Did you survive last night’s YouTube apocalypse? I have some theories about why YouTube went down.

A DDOS attack by North Korea.  
  One too many cat videos. Here’s my list of (wholly unscientific, completely baseless) possibilities
An unknown glitch with IPV6. Who cares?  
By 10:40 pm, YouTube had started to come back online. By 11:01, the crisis was over. The handle on the servers needed jiggling. “We’re working on resolving this and will let you know once fixed. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and will keep you updated.”
I’m sure they were. A 300 lb guy in his bedroom in New Jersey. PornHub was still up. A test of a zero-day exploit by Ernst Blofeld. Shortly after 9 pm EDT last night (October 16), YouTube videos stopped loading. “Go out and play, people!” it said. This was me when it happened. A quick check of Twitter showed that the outage was global and that people were losing their shit. A Carrington Event-style solar flare that only went after YouTube. A problem with this month’s Root Zone KSK Rollover. YouTube finally became sentient and decided enough was enough. Russian was testing a software hack that will be employed during the US midterm elections. It was, however, the longest YouTube outage in more than a decade. Meanwhile, YouTube assured everyone they were working on it. But what happened? Too many Canadians watching cooking with pot recipes.
I have some theories about why YouTube went down. Did you survive last night’s YouTube apocalypse?

What kind of music does one listen to when cutting up a Saudi journalist with a bone saw? (WARNING: This is very grisly.)

What kind of music does one listen to when cutting up a Saudi journalist with a bone saw? (WARNING: This is very grisly.)
Now we have this report from Middle East Eye. Horrendous screams were then heard by a witness downstairs, the source said. He advised other members of the squad to do the same. The implication is that this guy has done this sort of work before. One of their number is said to be a “forensics expert.”
According to multiple reports, Khashoggi, a US permanent resident, a reporter for the Washington Post, and an outspoken critic of the Saudi government was interrogated, tortured, and then cut up with a bone saw while he was still alive. Who does this sort of thing? A team of 15 Saudis were awaiting him. They had come to kill him,” the source told MEE. You should do [that] too,” Tubaigy was recorded as saying, the source told MEE. On October 1, he walked into the Saudi embassy in Istanbul to pick up some papers involving his upcoming wedding. It took seven minutes for Jamal Khashoggi to die, a Turkish source who has listened in full to an audio recording of the Saudi journalist’s last moments told Middle East Eye. As he started to dismember the body, Tubaigy put on earphones and listened to music. You have a playlist for this? Jeezus, dude. The screaming stopped when Khashoggi – who was last seen entering the Saudi consulate on 2 October – was injected with an as yet unknown substance. “When I do this job, I listen to music. Salah Muhammad al-Tubaigy, who has been identified as the head of forensic evidence in the Saudi general security department, was one of the 15-member squad who arrived in Ankara earlier that day on a private jet.   “The consul himself was taken out of the room. Tubaigy began to cut Khashoggi’s body up on a table in the study while he was still alive, the Turkish source said. The story of Jamal Khashoggi’s death keeps getting more and more horrible. He never came out. There was no attempt to interrogate him. The killing took seven minutes, the source said. It should have been a short visit, so he told his fiance to wait in the car. Khashoggi was dragged from the consul-general’s office at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul and onto the table of his study next door, the Turkish source said.

Rock My World Canada, Chapter 13: The Tragically Hip

Rock My World Canada, Chapter 13: The Tragically Hip
– AC]
The Tragically Hip, often referred to simply as The Hip, is a rock band from Kingston, Ontario, consisting of lead singer Gord Downie, guitarist Paul Langlois, guitarist Rob Baker (known as Bobby Baker until 1994), bassist Gord Sinclair and drummer Johnny Fay. Find out more about Gandharvas and hundreds of other Canadian artists in the softcover edition of Canadian Alternative & Indie Reference and Collector’s Guide. They have released 14 studio albums, two lie albums, 1 EP and 54 singles. This is the latest excerpt from his book. Downie died from his illness on October 17, 2017. Get your copy here.  
  Follow on Facebook and Twitter, too. They have received numbers Canadian music awards, including 16 Juno Awards. It’s an incredible discography of hundreds of bands. [Mike Carr has put together a massive volume on Canadian music history entitled Canadian Alternative & Indie Reference and Collector’s Guide. Following Downie’s diagnosis with terminal brain cancer in 2016, the band undertook a tour of Canada in support of their final album, Man Machine Poem. Nine of their albums have reached #1 in Canada.

