Articles by Mark Zip

Mark Zip Poop 2022

Chat GPT promt: Write a “Best of 2022” List with commentary in the style of (with errors struck through and corrections in red) listing the following music albums:
Alvvays, Yard Act, Kae Tempest, Fontaines D.C., Vieux Farka Touré & Khruangbin, Arctic Monkeys, Horace Andy, Black Country, New Road, Rachika Nayar, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Nova Twins, Diplo, Chase & Status, Shygirl, Nia Archives, Elvis Costello & The Imposters, Jockstrap

Mark Zip Poop 2021

Black Country New Road, Elvis Costello, Mdou Moctar, Sleaford Mods, Saint Etienne, Toumani Diabaté & London Symphony Orchestra, Madlib w/ Four Tet, Kiwi Jr., black midi, Susana Baca

PoOP 2021 – Omicron Edition – Call for entries

Neither snow nor rain nor gloom of night nor frickin’ COVID shall stay the couriers of POmposity and OPinionation from the swift completion of their appointed ruminations. Although, admittedly, last year’s turnout was a wee thinner than usual, the POOP goes on. Please feel free to share this invitation with anyone who might make a contribution to the POOP effort

Jim Meyers Poop 2020

I’m just going to skip this part. All things must pass. — — — — Pernice Brothers, The Beths, Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit-Reunions, Fiona Apple, Pup, Dogleg, Fontaines DC, Districts, Jeff Rosenstock, Brian Fallon

Mark Zip Poop 2019

V.A – “Nigeria 70: No Wahala: Highlife, Afro-Funk & Juju 1973-1987” Nick Cave – “Ghosteen” (What’s next after complete heartbreak?) Billie Eilish – “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go” (Disruptive, freakish, ASMR, a new sound) Amyl and the Sniffers – “Amyl and the Sniffers” (Snotty rock n roll should never die) Sleaford Mods – “Eton Alive” Angel Olsen – “All Mirrors” Chemical Brothers – “No Geography” FKA Twigs – “Magdalene” Underworld – “DRIFT Series 1” (A song/video every week for a year? Sure, why not?) Chase n Status – “RTRN II JUNGLE” Vampire Weekend – “Father of…

John Stewart Poop 2018

What else can be said that hasn’t been said already. This is the first best of post-print. I guess we can blame the millennial’s for the print edition of Poop dying. Heck we have blamed them for everything else. As far as I am concerned its tough to accept things are changing. Somehow Lil Pump’s “Gucci Gang” is given a good review in Pitchfork. Does anyone really think Ariana Grande is good at all? I am sure some like her, but I am not afraid to say I don’t like pop music. Does anyone think Queen could gain traction today? Most likely not.

Barack Obama Poop 2017

During my presidency, I started a tradition of sharing my reading lists and playlists. It was a nice way to reflect on the works that resonated with me and lift up authors and artists from around the world. With some extra time on my hands this year to catch up, I wanted to share the books and music that I enjoyed most. From songs that got me moving to stories that inspired me, here’s my 2017 list — I hope you enjoy it and have a happy and healthy New Year.

Eric Fine Poop 2017

Wow – interesting year, huh? No need to go down that rabbit hole, but I can say how depressing the music was this year. Not that I didn’t find a few gems, but those albums that I did enjoy were sadder than the usual stuff I gravitate towards. Sign of the times, anyone?

PoOP 2017 – Call for submissions

To the POmpous and OPinionated: You POOPin this year? If you’re getting one of these for the first time, POOP is our annual exercise in self-importance wherein we compile “Best Of 2017′ lists, to be published in a quaint ol’ print edition as well as online. This year will be our 31st annual exercise in swillification. A refresher about the rules and deadlines is in order: Limit yourself to what would be 2 sides of 8×11 paper. Leave a slight margin so your swill does not get lost in the binding of the hard copy. Any layout format that works…

Mark Zip Poop 2016

ANOHNI – Avalanches – Billy Bragg + Joe Henry – Kano – Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds – Robbie Fulks – Roisin Murphy – Solange – Sturgill Simpson – Swet Shop Boys – Annie Mac

Tom Whalen Poop 2016

Albums 1. Kanye West, The Life of Pablo 2. Kvelertak, Nattesferd 3. Car Seat Headrest, Teens of Denial 4. Nails, You Will Never Be One of Us 5. Danny Brown, Atrocity Exhibition 6. The Avalanches, Wildflower 7. Heron Oblivion, Heron Oblivion 8. Bon Iver, 22, A Million 9. The Julie Ruin, Hit Reset 10. Metallica, Hardwired… To Self-Destruct Apologies: Angel Olsen, My Woman;     Nicolas Jaar, Sirens;     Mean Jeans, Tight New Dimension;     Preoccupations, Preoccupations;     Diarrhea Planet, Turn to Gold It’s good that we got life-affirming, politically charged music this year–we needed it. This is the uncynical take….

