||[Friday 30th June 2006 at 8:36 pm]
Music is a powerful art form. It has the ability to take the mind to different places, to unite cultures and people, to soothe and relax.
Recently when listening to my music collection I've been thinking about how different tracks remind me, sometimes very strongly, of various places that I've been to. One track reminds me of my first job. Another reminds me of bus journeys to school. Still more evoke strong memories of a night-time trip across the downs.
In no case has that been the only place where I've listened to that track, or even where I've listened to it the most. By far the majority of compositions have only been heard at my computer, or have been part of my general collection on my MP3 player for so long that they have no specific location attached.
So with this, I give you all a meme to follow and spread. It's quite simple:
Post a few tracks of music which strongly remind you of somewhere, along with where and why.
And here's mine. Note that some of these are in tracker formats, and so you'll need something like XMPlay to listen to them.
- Populous: The Beginning soundtrack, by Mark Knight
pleaseremove and I once did a night-time journey across the top of the South Downs, as part of being the support car for a hike. After going through a few different pieces, we eventually stuck this soundtrack on shuffle and let it run. I've always liked this soundtrack - it's a good mix of ambient ethnic music for the game. pleaseremove described it as being very eerie, which is pretty accurate. It's up for free download by the composer, and is well recommended if you like ambient/game music.
- Lore, by Warder
For some reason, this reminds me of the coach journey to school when I was nearing the end of my time at secondary school. As to why, I can only assume it's because this one was on my MP3 player for quite a while then, and I listened to it a lot on the journey. It's also quite long (about 8 minutes when looped once). It only reminds me of that time, but that's probably because Arriva played musical buses for a few years before they scrapped the route and then I changed route and operator three times in the last two years.
- MorningStar FF2000 (MP3 version), by Moozeblaster
While it's classed as techno, don't let that put you off. Believe it or not, there actually exists *good* techno music. You just have to look harder to find it.
Anyway, this piece reminds me of my first job. I can only guess it's because I brought in a CD of random tracks, including this, and listened to it there. The memory is still strong after over 4 years. I can visualise the office I ended up with, along with the morning view from the window in a crisp October, a light mist on the grass. Great place, and great people.
- Not Like the Other Girls, by The Rasmus (on the Dead Letters album)
Picture, if you will, a small village station. Dark clouds overhead, and rain pouring down. An announcement has just come over the PA, and the train from London Victoria has been delayed by another twenty minutes. The passengers are huddled in the small shalter, waiting for the train to arrive. And one person stands alone, halfway along the platform, oblivious to the rain, listening to sounds only he can hear...
While making that list, I've noticed that all of them are ones that I've only listened to when out and about since getting my MP3 player. It's one of those devices that I now routinely take and listen to everywhere. Some tracks are very suited to certain places, as seen above - Populous when driving across the Downs at night, New Forest when wandering the Downs on foot during the day. Not Like the Other Girls seemed a perfect track when standing at that cold wet station, and as said I ignored the small shelter and happily stood out there in the rain. Lost in the music, I didn't notice the falling rain, and ignored the announcement about delays.
At other times I want to listen to something with a bit more power, and there's not that many which fall into that category. Bring Me to Life by Evanescence is one of those which fits. There's also a few by Stratovarius which fall into that category. Sometimes I'll prefer something more classical, and the instrumental Under the Stars from the Lion King soundtrack works very well. It starts off very quietly, with a simple theme as the group muse about the stars. Near the end of the track, as Simba chases after Rafiki, it throws itself into a strong precussive mix that's full of depth and is begging for more power from the speakers.
Occassionally I'll just hop through at random, taking what comes as it comes. There's a few tracks in my collection that I've never listened to, and may never do so. Others I'll go out of my way to listen to over and over again. And a few ambient tracks I'll stick on loop and still be listening to them a few hours later.
Such is the world of a music lover.