January 23, 2019

loquearde Staff Picks: What’s The Most Miserably Sad Album Of All-Time?

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The post-holiday blues are real and February, the month of love, is just around the corner. If after reading these statements you’re feeling as ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ as we are, then you will probably enjoy our Staff Picks on the Saddest Albums.

This time, we have asked our staff to think about the saddest album ever. Be careful while checking this list because the effects of listening to these artists can be devastating. Indulge on this all-you-can-cry buffet with us.

Fleetwood MacLandslide

Sad album Fleetwood Mac - Landslide cover

I never realised this song had been released as a single in the 90s, I just knew the album version and the one on the live album. It’s not a sad sad song, but a beautifully sad one. And after over 40 years since its release date, it still hits me right in the feels every time I hear it. Let me just say I shouldn’t listen to this in the car or anywhere else where a clear vision is required.

– Lilian

Songs: Ohia ‎– Ghost Tropic

Sad album Ohia - Ghost Tropic cover

Lumbering and somber, but somehow effortlessly incorporates tropical birdsong. The lyrics are bleak, even for Jason Molina, and they hang suspended for perusal. A harrowing, gorgeous meditation on an ending.

– Jason

Dragging An Ox Through Water – Panic Sentry

Sad albums Dragging An Ox Through Water ‎– Panic Sentry cover

I don’t know that this album has to be sad but it sure is for me. This album is tied to a time of loss for me and the hauntingly unusual esoteric sounds synched up perfectly with my grief.

– Alex

Keane ‎– Hopes And Fears

Sad album Keane - Hopes And Fears cover

Kinda hopeful, but at the same time super sad. To me, this is the ultimate heartbreak album.

– Marilyn

Elliott Smith – Either / Or

Sad album Elliott Smith - Either : Or cover

Haunting, yet inspiring. This record dives deep into the troubled mind of (then) Portland resident Elliott Smith. A genuine take from a compassionate musician struggling with feelings of loss, grief, and depression.

– Steven

Sufjan Stevens‎ – Carrie & Lowell

Sad album Sufjan Stevens - Carrie & Lowell cover

Sufjan Stevens voice has always had a melancholy effect on me and this record is especially sad. Beautiful but sad.

– Claire

Glen HansardMarketa Irglova – Once (Music From The Motion Picture)

Sad album Once (from the motion picture) cover

I’m a sucker for musical dramas. Once does not disappoint. Set in Ireland, a vacuum repairman moonlights as a struggling street musician hoping for a big break (or any break, really). Heartache, compassion, and revelations ensue. I’m not crying… You’re crying.

– Bailey

Low ‎– Things We Lost In The Fire

Sad albums Low - Things We Lost In The Fire cover

This is one of the most heartbreaking, relentlessly sad albums of all-time. It’s also a beautiful one whenever this slowcore maestros allow a little bit of light to penetrate in the gloomy atmospheres. It’s one of those few perfect records out there.

– Javi

The XXThe XX

Sad albums The XX - The XX album cover

Surely this was not meant to be a sad album but it triggers something sad in me. Sometimes, after listening to the whole album I turn kinda blue, maybe some memories or experiences from the past. Anyway, it’s my favourite The XX album and I will share a funny story with you: I used this CD in the car and it fell in a canal in Rotterdam. I went walking my dog every day to see if the tide was low enough to find it and pick it up. Two weeks after, I saw it, tied my dog to a pole and went down to the canal to grab it. I recovered it and it still works, a happy ending after all! Moral of the story, never leave a loose CD in the door pocket of your car. Click here for pictures of the rescue.

– Esther

Mount Eerie ‎– A Crow Looked At Me

Sad albums Mount Eerie - A Crow Looked At Me cover

Candid and sobering.

– Aaron

Nick Drake – Pink Moon

Sad albums Nick Drake - Pink Moon cover

Beautifully-written heart-wrenching piece of poetry.

– Coumba

Elliott Smith – Either / Or

Elliott Smith - Either : Or album cover

Seconding Steven on this one. The line “Got a broken heart and your name on my cast” kills me everytime.