Mark Zip Poop 2015

Acre – Bjork – CHVRCHES – Courtney Barnett – Florence + Machine – Grimes – Holly Herndon – Jamie – Jlin – Mbongwana Star – Paul Heaton & Jacqui Abbott – Roots Manuva – Rustie – Sleaford Mods – Sleater-Kinney – Young Fathers

How Signing a Major Record Deal Nearly Destroyed My Music Career

Terra Patrick has a fascinating story at Digital Music News laying out the details of how she used her authenticity to build a following on YouTube and then watched the label wreck it… … the mandate that came from my team at the label. They needed me to be “less accessible” and more untouchable. All these kids on YouTube saw me as an equal, as “one of them” – did I want to be a YouTube star, or did I want to be a rock star? They threw down the gauntlet, and there was no question in my mind. I…

How to illustrate music and process – The NYT and Disney

Accompanying an otherwise rote Jon Pareles piece about how Diplo and Skrillex made a hit with Justin Bieber, is a remarkable video. Alongside interview snippets of the three artists run graphics of the various sounds. The graphics change as the sounds change and as the track is explained and built over the course of the video. It’s a great example of using a visual medium to explicate audio. I can’t embed it here, so click this link to see it: (It’s also amazing to catch glimpses of Skrillex manipulating Ableton on his laptop. The speed and deftness the result…

What does it mean when a “traditional” record store “sells” downloads?

Yesterday I was pottering around FYE in Kingston scanning the “New Releases” display and came across the above (click the image to see it blown up). It’s a slim-line CD case with a folded piece of paper in it. There is no disc in the box and no barcode on the card. The front of the card has the (obscured) full title of the album and Earl Sweatshirt’s name on it. The back has a basic tracklist, copyright information and little else. I asked the manager what it all meant. No artwork, no disc, no barcode. She explained that the…

Genetic Data Tools Reveal How Pop Music Evolved In The US

In modern societies, cultural change seems ceaseless. The flux of fashion is especially obvious for popular music. While much has been written about the origin and evolution of pop, most claims about its history are anecdotal rather than scientific in nature. To rectify this we investigate the US Billboard Hot 100 between 1960 and 2010. Using Music Information Retrieval (MIR) and text-mining tools we analyse the musical properties of ~17,000 recordings that appeared in the charts and demonstrate quantitative trends in their harmonic and timbral properties. We then use these properties to produce an audio-based classification of musical styles and…

“Peak Personality Pop (2015 Edition)” OR “Has Diplo Finally Jumped the Shark?”

“Older” Superstar Singer? – Check “Younger” Superstar Singer/Rapper? – Check Superstar Producer with some remaining street cred? – Check Self-referential title? – Check Easily chanted chorus? – Check Filterd synth climbs? – Check Serrated noises guaranteed to annoy anyone who “remembers real music”? – Check “Chopped and Screwed” references? – Check BDSM Artwork? – Check Bonus stupid/smart lyric: “I poured a beer into my shoe and got my freak on” Bonus pedestrian lyric: “The neighbor’s pissed and says he’s gonna cal the five-oh”

Duncan Clark Poop 2014

    Buy New or Used via Amazon           Rent via iTunes [?] 1. BECK – Morning Phase: I only own two cd’s by Beck- the two morose folky albums which I guess says a lot about me. That said, this is a beautifully constructed and recorded song cycle.     Buy New or Used via Amazon           Rent via iTunes [?] 2. THE WAR ON DRUGS – Lost in the Dream: This was drugs for the ears. I kept hearing bits and pieces that just wormed their way into my brain. I love…

Jim Meyers Poop 2014

The Events The biggest musical event of my year was The Boston Calling music festival. I’ve avoided festivals for the last 20 years or so and approached this with some trepidation, fearing a sweaty mass of humanity and my hysteria level of claustrophobia. The Replacements though, I had to go. My fears were assuaged immediately upon entering the beautiful and comfortable brick and concrete park smack in the middle of downtown Boston. Neutral Milk Hotel were great but a bit pretentious. As I expected. The Hold Steady had the unenviable task of playing under a searing sun and a heat…