Geeks and Beats podcast, episode 204: Courage (for Gord Downie)

Geeks and Beats podcast, episode 204: Courage (for Gord Downie)
Make us feel loved


  Listen now! Plus, Michael finds Alan the perfect Trekker t-shirt, and the entire newsroom gets a pink slip. But we still have our fixed costs. Michael insists this is our 200th episode, but as you can see from the above headline he can’t count. If you’d like to support the show (please?) go here. http://media.blubrry.com/geeksandbeats/p/www.geeksandbeats.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/S06E07-Courage-for-Gord-Downie.mp3
Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | Email | RSS
By the way, we’re a total non-profit operation that performs this selfless service for benefit of all humanity. However you want to number this podcast, it arrives on the one year anniversary of the death of Gord Downie. Hip historian and author Michael Barclay joined us mid-book tour to talk about the last year of Downie’s life, the band’s place in music history, and why they ran the business like no other in the music business.

Today is the first anniversary of the death of Gord Downie. There are plenty of things to report.

Choir! Choir! Glioblastoma (GBM for short) is a horrible disease. By 9, the whole country had been plunged into mourning. With today being the first anniversary of Gord’s death, there are plenty of stories. Like many Canadians, I was a big fan. To paraphrase Hip lyrics, it was going to get exciting, but certainly wasn’t fair. That is what he was: a rock star and lead singer of a famous rock band. Behind the scenes with Gord Downie’s doctor
The Globe and Mail has this story today. That doesn’t mean his illness was any more special or sad than any other patient at the Toronto cancer centre where I work, but I understood that this would be a journey unlike any other. Keep reading. Medical tourism and chasing rainbows can take precious time away from your purpose. Here are a couple. The shocking news understandably saddened many of his fans. Choir! Forbes on Gord’s sense of purpose
Gord Downie passed away a year ago on October 17, 2017. salute
Last Thursday (October 11), Toronto’s Choir! performed a hooray-for-pot-legalization event sponsored by Up Cannabis, the company in which The Tragically Hip have an investment interest. As the lead singer of arguably Canada’s most prolific band—the Tragically Hip—I suspect their sorrow was aligned more with Downie’s original purpose: rock star. Gord Downie understood this and was remarkably content from the start. It was just after 8 am EDT on the morning of October 17, 2017, that news of Gord Downie’s death started coming out. He believed in Canada, and knew that he would receive the best possible treatment in the world. And he performed that role—his original purpose—so incredibly well. In March, 2016, he was a mess. No one who has it can escape its grasp, even if you are a Kennedy, a Biden or a McCain. When Downie received the news about terminal brain cancer, I often think he used the opportunity to double down on his quest to live a life of higher purpose. Keep reading. A neurosurgeon from Kingston wrote to me in Toronto, looking for help: “I have a new patient referral. Rob Baker and Johnny Fay joined the group for songs like this. Choir! It began with a routine e-mail. After all, between the mid-1980’s and up until the May 2016 announcement of the rare form of cancer that he possessed—glioblastoma multiforme, the same type of brain cancer that took the lives of John McCain and Beau Biden—most people would associate Downie with the Tragically Hip. 51 year old male post temporal lobectomy for GBM resected in Kingston … name is Gord Downie.”
“Tragically Hip, or a coincidence?” I wrote back, and seconds later learned the awful truth. Choir!
There are plenty of things to report. Today is the first anniversary of the death of Gord Downie.