– Jess, Community Marketer (Gearogs, Bookogs, Filmogs, Posterogs, VinylHub)

The post Staff Picks: What’s The Most Miserably Sad Album Of All-Time? appeared first on Discogs Blog.

from Discogs Blog

“The only way to prepare for sessions is to first build…

via The Real Mick Rock

Office Ambience 420

via The Wire: Home

jfl #morninglistening to #Schubert #PianoSonatas w/#WilhelmKempff on…

#morninglistening to #Schubert #PianoSonatas w/#WilhelmKempff on @dgclassics’ new 9CD/#blurayaudio release
Classics in a gorgeous #futureproof edition.
#classicalmusiccollection #FranzSchubert #Kempff #DeutscheGrammophon #PianoMusic #solokeyboard #pianosonata #bluray

from Ionarts

This Is Not This Heat bow out in May

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15 unusual uses for Mozart

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart


As he sat down to put pen to score, what did Mozart think his music might achieve? Something on the lines of pleasing listeners, challenging performers, satisfying patrons and keeping the wolf from his own door, we suspect.

Think again, Wolfgang – you’ve underestimated yourself. Undisputed genius though he was, he can surely have had little idea how, two centuries later, masterpieces such as Eine kleine Nachtmusik and The Magic Flute would be credited with powers stretching well beyond the concert hall and opera house.

It was Alfred A Tomatis who, in 1991, suggested that listening to the great man’s music helped brain development. Dr Tomatis’s ‘Mozart Effect’ has generated no little debate since, but by then he had lit the touch paper – suddenly, inquisitive scientists, innovative farmers, ingenious marketeers and the like were looking at just what the great Austrian could do for them.

Here, we present 15 of the finest examples of how Mozart has been put to use in the modern day…


1. More alcoholic wine

Let’s begin in the rolling hills of Tuscany. For Carlo Cignozzi, a wine-maker from Siena, playing The Magic Flute to his vines has become an important part of the production process.

Since 2005, the Italian has been piping Mozart’s opera over 56 speakers in one of his Brunello vineyards – the grapes ripen in 14 days as opposed to the normal 20 which, we learn, in turn increases the wine’s alcoholic content.

‘From this vineyard,’ says Cignozzi, ‘a special Brunello is born: “Flauto Magico”, the first wine in the world ever to have been grown completely in tune with Mozart’s musical harmonies.’ BBC Music Magazine is hoping that Signor Cignozzi may feel the need  to sent us a bottle or two for, ahem, research purposes. Or perhaps a case.




2. Less alcoholic students

The joys of the grape and the grain can, of course, be taken a little too far. But, thankfully, Mozart is here to help too.

In 1999, officials at Pittsburgh University got so fed up with the sight of students rolling around paralytic that drastic action was decided upon: Eine kleine Nachtmusik was subsequently played through loudspeakers on campus between 10pm and 2am in the hope that it might encourage a little behavioural moderation.

Whether or not it worked, the choice of composer certainly caused uproar on campuses elsewhere. ‘Mozart is the most conservative and middle-brow of the lot,’ fumed Zoe Abrams of Manchester University students’ union very, very angrily, if not entirely accurately. ‘What gives them the right to inflict such punishment?’



3. Clearer water

Should you prefer water to wine, do make sure that it is similarly Amadeus-enhanced. Research carried out in the late 1990s by Masaru Emoto, an entrepreneur and doctor of alternative medicine, apparently shows that water which has had Mozart played to it produces clearer crystals when frozen than water that has been exposed to heavy rock music.

Interestingly, as Emoto explains in his series of books called The Message From Water, Mozart-water is similar in terms of crystal clarity to that of pure mountain streams. We are not making any of this up.



4. More plentiful milk

Milk-drinkers should give thanks to Mozart, too. In 2007, dairy farmer Hans Pieter Sieber was delighted to discover the power of the composer’s Concerto for Flute and Harp on his herd of 700 Friesian heifers in Villanueva del Pardillo, Spain.

When playing the work to his cows as they lined up for milking, Sieber noticed a general air of bovine calm and contentment, which soon equated in real terms to an increased production of milk of up to six litres per animal.

‘It is relaxing music for them but, at the same time, it is dynamic, it keeps the cows active,’ explained Sieber’s son Nicolas. ‘The trick is not to have music that is too relaxing.’



5. Eggier Eggs

And while we’re on the subject of dairy… Leading up to the 2003 Mannheim Mozart Festival, the organisers thought it might be a good wheeze to play 14 days of solid Wolfgang Amadeus to 3,000 hens at a local farm, just to see how it affected egg production.

