Good Reads: (1) The European Union Commission is focusing legislation on member states over noise pollution in cities (cnn.com). … (2) Finally, someone (Tony Green) takes on the “most bogus claim in the music business,” i.e., that one is “classically trained” (slate.com). … (3) I sent a note to engadget.com, asking for suggestions about iPod alternatives (specifically, flash-based items with screens that support multiple operating systems and drag’n’drop). They posted it, and about 50 people responded (engadget.com). … (4) How to copy a vinyl album using your computer scanner (link), via makezine.com.
… Select New Releases: Sara Ayers debuts her enviro-ambient A Million Stories CD (Dark Wood Recordings). … More new release info at brainwashed.com/releases.
… Disquiet Heavy Rotation: (1) The top Disquiet Downstream entry this past week, easily, was “For Amanda” (July 11, MP3) from allthatfall‘s hopecrash EP, on the luv sound netlabel. It opens with a tasty horn’n’guitar salvo that you won’t get out of your head any time soon. … (2) Missy Elliott‘s new album, The Cookbook, is her least Timbaland-heavy, certainly, but she’s not short on fine production, as the 12″ for the Neptunes-produced “On and On” shows: rubberized beats, lots of space, syrupy scratching. It’s a good recipe (and the 12″ includes an instrumental). … (3) Alarm Will Sound‘s album of unplugged Aphex Twin covers, Acoustica, is now out, and the winner may be a solo piano take on the Drukqs album’s “Avril 14th,” which, of course, was solo piano in the first place. Close runner up: “Gwely Mernans,” which revels in light counterpoint.
… Quote of the Week: Robb Witts (link) on thinking of John Cage during the public moment of silence after the July 7 bombings in London: “Cage discovered that there is no true silence, that even in the deepest quiet our human ears are filled with the background hum of our own fleshy machinery. By taking our act of remembrance into the streets, we performed a memorial of quiet, in which the presence of our fellow Londoners was audible by the absence of their sound.” (Via Robert Gable‘s site, aworks.)