Monday, 21 November 2011

Gigantic Post About Music

I recently came across this very interesting musical project made in the late 1990s by artists Komar and Melamid with the help of composer Dave Soldier. Together, they set to record the most wanted song and the most unwanted song according to criterias determined through a survey distributed to 600 Americans. The results are interesting, but also surprising: it is with great difficulty that I listened to the most wanted song (to tell the truth, it is very close to my idea of the song I want to hear the least), but did not have as much trouble with the least wanted song, which was quite entertaining. Perhaps not for the full twenty-five minutes it lasts, but I must say it is worth listening to just for the rap-opera (and the accordion, and the bagpipes, and the children's choir...).
 The Most Unwanted Song (part 1):

You can listen to The Most Wanted Song here.

 I find this project very interesting since it really demonstrates the objectivity of music taste, and how much it is influenced by culture and exposure. I have been trying to make this experiment on myself by listing elements I like and dislike in music, but with little results. I suppose that unless I am directed in pointing out specific elements, my lists really can mean anything. I bet no one could, only by looking at my lists, pinpoint my very favourite song (also because I have many favourite songs which aren't alike), or the song I despise the most (because there are many songs I dislike).

Anyway, here are my lists just for fun:

-low notes 
-syncopated rythms 
-songs close to being off-tune (using bemols and dieses in unexpected ways) 
-sharp ending 
-voice organically mixed up with instruments 

-"80s" saxophone 
-misused drum machines (very objective, I know) 
-long solos that add nothing to the song 
-harp in pop ballads (and pop ballads in general)

Clearly, this doesn't lead anywhere. I'll just leave you with a few songs I enjoy, (which might or might not exemplify what this post is all about, oh dear):

  (Thanks to Fashion Forestry for linking Daphne Oram and her work, remember Snow?)

What about you?
I would be very interested in seeing your like and dislike lists, and feel free to include links!


  1. Definitely must say 'no' to '80s saxophone! And inane lyrics that don't know they're inane. On the pro side, I usually like a little sprinkling of harmonica.

  2. ha, I'd have to agree with this criticism: "80s" saxophone. ugh. Actually, anything that remotely signals the 80s generally turns me off in music, apart from Bowie and Kate Bush.

  3. Sarah: I agree with you for the inane lyrics, although I must admit I used to strongly dislike harmonica (the early Beatles and Bob Dylan converted me).

    Hila: Same for me, although I might add (some of) The Smiths and Joy Division to your list!


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