In XLR8R's "The Art of the Mix CD" feature, Derek Opperman wonders if the mix CD still means anything in the age of free mixes available in every corner of the internet. His panel of interviewees (all of whom recently released a commercial mix CD) say yes, although would you expect them to say no? It would be like saying "don't buy my CD, there's no point to it". The consensus seems to be that the CD is a more carefully curated mix of songs compared to the typical free online mix. Plus the CD can offer other perks, like exclusive unreleased tracks and special packaging, that you won't get in an online mix.
But you have to read all the way to the end to hear the punchline, courtesy of Jack Dunning aka Untold -- "I'm kind of glad that we got [this mix CD] out this year, because in one, two years' time, I don't know if it'll be viable from a distribution point of view". One thousand words reporting on the supposed magic and relevance of the mix CD, but by the end, they basically admit that the mix CD won't exist in a few years time! I also think that the music world will lose something forever when the mix CD goes the way of the homemade mixtape, and I'm also fairly sure that Dunning is right.
Mario Kolonić Pytzek interviews journalist Philip Sherburne for Burek, and Sherburne is on point as usual. I was surprised to read that he's grown out of clubbing somewhat and finds the time to spend 10-12 hours a day listening to and reviewing music. I would have liked to hear more about how records generate "buzz" these days. People have been discussing consensus building and the hivemind mentality (online or otherwise) since forever, but music discovery, purchase/download, and consumption habits are constantly in flux and I would have liked to hear more from Sherburne on the topic. Plus, his comment that "writers and editors gravitate toward what is already getting 'buzz'" is a bit of a dodge -- after all, where does that buzz originate? Don't those same writers and editors look to generate it from their own writings, at least some of the time?