Why does vinyl continue to be so popular in the digital age? Here are some explanations

Here are some explanations Why does vinyl continue to be so popular in the digital age?
Have you thought to ask why you’ve become besotted with records again? The notion that music in its tangible, ‘organic’ form has more value than its digital counterpart is one contemporary reason for this romantic idealism.”
Barnes continues, reflecting on the historical aspects of vinyl collecting culture, “Way before the digital age was upon us, vinyl still carried that mystique and became a collectible medium. Forbes caught up with music writer Marcus Barnes and asked him to explain why vinyl continues to grow in popularity when so much of our other entertainment comes from the digital realm. Have you been caught up in the vinyl resurrection? From the days when everyone would gather around the wind-up gramophone to hear those exciting first crackles of a classical recording, to the era when one’s Hi-Fi system and record collection was the centerpiece of their living space. Barnes starts by explaining how the appeal of vinyl makes perfect sense even as the world trends towards purely digital means of cultural consumption, “There’s an air of romance that surrounds record collecting and the shops that curate, stockpile and sell vinyl. Today we still have a multitude of collectors hunting down rare pressings, eager to track down those elusive, mythical one-offs that are said to be out there.”
Read the whole article here.

The Foo Fighters brought up a 10-year-old kid onstage to play Metallica. The kid rocked it. Watch.

The Foo Fighters brought up a 10-year-old kid onstage to play Metallica. The kid rocked it. Watch.
The Foo Fighters are among those bands who like to pull someone out of the audience for a moment of glory during their shows. In Kansas City the other night, Dave Grohl brought up 10-year-old Collier Rule and asked if he could play an instrument. Is anyone else reminded of the time another young kid showed up on Star Search with Ed McMahon in 1992? Coller was given a guitar. Here’s what happened.

This one chart explains why so many heritage rock acts are still touring

Acts from the 60s, 70s, and 80s are still on the road many weeks a year. In the old days, a hit album would generated sales royalties for decades. Today, though, no one is buying albums and those royalty cheques continue to shrink dramatically. This one chart explains everything. Always follow the money. Shouldn’t they be retired by now? Read more at Quartz. Why are they still subjecting themselves to the rigours of touring? For example, in the pre-Napster era, each Doors album sold between one and two million albums every single year. The only way to make up for the lost revenue is to tour.
This one chart explains why so many heritage rock acts are still touring

What are the world’s most popular music genres?

What are the world’s most popular music genres?
At the top of the list was pop, which was cited as a number one preference by 64% of respondents. And although hip-hop has become an important cultural driver in the West, it’s still the fifth most-popular genre worldwide. The IFPI (International Federation of Phonographic Industries) recently took a survey of 19,000 consumers around the planet to see what sorts of music were the most popular. You will find more infographics at Statista Rock was a reasonably close second. Take a look at this graphic from Statista.

Random music news for Monday, October 15, 2018

This should be an interesting read: Read and Riot: A Pussy Riot Guide to Activism. Smash Mouth’s “All Star” musical: This is weird. Michael Buble says his son’s cancer scare has prompted him to quit music. Apple Music gets deeper into analytics with the purchase of this company. Maybe not. Fans of 80s music went nuts over this gig. The US Marines have developed a new sonic weapon that can transmit voice messages to people up to 3,000 feet away. Dammit. It’s just so hard to avoid him for October 15, 2018. Radio: Still not dead (and here’s a handy chart that underscores this…
…but Canada needs to respond faster to the changing digital landscape. Or is this retirement story all wrong? This one focuses on the 80s. Kanye news: Kim says she’s worried that his antics are damaging her reputation. Here’s a plea for Roxy Music to be recognized with an induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Yes. Prince’s estate to Donald Trump: “Cut it out.“
Another Bowie box set? WARNING: There may be Kanye music news ahead. Did Jamal Khashoggi’s Apple Watch record his arrest, torture, and murder…
…or is this lead doomed by a technical impossibility? I gotta get me some of these real-time translating headphones from Google.   A Soundgarden reunion without Chris Cornell? And more: Ye’s back on social media.
Random music news for Monday, October 15, 2018

New Music From The Inbox – Monday Edition! (Oct 15, 2018): SKRAECKOEDLAN, Mr. Koifish, TSVI, and more!

