifying their message in any way after so much work is put into a music album just so it can be sold in it's true, original form.

Music downloads are gaining steam and perhaps stunts like this will push some music lovers into ways to download music instead.

This aside, the album is great and one of the upcoming projects of our music blog will be to have album reviews. Until then, the lowest price on the digital album could be found through Amazon MP3. Here's an album sample. Enjoy!





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Thursday, April 23, 2009

Was The Pirate Bay Trial Judge Bias

Last week, we had a post called File Sharing Service Owners Sentenced to Prison which had 4 men prosecuted and sentenced to 1 year in jail along with a fine totalling roughly $3.6 million for starting and operating a Swedish BitTorrent site, The Pirate Bay, which helped users find pirated software and files leading to illegal downloads, and so a copyright infringement towards the entertainment industry. Why people are not yet making the switch to legal music download services, I don't know. Here's the follow up.

The defence for the case is demanding a retrial saying the judge for the trial was bias as he is a participant in the Swedish Association of Copyright, along with a board member of the Swedish Association for the Protection of Copyright, and if that's not enough, a member of .SE which is the Internet Infrastructure Foundation. Talk about a conflict of interest.

Bias or not, illegal music downloads are way out of hand. I understand there needs to be an example made out of someone but it is still the user's fault in my opinion. You don't go suing a sports store because a customer bought a bat and broke into someone's home with it, you should go after the customer who decided to make an illegal action with something the sports store was offering.

In a way I'm hoping someone is made an example of to a certain extent perhaps with a warning to monitor operations and illegal music downloads going on with a file sharing software or BitTorrent site and being obliged to report such users who are taking advantage of these services in an illegal way, but I wouldn't be ready to send these guys to jail as even file sharing sites could have great use in legal ways to transfer free material without any copyright on it. Maybe start up bands look to put out free music for everyone to download. These sites can help them promote their material which they are giving out for free so why take them completely off the net?

It's a touchy subject, always was, but either way, to anyone who wants to download music, forget about file sharing and BitTorrent sites as the actions you are doing to get free copyrighted materials off of these sites is illegal. Find yourself a solid music download services and stick to it.

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iTunes Pass Benefits Who Really

iTunes is now offering a new music product - iTunes Pass. Think of it as a fan club membership you would be able to get for your favorite music group.

When they announced it late February, Depeche Mode was the only band available. For $18.99, you would get everything the band puts out on iTunes until June 16, 2009 which includes the new single, some promo materials (ex. remixes, videos, etc ...), and the Sounds of the Universe album when it's made available.

iTunes says the cost of the pass would always be less expensive than what you would get for it, but lately with their new pricing model that increased per-song prices by %30, I find it hard to believe any product they put out is in the best interest of the customer. Someone has done the math on this and you can bet it's going to bring iTunes another great source of revenue. Hopefully they will at least follow through and the pass will be a positive addition for all true fans out there that can't get enough of their favourite music group since, as a concept, I can see it as very attractive to both music groups and fans.

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Sunday, April 19, 2009

Jack Black Speaks Up on Piracy

This video went up a little while ago and I figured it was fitting to share due to all the recent progress going on in the fight against file sharing and piracy like the File Sharing Service Owners Sentenced to Prison, or the New Law in Sweden Against File Sharing.

Whether you're a fan of Jack Black or not, take a look:

Jack Black Speaks Up on Piracy



I think it's awesome another artist speaks up on piracy. When it comes down to it, though he still delivers it in a funny way, the message is right on. Artists work hard to create movies, music, and other forms of art. You wouldn't steal a CD from a store or movie from the shelves and using a file sharing site or program to pass on copyrighted material without compensating the artist is stealing. How are these artists going to get paid for their work if everyone takes what they want for free?

I read some comments about this that rock stars don't need the extra little bit of money they are loosing out on music downloads. Already, because someone has money doesn't make it any more justifiable to steal from them, but leaving the rich rock stars out of the equation, think of all the bands and artists starting out. They spend all their money to record an album and CD sales have dropped a huge amount due to illegal downloads. How can any new artists start a career if people steel from the little they could be making, and how can you expect these guys to go on and record a second album? How do they even measure if it was worth recording it in the first place? Where's the money come from to start touring, or promoting the album?

Quit stealing, use one of the legal music download sites mentioned on our main page. Read through the reviews and you'll see how reasonable being part of one of these services really is. I'm also speaking as a musician trying to get a career started as well so even if you don't listen to a guy like me, if you are one of those people using illegal means to get copyrighted material like movies and music, check out the video and at least admit to yourself your actions are illegal and you are stealing when you could maybe buy that same song for $0.69 or listen to as much legal music as you want for the cost of an album a month with one of the music subscription services we review.

