Here’s the fact of the matter: Four and a half years ago, I packed up the vast majority of my CDs when I moved from Virginia to Ohio, and I never unpacked them. Before I packed the CDs away, I ripped about 1200 tracks off them onto my computer and also stuffed them into my (then state of the art) Creative Nomad Jukebox, comprising basically my own personal radio station, so I was not generally lacking in terms of the stuff I wanted hear, and aside from that I went about accreting additional CDs at the rate of several a week, and then later abandoned CDs altogether to buy everything online through iTunes, eMusic and Allofmp3.com, or to stream it off of Rhapsody. By and large unpacking those CDs was unnecessary: One way or another almost everything I wanted to hear got to my ear without having to crack open the boxes.
Note, however, that I said almost. Some material stayed stubbornly out of my grasp — which is to say, was right in my basement if I had bothered to root through some boxes, but I wasn’t, so it might as well have been on the dark side of the moon. Among them was Wrong Way Up, a one-off album from Brian Eno and John Cale, which has two of my favorite early 90s tracks on it: "Lay My Love" and "Spinning Away." For whatever reason I didn’t burn either of those two tracks before I cartoned up my CDs, so I haven’t heard either track since at least early 2001. I really love those tracks, and would occasionally almost rouse myself to open up the CD boxes to find the CD. But then I would think do I really want to go through all that effort for just two songs? And them once again I would slump into feculent slothery, listening to the little voice in my head that said patience, sloth Jedi. Sooner or later they will come to you.
And so they have: Rykodisc recently re-released Wrong Way Up, which means the album is now available on eMusic and Rhapsody both: I streamed it off the latter while I was downloading it from the former. Once again my interminable immobility has paid off in spades. Excellent.
To be honest, at this point, I really have to work to find a band whose output is so obscure that I can’t find it anymore. Right now, on Rhapsody, I’m listening to Falling Joys, a favorite of mine in my senior year of college. These guys were an Australian band who barely made a ripple out of Oz, and yet now I have access to their entire corpus right here online. The Blue Aeroplanes? Check. Kitchens of Distinction? Check. Tanita Tikaram? Check, baby, check. I can stump the online world by pulling out bands like The Katydids, Martha’s Vineyard and the Monochrome Set right out of my ass, but I bet by this time next year I’ll be able to find even these hopelessly deader-than-Marley’s-ghost bands. At which time Krissy will finally put her foot down and demand I get rid of all those damned boxes. And I suppose she’ll be right to do it.
In the meantime: Wrong Way Up. Solid.