Not quite the kind of fire and brimstone you’d expect from a heavy Scandinavian group, but every bit as loud and impressive. You’d almost expect to see this tune performed on an electric drum kit, but the rudiments are so heavy that it could only be computer generated…right? Watch/Listen: 

Artist: Mr. The subtle acoustic guitar hidden amongst the forest of synths and percussion especially adds to the song’s effect – and before you know it, it’s gone. Koifish
Song: “Hang Our Coats”
Album/EP: Single

Even and shimmering indie pop with a decorum leaning partway between dispersed and minimalistic, “Hang Our Coats” is a deceptively bright tune despite the misleading sombreness in its vocoder vocals. Even the vocal register – you know the one, slightly nasally and high enough to belt for any voice range – fits the bill perfectly. Watch/Listen:  Elements of metal are present but take a backseat to the prodigal guitar displays, pulse-pounding drums, and grit. I’m posting them because stupid WordPress isn’t working for him. Watch/Listen: 

Artist: After the Calm
Song: “Stuck on Repeat”
Album/EP: Single

Good-old-fashioned mid-2000s-era heavy pop punk with a strong emo leaning, “Stuck on Repeat” will help fill that My Chemical Romance-size hole that previous generations of screamo left us. Watch/Listen: 

Artist: TSVI
Song: “Hossam”
Album/EP: Inner Worlds

Now this is interesting. A primarily percussive song with hardly a hint of traditional melody or songwriting structure, “Hossam” is all about pattern fluctuation, syncopation, and varying metre to produce an incredibly fascinating and compelling modern techno track. Anyone want to help out with these annoying ERROR_500s? – AC]

Hardcore heavy rock with a monumental, grandiose, gothic tone, this Swedish export feels oh so characteristically rugged and grim. [Mat Kahansky is back with more music recommendations.
Koifish, TSVI, and more! New Music From The Inbox – Monday Edition! (Oct 15, 2018): SKRAECKOEDLAN, Mr.

Spotify just turned 10. Its impact on music has been huge, both good and bad.

Well, it depends. It boasts nearly 200 million users a month, 86 million of whom are paying for the premium service. Or has it damaged music forever? [This was my weekly music column for GlobalNews.ca. -AC]
Oct.7, 2008, wasn’t the greatest time to release a disruptive new product. Keep reading. With a worldwide financial crisis getting worse by the day, a Swedish start-up called Spotify AB unveiled a new online platform that allowed instant access to a vast library of songs to subscribers in Sweden, the U.K., France, Spain and Norway. While Spotify wasn’t the first streaming service (Rhapsody, a spinoff of Real Networks, launched its product at the end of 2001), it has become the dominant force in the space with a reach extending through at least 65 countries. Everyone has access to at least 40 million songs. (All streaming services have access to the same universal catalogue.)
So has Spotify been a force for good?
Spotify just turned 10. Its impact on music has been huge, both good and bad.

Photos from Phil Collins’ “Not Dead Yet” performance in Toronto

And before you ask, yes, be played his dad’s famous drum fill on “In the Air Tonight” perfectly.   Very cool. His assignment? Benny Sanders and Mayerling Rivera. As the song progressed, the crowd was bathed in rainbow lights while being showered with streamers and confetti blasted from the stage. My foot is fucked,” he told the crowd), the audience was filled with admiration and respect.  

