from aesop to zomby

Yesterday I finished listening to every album I own, in alphabetical order. I started in January.

This is not as ridiculous as it first sounds. I have a relatively small music collection – about 300 albums – and I allowed myself to listen to DJ sets and things from SoundCloud and Thisismyjam besides. But no changing the order and no listening to new albums until the 300 were finished.

This did lead to some pretty ludicrous moments, like when I went through the complete Bruckner symphonies in order, and then did the same for Mahler a month or two later. Woooosh. A lot of sauerkraut, as a friend of mine would say.

I did this for a few reasons. One, why keep such music around if I don’t listen to it? Two, maybe I could delete some of it that I no longer liked! Three, maybe I’d discover a few things that I had forgotten. Four, given the rate at which art is produced, stopping to review seemed wise.

I didn’t delete anything, of course. I discovered that Hello Nasty is a much better album than I thought it was when I was 16. I discovered that Bartok’s string quartets are better than I thought they were last year. I discovered that 90’s trance kickdrums have not aged well. I discovered that my rip of Graceland has clicks in it, and that old Prefuse 73 is really good.

Did I make any deep connections with things? No. One more listen wasn’t going to make me fall in love with anything I wasn’t already in love with. In that respect, the better solution would be to spend a month listening to only one album, in order to really wrap your mind around it. That will come later though.