July 2, 2005

"Returning like superheroes." - June of 44.

What you didn't see: This AP article exactly communicates the disappointment we had with the absolutely pitiful, almost deplorable, Live 8 coverage as provided by MTV. To whit:

"And part of it was also MTV's failure to really try. There were as many commercial breaks as performances, and MTV's stable of correspondents spent more time talking about what a fantastic event it was instead of showing it."

We watched the entirety of the original Live Aid and recorded it to VHS in 1985, and frankly it was one of the most enjoyable things we've ever seen live or on TV. Today MTV consistently delivered half-performances interrupted incessantly by MTV announcers spewing meaningless banter. It was too much to bear. Finally we found the multiple live feeds at AOL Music (where you can now watch rebroadcasts, albeit in linear fashion by venue) and were able to watch what we wanted unmolested by brainless fools.

The only drawback was the stream wouldn't really support watching at a higher screen res than default, and whenever we attempted to turn the volume up, the screen went white and wouldn't re-load until we clicked over to another city's stream. But no matter, Live 8 if anything was a victory AOL Music, which historically has been a non-entity with few good ideas and little compelling content. Too bad for MTV -- all they needed to do was let the goddamn cameras run, just as they did 20 years ago. But apparently that was too much for them. Anyway, the only way Live 8 as a musical event can be salvaged is if all the performances are made available in some sort of DVD or on-demand fashion.

Pete Townshend is an incredible guitarist. We don't think this is fully apparent on The Who's studio recordings. His live work we've seen in various telecasts over the last five years has been mind-bending. Tinnitus seems worth it, Pete.

Elsewhere: Sleater-Kinney played on Letterman early this week and their performance was electrifying. Really, really powerful.

Finally: Pitchfork reported last week that the recently opened German techno label Kompakt's MP3 shop as already sold 100,000 tracks. That's pretty amazing.

That is all.

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