Skip to main content

What did the new #iOS and/or #iTunes do to my album art work?

I love iOS7. I love its flat UI and attendant absence of gradients, especially noticeable in the much-improved appearance of the core app icons (haters gonna hate) and those of third-party apps that were updated by developers keen on keeping with the new aesthetic. I love the fastidious little gesture now required to close an app, the indulgent thumb flick that makes me feel like an Ottoman sultan dismissing some minor nobel to deal with his own affairs. I love the little navigation back button, the bold title bars now featured in most apps, and the endlessly useful Command Center. Above all, I love that iOS7 persuasively evinces the commitment of Apple to creating and curating a mobile operating system experience that is as elegant as it is functional.

But there is one thing I hate: I *hate* what is has done to album art in the Music App. What has it done, you ask, that it is deserving of my ire? Here, here is what it has done:

This ain't no art rock
That man is the one, the only Peter Gabriel (you can tell because his name is printed in the photo, because I'm telling you it's Peter Gabriel, and because it's *Peter Gabriel*). As great as he is, though, he did not compose or perform the song "I Zimbra," the Talking Heads' brilliant incorporation of Afrobeat that prefigured their masterpiece, "Remain in Light." So, why, when the cover art from both albums (Peter Gabriel's "So" and The Talking Heads' "Fear of Music") was pulled from iTunes' own CDDB database and displays on the correct album in that program, does iOS Music have an issue?

When I pull up Peter Gabriel's "So," I find Underworld's "Second Toughest in the Infants" cover art. Strange bedfellows.

Peter Gabriel would never write such a nonsensical album title
At first, I thought this was limited to one or two albums, but it turns out it's endemic across my music library, regardless of whether the album was purchased from iTunes or Amazon or was imported from CD and whether the artwork was in the CDDB or I had to pull it from Google Image Search. The album art for most of my albums displays incorrectly.

Here, the artwork for Matthew Dear's "Black City" fronts for The Orb's "U.F.Orb."

It's not like they wouldn't consider collaborating
Fortunately, I found the "U.F.Orb" album artwork moonlighting as the cover for TV On The Radio's first album.

Your love is a satellite...

I don't ask for much, but I do have certain basic expectations of our elite technology companies. Apple, I know that you're not the "data" guys, but this is pretty basic. You've collected the metadata once, just replicate the same association in both programs. *Fix this*!

Popular posts from this blog

The best albums of 2015 by some guy on the Internet (*finally*)

[Horribly delayed, I realize…]

I avoided this exercise last year in favor of...well, nothing in particular. I don’t know: I was focused on my new job, intent on maximizing my free time in a new city, and keen on ingesting the last bit of counterculture cool my then-neighborhood, the rapidly gentrifying Capitol Hill, had to offer, all of which left me unenthused with the prospect of enumerating the musical highlights of the preceding 12 months. Oh, sure, I started a list, which I’m fairly certain topped off at Swans’ To Be Kind, the lethal power cords, dislocating polyrhythms, and foreboding prophet-of-doom lyrics of which distilled the apocalyptic trajectory of 2014’s global political realities better than the news media itself.

But that was 2014. This is was 2015. Now I’m settled in a north Seattle, “we’re not suburbia, we just look like suburbia,” neighborhood, saddled with and luxuriating in all the trappings of the landed bourgeoisie (mortgage, runs to the hardware store and IKEA, a…

Tycho: ambient music for those who are succeeding in our contemporary economy?

There's a moment roughly 30 seconds into "Montana," the second track on Tycho's breakout 2014 album Awake, when you realize that the people who created this music can't possibly have experienced any adversity in their lives. For nearly 6 minutes, its mannerist, echo-ey guitar noodling melds with hazy synths and just noticeable bass over competent live drumming. It sounds great, the type of warm, organic electronic music that makes you feel as though the world is a place of unsullied wonder filled with promise and opportunity and absolutely lacking in the structural hurtles that have come to define our political moment. The euphoria it inspires is the pleasant, genteel kind bi-coastal types get from legal marijuana, a euphoria from which you can quickly sober up before heading back to your six-figure tech job, not the Rimbaudian sensorium-fucking kind which, though you might survive it, you will not come out of it whole.

It's the perfect sonic backdrop for an o…

Callus Coffee, a pre-review

Don't tell the bros of Callus Coffee, Seattle's newest coffee pop-up shop, that 2017 may be a little too late to get in on the trend of infilling America's urban cores with third-wave coffee bars bearing unfortunate, esoteric names. 2017 is a year of political upheaval, a year when the wheels of #resistance are turning, resolutely focused on forestalling #Trumpocalypse by galvanizing the American left in a united front the likes of which we haven't seen in generations.

It's time to retrench, for us all to focus on our essential values and ensure that our democratic institutions have the fortitude to provide for a viable future. This requires constructive anger. Apathy is not acceptable -- if you aren't angry, you aren't alive. It's difficult to maintain one's righteous fury when sampling the single-origin pour over offerings and mulling the purchase of artisanal coffee mugs at a new coffee bar in a former industrial district, all the while dicking a…