A few months ago, I stumbled on The Staves “Tired as Fuck,” and it’s been a go-to listen on YouTube, Spotify, etc. It’s got a great build – adding layers until it turns into a chorus of voices and blistering guitar and throbbing percussion.
Really, you should listen to it right now if you haven’t already.
And now, the rant… I really want to buy a copy of this, but it’s only available digitally. I can buy it via iTunes, or listen on Spotify and Apple Music. (Or YouTube.) Or I can buy it via Nonesuch as an MP3. (Presumably, I hope, at 320.) No CD, no vinyl, not even FLAC.
Maybe demand is no longer there, but I don’t want my only copy of music to be digital.
I recently went with a deal on Bandcamp to buy 200+ releases from Buckethead, and it was similar – no vinyl, no CD, just digital. At least in this case, Bandcamp offers FLAC so the music quality is as good as you get on CD, even if you don’t get the actual physical media. (And Bandcamp has a reasonably good archival experience, I can go back for my purchases anytime – at least as long as they remain in business. Which I hope is a long time.)
Similarly, one of my favorite scrappy Indie labels (Magnatune) stopped offering physical media a long time ago. They’re such an awesome outfit, I’m happy to subscribe and have access to their catalog, but… I’d really love to have physical copies of Ehren Starks’ catalog, and Ninety Pounds of Ugly‘s Richmond Motel Room 3. (Pity they’ve broken up.)
For folks who only want digital, that’s great – but I want a pristine, physical copy. Hell, I want something the artist or band can sign if I get the chance. Something that, assuming civilization survives, somebody might pick up in 100 years and listen to.