Friday, June 21, 2013

Every little helps...

So there's this online radio thing from Tesco called Blinkbox, which is, apparently, "the easiest way to listen to the music you already love, or discover new favourites - all for free". I'm not sure what I did to earn an email from them alerting me to the existence of Blinkbox but, hey, when you get an unsolicited email the first thing you should do is click on the link, right?
Well it looks like your standard online radio thing, so I decided to check out the Classical stations. A bunch of stuff there, though with prominence given to "Classical Crossover" and "Now Classical", which is to say excerpts from "Now that's what I call classical". Hmm, am I in their demographic? Ah, but there's one station called "Contemporary Classical" so I'll give that a go. 
I do like Janacek's Sinfonietta all right, but in what sense does music written by someone who died in 1928 count as "contemporary"? Also the absence of a credit for the performers is a black mark.
On screen there's a bunch of album covers and if I mouse over one I get the chance to create a station based on this album. So I try it with "The John Adams Earbox" and get... an excerpt from Berg's Wozzeck. Ah. Then something by Stockhausen. Then Britten's Simple Symphony. And now I'm listening to a bit of Mothertongue by Nico Muhly who at least has the virtue of being alive, even if this doesn't sound much like John Adams.
Shall we try another station? Oh, lets! How about "Classical Essentials"?
First up: "Spring" from The Four Seasons.

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