backmasking Music

The Devil’s in the Details

I came across a  BoingBoing post about the so-called Devil’s Interval, a musical form suppressed by the Church in the Middle Ages.

The post also talks about a new heavy metal documentary which ties the Devil’s Interval, a specific kind of musical interval that spans three whole tones, with the history of heavy metal.

See the BBC’s report called The Devil’s Music (with mp3 examples), and if it floats your boat, the metal history site (with documentary trailer) Metal: A Headbanger’s Journey.

Oh, and for the record, I’m pretty sure Xeni was just joking when she said, “When you play Wagner backwards, it goes, ‘I LOVE SATAN’. But nevertheless if that’s what you want to hear…


My Playlist

  1. Adam’s Song
  2. Needle in the Hay
  3. So Alone
  4. Hurt
  5. Bullet with Butterfly Wings
  6. Bohemian Rhapsody
  7. Creep
  8. Deep
  9. Jeremy
  10. Motion Picture Soundtrack
  11. Today
  12. Suicide is Painless

I remember posting this list in 2006, I was feeling extremely down that day… I guess it was too subtle for anyone* to notice. Discovering this list again today made me wish I could go back in time and tell myself that life gets so much better. And worse. But for better or worse, life is wonderful.

*Ok, at least one person noticed. Thanks Sherri S.


The Song Tapper

The Song Tapper is a neat web application that can help identify a song that maybe stuck in your head, but maybe you don’t remember the name of it. The way it works is to just tap the spacebar to the rhythm of each syllable in the lyrics of the song you want to identify and then the server returns several possible names and artists. It’s fun and surprisingly accurate.


Flickr Video

A folk/rock singer named Jonathan Coulton has created a really cool music video using Creative Commons licensed Flickr photos. It’ll put a smile on your face.

Jonathan Coulton’s


Plastic’s Perfect Album: The Follow-up

Two weeks ago I posted about’s story on the perfect album. Some guy has tabulated all the albums mentioned in the comments and placed them online.


The Perfect Album

I came across a thread on Plastic today about the perfect album.

“[The perfect album is one] in which every track is great, each one worthy of being a hit. An album with not a single song I would skip past and nothing mediocre or even average.

Here’s my list of perfect albums (I included soundtracks because though they are not really albums, when I listen to them I don’t hit the skip button once):

  • Radiohead :: Ok Computer (such a great album, though I have to admit I have been known to skip ‘Fitter Happier’ on occasion)
  • Weezer :: Blue Album
  • Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind Soundtrack
  • Counting Crows :: August and Everything After
  • Smashing Pumpkins :: Siamese Dream
  • Garden State Soundtrack
  • Barenaked Ladies :: Maroon (I don’t know why I just love this album)
  • Led Zeppelin :: Led Zeppelin IV

Any others that you think I missed?


This is How You Remind Me – Someday

Remember “How You Remind Me of Someday”? The Nickelback mashup with Someday on one channel and How You Remind Me on the other? NPR has an interesting interview with the creator.

Can’t get enough? Here’s How You Remind Me of Someday.mp3.


I Heart the Ladies

BNL in CalgaryAs promised here is my review from the BNL concert on April 1st in Calgary. It was great! As we were getting seated Anna questioned me about the tickets I purchased, “Do people that sit in these seats really get more nosebleeds?” Very funny. :)

The concert itself was a blast. Jason Plumb and Ron Sexsmith were the two opening acts. They seem like unknowns to me but Anna recognized Ron Sexsmith’s name and apparently Jason Plumb played for the Waltons — which I vaguely recall.

Anyway it was a great concert in which almost every song they played seemed like my favorite. I know I’m a big geek for this Canadian band, but whatever – it was fun. They played:

  • Maybe Katie
  • Too Little Too Late
  • Enid
  • Some Adlibing
  • It’s All Been Done
  • Another Postcard
  • Celebrity
  • More Adlib
  • Never Is Enough
  • I Live With It Every Day
  • Roadrunner
  • For You
  • One Week
  • Upside Down
  • A Bass Solo
  • Alternative Girlfriend
  • Testing 1,2,3
  • Never Do Anything
  • Blame It On Me
  • Shopping
  • Concert Going
  • Pinch Me
  • War On Drugs
  • Beat The Crew
  • Shoe Box
  • Old Apartment
  • Brian Wilson
  • Rio
  • If I Had $1,000,000
  • What A Good Boy

They weren’t planning on playing Alternative Girlfriend but got talked into it when someone in the audience held up a big sign that said quote/unquote Please let my husband drum Alternative Girlfriend with you. So they did. Ed told the audience that if he was at least half decent we should really cheer him on, but that if he sucked then we should beat him to a pulp. He was actually pretty good and it was really fun to watch. It’s stuff like that that makes a concert so memorable.

They had a fun choreographed shopping cart ballet in which they ran around with shopping carts, passed around boxes of cereal and made snow angels on the stage. They did three encore songs, which was more than the last time they were in Calgary, and I must say it was just a perfect concert.

BNL in Calgary

Ed wrote about the concert tour and specifically about Calgary’s show. Ed and Steve are by far my favorite bloggers in BNL – not just because they do the majority of the singing.

copyright Music

Grey Tuesday

I read the headlines about Grey Tuesday last week as it approached but I didn’t bother to read what it was all about. I thought it sounded boring.

So today I read all about it and I downloaded a couple of songs from DJ Danger Mouse’s Grey Album this afternoon. While I strongly believe in the principle of Grey Tuesday, that is to say that copyright law needs reform, I have to say the songs themselves didn’t bake my cake. I guess I’m just not into that indie rap stuff. Anyway I do hope the attention that the Grey Album is getting will bring about some common-sense changes to copyright law.

For those of you unfamiliar with the situation, let me catch you up to speed.

DJ Danger Mouse has taken audio tracks from Rapper Jay-Z’s Black Album and remixed them with music from the Beatles White Album. The new album is cleverly titled The Grey Album.

Enter EMI and copyright lawyers. They claimed that he had not asked permission or paid for the rights to use The Beatles music and demanded that he stop selling his record. The DJ agreed to comply with the order and is no longer distributing the record, which was allegedly only intended for the ears of friends.

But the story doesn’t end there. In issuing the order, EMI has unwittingly thrust The Grey Album into the public spotlight, prompting guerilla music lovers to post MP3s on their websites and blogs specifically on, but not limited to, Tuesday February 24th. Considering that only 3,000 copies of The Gray Album were pressed and the fact that it has been banned pretty much guarantees a Holy Grail status among hip-hop fans and serious music collectors alike.

“Grey Tuesday” Civil Disobedience Planned February 24th Against Copyright Cartel

In protest of EMI’s action approximately 170 sites hosted a full copy of the Grey Album on Tuesday, in spite of the fact that many of those sites had received cease and desist letters from EMI’s lawyers.

So how successful did Grey Tuesday turn out to be?

“After a survey of the sites that hosted files during Grey Tuesday, and an analysis of filesharing activity on that day, we can confidently report that the Grey Album was the number one album in the US on February 24 by a large margin. Danger Mouse moved more “units” than Norah Jones and Kanye West, with well over 100,000 copies downloaded. That’s more than 1 million digital tracks.”

I think that’s pretty cool.


Maid Queen Vs. May Queen

A couple have people have written the same basic message:

Just to let you know the correct lyric [in Stairway to Heaven] is ‘just a spring clean for the maid queen’ not may queen.

Actually folks, it is may queen, but if you looked up the lyrics before emailing me, you’d already know that. What is a maid queen anyway? I bet if I had one my house would be spotless.