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Friday, April 17, 2009

File Sharing Service Owners Sentenced to Prison

First Sweden passes a new music download law requiring ISP's to turn in user's IP address if they are suspected to download music illegally, now they are shutting down one of the biggest file sharing services. Another point for the good guys.

For those new the topic, file sharing services allow users to share any file they want across the net. This is a huge problem with music downloads as it makes copyrighted material accessible to anyone for free, by-passing compensation to the artist and bands working to record them, and ultimately making it easier to steal music online. Unfortunately, there was little to do against these sites but now Sweden courts have taken a huge step.

One of the biggest file sharing services, The Pirate Bay, went to court. The 4 men who started the site were prosecuted and were sentenced to 1 year in prison and fined a total of roughly $3.6 million in damages that they will have to pay to the entertainment companies. Here's the story:

File-Sharing Site Violated Copyright, Court Says - Article from the NY Times.

It's touchy as the ones who started the site were not really hosting any of the files, but did provide a service making it very easy for users to get their hands on stolen copyrighted material by making links to these files available.

Personally, I'm happy about the ruling as it's a nice wake up call if nothing else to users that what they are doing is wrong and if you want a song or album, you need to go the right way and use one of the legal music download sites out there, but at the same time, I feel it's really the users who should be to blame and not the site owners. As an example, sports stores sell baseball bats. If a customer buys one and smashes a car window, the store shouldn't go to court for selling the bat. The action the customer decided to take using the bat was illegal and is where the problem lies, in the same way if people use a service in an illegal way, then they are to blame.

This will be another one to keep an eye on and see if it changes anything but really, if people were using a file sharing site before, chances are they'll flock to another one but at least there's a chance it'll convert a few along the way to give a try to legal music download services instead.

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Ad Supported Music Download Site Spiral Frog Shuts Down

We got a lot of emails asking why we never reviewed the 'free' ad-supported music download site Spiral Frog. Our response was always that it seemed like a fragile approach and was lining itself up to making users unhappy. That's besides the fact that they went for deals with the major labels and only 2 of the 4 agreed. Never the less, they went on with a very aggressive marketing strategy for the music download service but in the end, they had to close up shop. The full story:

Ad-supported music download service SpiralFrog enters the dead pool - Article from Last 100.

I have a lot of respect for the guys at Spiral Frog who dove in and gave it a real shot. You don't know unless you try. The only way we'll evolve and get this music industry back on its feet is by people trying sometimes risky approaches that could pay off so hopefully we will see other legal music download sites in the near future with different creative approaches. Till then, I suggest we stick to the legal music services that have been there for years and who we can trust.

Be sure to check out our reviews on all the top legal music download services at our main site:

Compare Music Download Sites

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Thursday, April 16, 2009

Band Uses Twitter as a Close to Real-Time Broadcast of a Show

A band is making use of Twitter in a new way. They are setting up their CD release to be recorded, quickly mastered, and right away put up on the net and sharing links to the music downloads for each song as close to real-time as possible. Though there will be a delay between the time the song was played and is available, this is a good attempt at using Twitter as a close to live broadcast of a band's show. Here's the full story:

Tech-studded rock band Moonalice offers closest thing yet to live music on Twitter - Article from Venture Beat.

With so many platforms available for bands to promote their music, it's hard to find one to stick to and stay active with but Twitter has definitely created a buzz in the past weeks and months and is prooving once again that it is a fun networking site with many possibilities, now sharing music downloads and making them available practically in real-time.

On that note, you can visit our Twitter page at www.twitter.com/TopMusicSites if you are already part of the networking community. If not, what are you waiting for!

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Wednesday, April 15, 2009

iTunes Goes DRM Free and Removes DRM Restrictions

Good news for iTunes users. After a long wait, Apple is following through with their promise and working to remove DRM (Digital Rights Managed) restrictions on their entire catalogue. 8 million tunes done for the music download service, just 2 million to go. Catch the full story:

iTunes Gets DRM Free, New Prices, Purchase Over 3G - Article from Gizmodo.

Coming at the same time as the new iTunes Variable Pricing model, this is a move in the positive direction answering to the customer's demands as before, with DRM restrictions, when people would download music with them, the files would have limitations to how many computers the song could be on at once, or how many times it could be burned to disk. These restrictions would also limit the type of devices you could use to listen back to the music purchased. For iTunes, this is all a thing of the past.

Check out our iTunes Review for a look at what our reviewers think.

A friendly tip, if you download more than an album's worth of music a month, it is much more cost efficient to go with one of the music subscription services reviewed on our site. Only legal sites are reviewed and we take a look at everything from music selection to customer service. Take a look at some of our top sites:

Music Subscription Sites:

Superpass Review
Napster Review
eMusic Review

Alternative Pay-Per-Song Site:

If you haven't checked them out yet and are still convinced on the pay-per-song model, read the following review and compare it to our iTunes Review. We might just convert you:

Amazon MP3 Review

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