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Charles Martel’s Top 1000: Part 31

How do we define bad music? It can be ‘bad’ on more than one level, not just the obvious, badly performed. Although any piece of music will be ruined by a bad performance, can a good performance rescue something that is badly written? Can a well-written piece of music be spoilt by inappropriate performing, such […]

Charles Martel’s Top 1000: Part 30

Last week, I mentioned French black metal which segues nicely into this week’s discussion on the importance of language in song. Do you have to be able to understand the words of the song in order to appreciate it? In this list are tracks sung in a variety of languages including French, Japanese, German, Icelandic, […]

Charles Martel’s Top 1000: Part 29

Last week I looked at how young people pick up music from their parents. Is the reverse true? Without having kids I do not know for sure, but in my experience some kids are less tolerant than their parents. Earlier this year I finally got to see Alcest in concert. Alcest are a French black […]

Charles Martel’s Top 1000: Part 28

One fact I find quite engaging is how many people of the generation below me, as it were, got their musical introduction from listening to their parents’ (my generation) record collection. A few months ago I was at a John Watts gig and found myself talking to some young people who could only have been […]

Charles Martel’s Top 1000: Part 27

I have been asked in the past, not the least by Mrs Martel, why music is so important to me. I can only explain in the most general terms, that it was what I grew up with. Music spoke to me and said things about me in ways in which I could not. Music represented […]

Charles Martel’s Top 1000: Part 26

Of course there are some who valiantly fight against this major label hegemony. Indeed, the Enemies List label states that it declares war on the majors. Independent record labels do their best and labels such as Cherry Red, Renascent, Rhino and the like specialise in reissuing lost classics. But they cannot take on the financial […]

Charles Martel’s Top 1000: Part 25

So, should you download music without paying for it? Yes. Why? Three reasons. First, if you already own it on vinyl it comes under fair use. If it did not, then every time you rip a CD to your iPhone you would be breaking the law and I cannot see the courts enforcing that. Second, […]

Charles Martel’s Top 1000: Part 24

But in this day and age, this time of the internet and the information superhighway, surely it ought to be easy to hear new stuff? Well, the record companies are bearing down on that too. Crippling criminal and civil cases filed against file sharing sites is an attempt to cut off one supply of new […]

Charles Martel’s Top 1000: Part 23

As we have seen, record companies foist their product on us all as long as it sells. And that is what they want you to hear. In order, so they think, to maximise sales, they seek to cut off every opportunity for you to hear something different. The output of UK radio stations is little […]

Charles Martel’s Top 100: Part 22

Who are these greatest enemies of modern music I spoke of last week? Answer – the major label record companies. Let’s get one thing straight – these organisations are out to make money. When they find something that makes them money they will keep repeating it until it wears out. If you have ever wondered […]

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