The mix from the sound engineer had the quality of a recording studio session with all fifteen musicians fully engaged. Collins’ “Not Dead Yet Live” concert commenced with a grateful thanks to the cheering crowd. For Collins, who has been performing for over 50 years, the applause exploded from fans as young as 8 to 88 years old. – AC]

Something was in the air tonight (sorry) at The Scotiabank Arena. Trombonist Luis Bonilla delighted the audience with a surprise solo on what we thought was the show closer. From the opening piano chords of “Against All Odds” to the final notes almost two hours later, the audience was as excited in the upper bleachers as they were at the front of the stage. Touching, really. Other highlights of the evening included Follow You Follow Me” that featured a video of the band’s history projected on the back screens as the crowd sang like a well-practiced choir. It was clear that when Phil Collins walked on that stage using a cane (“Sorry. [Andrei Chlytchkov was one against dispatched into the photo pit. As the tune concluded, Nic gave his dad a big hug before returning to the drums. This was the genius of Collins who had a full brass section, along with the band, including percussionist Richie Garcia (whose nickname “El Pulpo” means “The Octopus” in Spanish) and Phil’s 17-year-old son Nicholas Collins on drums. At one point all three performed a drum trio. The younger Collins sat directly behind his father for the song “You Know What I Mean” as it was a duet with Phil providing vocals and Nicholas on piano. Bring back some photos of Phil Collins in concert at the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto on October 11. We were then treated to an encore with the song “Take Me Home.”
One final thing: Collins reminded the audience that the first place that he sang lead for a Genesis concert was in London, Ontario. The women in the audience seemed to really like the younger Collins. We heard the best of Phil solo with the addition of a sampling of tunes by Genesis: “Another Day in Paradise”, “I Missed Again” and “You’ll Be in My Heart” (from the soundtrack of Tarzan) to “Throwing it All Away” and “Invisible Touch.” He also wove in the Stephen Bishop ballad “Separate Lives” as a duet with one of his background vocalists and “Easy Lover” with the entire quartet of backup singers. Text provided by L. At the beginning of “Sussudio” the entire fifteenth row sprung to its feet to dance, enticing the rest of the audience to follow.
Photos from Phil Collins’ “Not Dead Yet” performance in Toronto

Pressing my own vinyl record with Viryl Technologies

And not only are they improving on existing pressing technology, but they’re also moving things down the field with new innovations like the new upcoming HD-Vinyl technology that uses lasers for cutting the stampers used for pressing records. Viryl is building and shipping two to five of their record pressing units every month. Here’s the whole process.  
Here’s my creation. If you’re in the business of vinyl, it would be definitely worth your while to contact Viryl. Here’s one of the two mass-production machines Viryl has in operation which they call “WarmTone.” This one machine can press 7-inch and 12-inch singles as well as LPs. The vinyl resurrection, now in its 11th year, remains so strong that new companies are being created to feed the demand. Built in East Germany in 1971, it contains a crude computer that guides a cutter head as it digs the grooves into a master version of the record. By placing coloured pellets of vinyl on the puck before you press it, you can make a psych-y sort of pattern. While this is pretty old-school, an experienced operator can make up to 88 records an hour. It then squished the puck into a record using the metal stamped to create the grooves. A hunk of polyvinyl chloride goo called a puck is taken from an extractor (the machine on the left), and placed on the spindle in the press (the middle machine). Start by contacting Rob Manne at rob.manne@viryltech.com
  (They have a deal with Jack White’s Third Man Records, too.)
Earlier this month, I got a tour through their factory/manufacturing plant in Etobicoke where I get to press my own record. Once pressed, the record is placed in the trimmer (within the cage on the right) which gets rid of the jagged remnants around the record’s circumference. At any one time, they have $2.5 million inventory. Viryl Technologies of Toronto, which has been online for a couple of years now, is not only in the business of pressing records, but they’re also manufacturing new pressing equipment. That master is then used to create a metal stamper, which is a negative image of the record. The first thing on the tour was this old-school cutting machine. While most record pressing plants are using tried-and-true technology and equipment (some of it ancient), Viryl is one of two companies in the world designing and manufacturing this equipment. And business is booming. Here’s a look at Viryl’s factory floor.
Pressing my own vinyl record with Viryl Technologies