I love MP3. Everyone should love MP3. It's the best thing to happen to music since, well, since ever. What is so great about MP3? First of all, you can hear CD-quality music for free. Second, artists with absolutely no money or agents or promoters or whatever can get their music to a (somewhat) broad audience. Of course, with these two positive qualities are also where the problems with MP3 lie. To put it quite simply, there are a lot of artists out there--many of them mediocre at best, unlistenable at worst. You could spend hour after hour roaming the various artist pools and find nothing. But, of course, that's true at regular record stores, too! The key is to find a starting point--one great artist, whose music is instantly as good as anything put out by regular record labels. When you visit that artist's page, you'll find an "Other Artists We Like" list. Visit the artists on that list, listen to and download their stuff. Then check out their "Other Artists We Like" lists, and you're off. Once you've started, you'll find plenty of great stuff. For example, I once visited a site by a group called Fennesz. They're a Russian group, closely associated with Solar X and the Art-Tek label. They make weird, experimental IDM. I love their stuff. On their "Other Artists" list, there is a group called EU. I visited that link, checked out the songs, and was immediately sold. EU are also Russian, and also part of the Art-Tek label, and their music is equally wonderful, with CGD, samples, FX, 303 bass and funky keyboard lines building-blocked together to create red-hot IDM tunes. Their music is not only outstanding but plentiful--they have 4 CDs for sale at their MP3 site and an Art-Tek CD on its way. This particular album, 19, contains twelve songs and is well over 55 minutes long. I think it is their best. And at US$9, it's a steal. Check it out--listen to the samples, download the mp3 tracks available for free. Then get the album. Support MP3!
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