You know how a lot of people really like vinyl records because they enjoy the ritual of album hunting in tiny, dusty record shops and are willing to pay extra for the tangibility of a beautifully-made artifact that properly celebrates the deep and lasting personal connection inherent to a work of art, such as a meticulously crafted and carefully sequenced full-length album, and how they revel in the time spent carefully cataloging, storing, and displaying their inventory as an intimate reflection on their unique taste, personality, and cache of cultural capital? Ahh, sounds dreamy and romantic, doesn’t it?
Well, wake the fuck up, motherfucker. Those people are idiots. What they should be doing is leasing some goddamn MP3s from a computer company and then storing them anonymously out in some California warehouse. And Google wants to be that California warehouse.
According to Billboard, the company announced last week that it’s finally upping the ante on its Google Play download store and online locker service. For starters, they finally managed to get a license for the Warner Music Group catalog (suck it, Neil Young; I’m downloading all your shit, dubbing it to cassette, ripping that cassette to CD, and then streaming that CD on Bandcamp!), nearly a year after the service first launched. But perhaps more awesomely, now that this last piece of the puzzle is in place, they are finally add a song-match feature that’s competitive with Apple’s iTunes Music Match and whatever the hell Amazon calls theirs, whereby the service scans your catalog and automatically matches songs in Google’s library without the user having to upload songs to their Google Play locker manually. But perhaps EVEN MORE AWESOMELY, Google Play’s shit will be free (both Apple and Amazon charge $25 a year) for up to 20,000 songs.
Strangely, Google hasn’t really, you know, “announced” these significant upgrades to its service, and there are currently zero promotions up on the Google Play page about the whole Warner thing, but Zahavah Levine, director of content partnerships for Android and possible real-life android, claims that Google is “going to work with Warner in the next couple weeks to figure that out,” by which he presumably meant that once TMT broke the story, that’d be all the promotion they’d ever need. Either way, Google Play’s new shit will roll out in five European markets — UK, France, Italy, Germany, Spain — on November 13, and I predict that it’ll spread to other markets (like the US) as quickly and with as much alarming toxicity as the raging apocalyptic fires that’ll result when all the people of the world simultaneously and ceremoniously burn their hideous vinyl collections.
• Google Play: https://play.google.com
[Photo: Tsahi Levent-Levi]