The answer was, in terms of quantity, not a jot. However, when served the Mozartian eggs at the festival, concert-goers said they ‘definitely tasted better’. Possibly not the most scientifically informed study ever.




6. Calmer dogs

In 2006, an RSPCA rescue centre in Somerset unleashed a veritable pack of ‘Woofgang Amadeus’ headlines when it revealed that it had installed a £2,000 sound system to help out when some of its canine residents were getting a little feisty.

The dogs, said staff at the West Hatch kennels near Taunton, would quickly relax to Mozart and Bach, but not so pop or dance music. ‘It definitely works,’ enthused deputy manager Anita Clarke. ‘It’s quieter in the kennels now.’



7. Friskier sharks

Now over to the aquarium where, in 2007, love was, alas, most certainly not in the air. Or, rather, not in the water. When Bloodnose, a 20-year-old male brown shark, consistently showed little interest in 15-year-old Lucy, scientists at the Blackpool Sea Life Centre played him the Romanza from Eine kleine Nachtmusik to try and get him in the mood. Hmmm.

Three years have since passed, and the lack of any announcements of a new brood of Don Giovanni-loving sharklets rather leads us to conclude that the experiment, described as a ‘little bit nutty’ by Bloodnose’s supervisor Carey Duckhouse, has not been entirely successful. A pity.



8. Super rodents

How do you get rats to negotiate a maze in double quick time? Simple – play them Mozart’s Sonata in D Major for Two Pianos, as former cellist-turned-experimental-psychologist Frances Rauscher discovered in 1998.

While enjoying this very diet of special K488, her lab rats at the University of Wisconsin were able to negotiate a labyrinth far faster than when there was silence – asked to explain the phenomenon, Rauscher suggested that the music was stimulating certain neuron connections in the abstract reasoning part of the brain.

Interestingly, similar results have also been observed in separate experiments on mice, which not only moved quicker to Mozart, but also ground to almost a halt when exposed to hard rock music. And then attacked each other.



9. Sportier athletes

Mozart can make people move faster, too. In April 2004, just before his country was due to host the Olympics, Dr Thanassis Dritsas, cardiologist and adviser to the Greek Olympic team, pointed out the benefits of listening to the composer’s works as part of a training routine.

‘Before every workout there should be 10 to 15 minutes of classical music at a slow, easy pace, so that exercise begins at a low pulse-rate to aid the blood flow to the muscles,’ he advised. Four months later, Greece won six gold medals, its biggest haul since 1896. 



10. Fewer yobs

What, or rather who, does it take to prevent louts from making people’s lives misery in public spaces? Yes, you’ve guessed right. In the early 2000s, Tyne and Wear Metro successfully scared unruly types away from its station with occasional blasts of Mozart and Vivaldi.

‘They seem to loathe it,’ said a delighted spokesman. ‘It’s pretty uncool to be seen hanging around somewhere when Mozart is playing.’ Which is all a bit depressing, really.



11. Quicker growing babies

So now for one of the more heart-warming discoveries. Doctors in Tel Aviv say that playing Mozart to premature babies has been shown to make them grow faster.

The reason, they say, is because babies use less energy when lying back and listening to the gentle strains of the composer’s music than when left in silence, and so put on weight more quickly. But, they insist, it has to be Mozart.

‘The repetitive melodies in Mozart’s music may be affecting the organisational centres of the brain’s cortex,’ says Dr Dror Mandel. ‘Unlike Beethoven, Bach or Bartók, Mozart’s music is composed with a melody that is highly repetitive.’ It’s suggested that, in enabling babies to go home earlier, the finding could save hospitals millions of pounds.




12. …and quicker growing fish

Sadly for gilthead seabream, they also appear to grow more rapidly when serenaded by a little Mozart.

A discernable acceleration in growth was observed when bream at the Applied Hydrobiology at the Agricultural University of Athens were played the Romanza from Eine Kleine Nachtmusik (see also No. 7 – it must be a fish thing) for the first 89 days of their lives and, it seems, they were better developed too.

Given that a date with a dinner plate and a hungry Athenian probably awaited them, one imagines that the fish themselves were none too chuffed about this little speeding up of matters…



13. Tastier ham

Likewise, how would one break it to a poor pig that the real reason he is going to be treated to a bit of Mozart is to make him tastier in the long run? This, though, is exactly what happens at the Embutidos Fermin meat company in La Alberca, Spain.

