Monday, April 18, 2011
Metallica 03/12/1989 Philadelphia
A cleanly laid out, nicely detailed Metallica boot site lists two recordings for the night. One is a PAL audience.
It seems as if my tribute to tapetrader.com has turned into an epitaph. All of that information is now unavailable to access. There are murmurings on various forums that the responsible parties were having financial problems with their host. A long time ago, I was curious as to why, financially, the site existed in the first place. I found an interview with the developer where he explained that he was responsible for training Coldfusion developers professionally and he maintained the site for those purposes. As the years went on, state of the art search (say, for instance, appearances of a specific text string through all the disc descriptions) and web 2.0 features never appeared and made the site seem rickety. But, of course, the main reason the site became less popular is that it was overshadowed by torrent trackers, as downloading a video file is a hell of a lot more convenient than emailing dozens of strangers, burning discs, and going to the post office to send them through the mail. Just the same, I would often go to the site just to survey what has been filmed or taped...Soundboards of the Cleveland Agora, for example. Or all video files ever traded with images of Elvis...It will take a long time for all of this to reappear online. And in a centralized location, perhaps it never will. http://www.setlist.fm has already stepped in for people to wiki in what they know about shows...and there is songkick as well...These may disappear too one day, of course, but as their information is served to the public as webpages, it is a lot more amenable for independent users to crawl and archive. Just as people have archived public sites like dead bulletin boards or yahoo geocities.
01 - The Ecstasy Of Gold
02 - Blackened
03 - For Whom The Bell Tolls
04 - Welcome Home (Sanitarium)
05 - Leper Messiah
06 - Harvester Of Sorrow
07 - Eye Of The Beholder
08 - Bass Solo
09 - To Live Is To Die Jam
10 - Master Of Puppets
11 - One
12 - Seek & Destroy
13 - ...And Justice For All
14 - Creeping Death
15 - Fade To Black
16 - Guitar Solo
17 - Battery
Metallica versus Napster. This was the headline more than a few years ago. The blacks and whites of it all are perhaps now even harder to get to the bottom of. Technology marches on. Yesterday's power structure tries to delay its adoption for a percentage of a population for a short time, but eventually it must itself adapt. Browsing Cryptome the other day, I found an interesting link to a recent textbook which attempt to assess the current scope of international entertainment piracy. In historical retrospect, the real significance of the music industry will be seen as a mere catalyst for the mass production of consumer electronics. Where economies of scale will eventually permit the manufacturers to mass produce smaller and more powerful things...things which, inevitably, will create far more social transformation than the creation of audio recordings.
The future, or rather the present, is subscription. Instead of owning the physical medium in which the files themselves are kept (how inconvenient!), digital music files will be something that is subscribed to. This is a gray area of ignorance for me, personally, as I have yet to make the transition to having all of my interest in music satisfied by a recommendation engine powered by Pandora or Spotify and delivered to me on my cell phone...This is the future, of course. Where the content of every communication that appears in the span of your attention will be cataloged into an account specific to your unique identity. Will the Apple or Amazon or Netflix cloud deliver to us this ratty footage of a 20 year old concert by Metallica? Given the grayness of its independent origins, I would say it's unlikely. While Metallica is the kind of band that first world cell phone markets want emanating from their phones, the forces behind Metallica are still powerful enough that they must make these official channels pay recompense.
Yet, the data network corporations are growing to such stature that the concerns of the vestiges of the recording industry will eventually lose all consequence. Glyn Moody (whose Rebel Code and Digital Code of Life books are very well researched and very perceptive) recently remarked that, with Google's capital, they might as well merely buy all of the record labels outright, rather than be troubled with their lawsuits and licensing demands.
One day, it will all be in the cloud. And as long as you have this month's subscription fee, the cloud will have your fix. But what if, one day, the cloud disappears? Google itself is going to make the 2.8 million videos that people have uploaded to Google Video unavailable for viewing in a weeks time. Although we can presume that a lot of them A) exist in another form somewhere else or B) has no conceivable bearing on any cognitive inquiry that the species might imagine, the magnitude of it is pretty staggering. How many MB were lost with the library of Alexandria? Of course, headlines claim that Google is erasing this data, but Google says no such thing. It says that it will only be unavailable for internet viewing.
And how reliable is communication across the cloud? As of today, you and I can use YouTube to view Metallica playing Philadephia in 1989. But it could very well disappear tomorrow, just as a video of Prince that I embedded in one of my posts went on to be dutifully removed at the request of the artist himself. Whatever the rightness or wrongness of these uploads actually happens to be, it is Google, not the artist nor fans, that has much of the power when it comes to deciding if they will remain. As far as official Hollywood content goes, apparently the network has devised extremely clever algorithms that can automatically, within an hour, identify a snippet of these when someone attempts to upload them into its database. These methods will only improve. How long before master of puppet facial recognition programs can return every video in which a person appears, regardless of the age that they appear in those stored images?
A second uploader has nonembeddably posted the concert to youtube HERE, I leave it to the obsessed to determine what the overall lineages are. I guess I'm generally kinda curious as to what the best bootleg is for this tour. If anyone reading this has any opinion, definitely leave a comment.