First Impression: The Menzingers – After the Party

The Menzingers

This first impression was originally posted as a live blog for supporters in our forums on January 9th, 2017. First impressions are meant to be quick, fun, initial impressions on an album or release as I listen to it for the first time. It’s a running commentary written while listening to an album — not a review. More like a diary of thoughts. This post has been lightly edited for structure and flow.


I’m been embargoed on this sucker for what feels like forever and been aching to talk about it. And, with the last few weeks being a big move to get Chorus set up to work better with a version system (cleaning up my Git workflow and deployment) and working on a new Supporter Page (streamlining and creating a much better page for those that don’t wanna be a forum member to sign up), I’ve been itching to talk about music again. Always a needed distraction from some of the horrors going on basically everywhere else these days.

So, things are crossed off the ‘ol todolist and I’m ready to dive into what is sure to be a favorite of 2017.

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The Weeknd Again Tops the Charts

The Weeknd has returned to the top of the Billboard charts:

The Moana film soundtrack rises from No. 6 to No. 2 with 64,000 units (up 21 percent) and 44,000 in traditional album sales (up 37 percent — it is the best selling album of the week). It’s the only title in the top 10 to post a gain in either total units or sales, so, for the most part, albums with a small decline in units will rise up the list. That is typical for the first tracking week after the holiday shopping season and Christmas — when the chart adjusts to normal non-holiday business.

The ‘Keepin’ it 1600′ Guys Launch Crooked Media

The hosts of the popular podcast, Keepin’ it 1600, have left The Ringer and started their own media company, “Crooked Media.” Today they’ve launched their new podcast Pod Save America. The Daily Beast has more:

Just before Christmas, former Obama administration staffers Jon Favreau, Jon Lovett, and Tommy Vietor recorded what would become the final episode of their popular 2016 campaign podcast Keepin’ It 1600 for Bill Simmons’ The Ringer network. Today, they are back with a new podcast—Pod Save America—and this time it is under the banner of their new company, the pointedly titled Crooked Media.

Nielsen Has Released Their 2016 Music Year-End Report


Music consumption is at an all-time high. Overall volume is up 3% over 2016, fueled by a 76% increase in on-demand audio streams, enough to offset declines in sales and return a positive year for the business. Nearly 650 solo artists, groups and collaborators appeared on the Top 200 Song Consumption chart in 2016, representing over 1,200 different songs.

You have to use the blue download button to read the full thing, but a brief recap can be found on their press release page:

The biggest song of the year in terms of total activity (sales + audio streaming equivalents) was Drake’s “One Dance,” followed by “Closer” by Chainsmokers (feat. Halsey) and “Work” by Rihanna (feat. Drake). Topping the Digital Songs Sales charts this year were “Can’t Stop the Feeling!” by Justin Timberlake, “Closer” by The Chainsmokers (feat. Halsey) and “My House” by Flo Rida.

Ten Years Ago Today Steve Jobs Introduced the iPhone

Ten years ago today Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone. That’s still got to be one of the greatest product introductions of all time. The Telegraph put together a collection of reactions after the initial launch, I liked this one:

The problem here is that while Apple can play the fashion game as well as any company, there is no evidence that it can play it fast enough. These phones go in and out of style so fast that unless Apple has half a dozen variants in the pipeline, its phone, even if immediately successful, will be passé within 3 months.

There is no likelihood that Apple can be successful in a business this competitive.

I’ll admit that I didn’t understand what made the iPhone special or different from my BlackBerry until I used one for the first time. That’s when I knew it was going to be an absolute game changer.

Backchannel also has an interview with Apple executive Phil Schiller:

“That undervalues how earth-shattering the iPhone was when it first came to market, and we all first got them and fell in love with them,” he says. “iPhone made the idea of a smartphone real. It really was a computer in your pocket. The idea of real internet, real web browser, MultiTouch. There were so many things that are core to what is the smartphone today, that created a product that customers fell in love with, that then also demanded more stuff on them, more apps.”