‘When it’s time for them to meet their maker, they play them Mozart,’ said Don Harris, whose company imports the meat to the US, in 2008. ‘After Mozart, they go to bed for the night. The next morning they go off to piggy heaven. They want them very mellow. If they’re scared, they produce epinephrine. If they’re not stressed, the meat is fine.’




14. More breakdownable sewage

What is it about The Magic Flute? Not only does it help grapes ripen quicker (see No. 1), it also makes faeces decompose faster. Or so says Anton Stucki, chief operator of the sewage centre in Treuenbrietzen near Berlin.

Earlier this year, we reported how Stucki has recorded a noticeable speeding up in the breakdown of biomass since he started playing Mozart’s opera throughout the plant – so much so that the centre is expecting to save around 1,000 euros a month.

‘We think the secret is in the vibrations of the music, which penetrate everything,’ Stucki explained. ‘It creates a certain resonance that stimulates the microbes and helps them to work better. But of course you need the right frequencies and the right music, and Mozart hits the spot.’



15. Gigglier biologists

Finally, the most remarkable Mozart effect of all. In 2001, researchers at Trinity University, San Antonio, Texas showed how plants exposed to the sound of the Concerto in G photosynthesise more quickly than if left in silence or, amazingly, than if they ‘listen’ to Bach. Or did they?

While the research paper comes complete with tables of figures and long words than non-biologists don’t understand, the citing of that nebulous ‘Concerto in G’ raises suspicions of inauthenticity – which are confirmed when the likes of B Spears, J Brahms and WJ Clinton appear in the list of sources at the end. Ho ho. Those wacky lab researchers.



Mark Kimber Classic Album Sundays Canterbury Presents Miles Davis ‘In A Silent Way’

In February Classic Album Sundays celebrates the 50th Anniversary of Miles Davis’ brilliant, divisive and game-changing masterpiece.

In A Silent Way, released in 1969, marked a transitional moment, not only in Davis’s career but in the future development of jazz as a whole. Considered by many to be the first fusion recording, it also commenced the composer’s most divisive phase – commonly referred to as his “Electric Period”. This groundbreaking album would test latent tensions surrounding the future identity of jazz, its relationship with new technology, and the questions of authenticity which these contentious issues would draw into focus.

Whilst Davis was no longer the young, hip savant that he once was, his new relationship with the youthful singer Betty Maybry had renewed the composer’s interest in the contemporary pop landscape. Introducing Davis to the likes of The Jimi Hendrix Experience and Sly Stone, Maybry (alongside recommendations from drummer Tony Williams) would unknowingly guide the musician into one of the most distinctive and contentious eras of his work. Nonetheless, Davis’s transition towards this new palette was methodically considered, a culmination of ideas absorbed from collaborators and developed particularly through a new style of performance, which saw his band blend each separate compositions into one meandering flow of continuous music – a style stuck to rigorously until at least 1975.

Join us to experience the album as never before.


Time and Date: Sunday 24th February 3:30pm – 5:30pm


Vinylstore Jr, 20 Castle Street, Canterbury, CT1 2QJ


£6.88 in Advance


Jack Hues and Gina Lapsley

Audio Menu

Rega Elys 2 moving magnet cartridge, Rega Planar 3 turntable, Rega Elex-R amplifier, Chord Signature speaker cables, Bowers and Wilkins 607 speakers.

Listen: Miles Davis ‘Kind of Blue’ Musical Lead-Up Playlist


The post Classic Album Sundays Canterbury Presents Miles Davis ‘In A Silent Way’ appeared first on Classic Album Sundays.

from Classic Album Sundays

Adventures In Sound And Music hosted by Shane Woolman

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jfl #morninglistening to #FranzLiszt late #pianoworks on…

#morninglistening to #FranzLiszt late #pianoworks on #NationalHandwritingDay.
@hyperionrecords feat. @TiberghienC
#AnnéesDePèlerinage troisième année #Wiegenlied et al.
#classicalmusiccollection #classicalmusic #handwritingday #Liszt #cédrictiberghien #pianomusic #solokeyboard #HyperionRecords #classicalcdcollection #GermanRomanticism

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