12 November 2009

Pandora stations

I've been enjoying using Pandora as my car radio for the past few months. I've only got two primary stations that I listen to. The Baroque station, seeded with "Johann Sebastian Bach", I'll use for driving-to-work music. The game is to name the composer in the first 20 seconds or so. I've gotten better at nationality (although Handel always sounds English to me) and I've realized that Vivaldi had a more expressive palette than I'd given him credit for. Otherwise, my score's only ~60%. Corelli and Fernando Sor always sneak up and mess with my head.

The other station is, naturally, seeded with "Close to the Edge". It'll basically replay a cross-section of the art rock of my youth with some pleasant surprises. Gentle Giant--who I was only introduced to in college and thought was too free-jazzy--gets in there with "Cogs in Cogs". A short, rapid 16th note heavy piece that made me realize how much Echolyn borrowed from them. The station also plays a song called "My New World" by Transatlantic. They seem to be the Asia of the 2000s, but much less gay. The source bands, Dream Theater and Spock's Beard, were two that represented--at least for me--the transition from Art Rock to Prog Rock, with the latter being generally more studio metal (not a fan). "My New World" is nice if a little too far in the opposite direction. Chris Squire's "Silently Falling" I could have really enjoyed when I first discovered Yes, but it's just kindof nice now. Also, from the station's prompting, I'm appreciating Yes's "Awaken" and several songs from Tormato more than originally.

Pandora's not the end-all, but it's a good option. I've got a (hidden) web site to allow me to generate and stream playlists from my MP3s at home (often enjoyed at work), but the HTML and M3Us're a little too funky right now for my BlackBerry Storm to support it.

[ posted by sstrader on 12 November 2009 at 7:26:22 PM in Music ]