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Are newcomers buying CD's?


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I've been wondering this a while now. I remember when in 08' I started listening to goatrance a lot. Suddenly I also found satisfaction and interest in buying CD's. Back then there was no bandcamp, spotify or most tracks on youtube. Of course you could always torrent the music, but there were no digital formats that I personally felt were worth it. I started buying CD's from those releases I enjoyed the most. Obviously this eventually led me to the alice in wonderland moment of finding discogs and seeing all these amazing old releases on physical formats.

Now that we have a lot of labels re-releasing tracks digitally in all platforms, does this actually affect the buying habits of new fans? Do new fans and enthusiasts even care for owning these sonic masterpieces on physical formats?

I personally have special this feeling of ownership with the physical releases, it's just not the same when you stream the music. However when I hit a critical mass of releases (in my opinion) I started buying a lot less.

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i to have been wondering this, seems the industry felt this in other genres so they recreated the vinyl format, which is now in saturation, seems evident with the staggering prices of this format, the bubble will soon burst, discogs is gone for me, because of the prices, fees and astronomical postage prices, so i now only buy within australia, which is limited, personally i don't buy much goa as no longer like the current sound, and ones i might, no longer offer physical format, i don't stream use bluetooth or any of that as don't embrace this technology that provides it, old school all the way, in this brave new world we are a dying breed pardon the pun

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I didn't care for or see the point in physical releases when I first got into this. Proxeeus - Non Euclidean Geometry was my first cd purchase. Got it for the pretty design. Since then I've bought only the releases that I feel are a little extra special. Median project constellations, Elysium live and beyond, triquetra etc.

Still don't have a cd player. They just sit around. But after the first physical purchase it seemed to open a little flood gate.

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I never was a big fan of digital releases. I see their purpose and it's fine that they exist, but I really want something physical.

For me it was like this from day 1. We had these p2p sharing softwares back then, everybody could have mp3 (or whatever format), it did not mean anything to have an mp3 - but when I made the effort and invest my then spare money into a physical CD, that meant that I REALLY liked that release or that artist.

Now the p2p stuff is long gone, but the attitude stayed the same. Digital a release is and always was too "easy" for me to be able to fully appreciate it - the digital stuff I consume in a multi-tasking-environment, I mostly do something alongside: play games, check news, read psynews. I actually get distracted a lot when listening to digital releases (I only listen to them on PC, I have no network audio player).
When it's physical and I listen to it on my CD player, I can only do that, with proper focus - the CD player doesn't do news sites or psynews alongside...

My brain is anchored that way - "digital is inferior". It won't change anymore. Which is why I also wrote to Iboga Records recently if they can do me a physical copy of Bakkelite v3.0 ... but unfortunately they ignore me :P
 

 

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It's been a long time since I bought a CD.

I listen music on platforms and this is my "Alice in wonderland effect" as said before. So much music available on them, you can never stop exploring, you only have to know where to start (and for this matter Psynews is the unbeatable prescriber).

Other reason is that my GF can't stand psytrance so I'm used to listen to it at work or in transportation. And I have unfortunately lost my discman.

Note that I don't know precisely how artists are remunerated through these platforms...

And I am not convinced by the audio quality argument of CD or vinyl... maybe I am wrong.

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Do I think newcomers to this scene buy CD's? My instinct would tell me no, but as Anoebis has shared info regarding their sales of said format, it seems atleast the Goa fans might still be supporters of the format. I do however not have sufficient data to reach a broader conclusion, since we don't know the exact age-span of the buyers of this format within the Goa genre.

However there is a big 90's nostalgia trend among the "TikTok-generation", despite not having grown up in that decade. 90's Hip Hop, Grunge etc album artwork and fashion beeing among those retro things that has emerged as popular within that generation. So I could definitely see the 90's Goa artwork and CD's getting somekind of retro vibe trend going in the future perhaps. That beeing said, Goa Trance is a much more niche-genre overall. With not as great commercial exposure as the other genres of the 90's. Things come and go, and the popularity of this genre could in theory, once again reach the popularity it once enjoyed in the 90's at its peak. The odds aren't the best for that to happen, but it can't be ruled out. What has happened once can happen again, albeit oftentimes in a slightly different shape or form. Like the whole Synthwave/80's nostalgia phenomena we now see across a broad portion of the movie and popular music spectrum.

I think one aspect to take into consideration today, is that the latest model of Pioneer's CDJ-series, the CDJ-3000. Despite its name still containing "CD" in it has omitted the CD-player completely. So in the long run, it is highly likely that the CD format will be phased out as a means for DJ's to play their music. Which in effect makes it a legacy format. I do think there are pros and cons with this format of course like anything else, for me it's mostly a sentimental value attached to it. Since it was a big part of my childhood and I used to have a collector's mindset. However I feel more free by not having the constant OCD (no pun intended) ;) that the hunting for CD's gave me. I become so obsessed that if a CD had the slightest imperfection I had to get an extra copy and so on. The same thing with the Blu-ray Disc format for movies, which became another type of addiction/collecting mania.

So yeah I certainly embrace the digital streaming era, it gives me a Zen-moment without all the stuff occupying space at home, less is more for sure. What I do miss sometimes is looking at the artwork in person, but discogs fills that itch somewhat. And besides the artwork for the CD format was a tad bit too smalI to fully enjoy all the details anyways. The vinyl format certainly made more sense in that regard. I embrace new technology and I believe that in the future music could be enjoyed via streaming, but could also unlock some nice additional perks, if you supported the labels/artists on the digital platforms. For example I imagine some cool holographic artwork which projects in your home. Like a living moving/animated Dancing Galaxy. ;) Or some kind of trippy augmented VR-experience.

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I used to buy CDs, but I stopped around 2010. I realized that I was ripping all the CDs to FLAC as soon as they arrived, and then never really looking at the CDs or boxes again. The box art looks great, of course, but CDs also take up space and decay over time. Now I prefer to buy the FLACs directly off of Bandcamp. I would like to think that more money can go to the artist + label that way, since they don't have to ship me anything.

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On 10/1/2020 at 3:28 PM, kokanje said:

I used to buy CDs, but I stopped around 2010. I realized that I was ripping all the CDs to FLAC as soon as they arrived, and then never really looking at the CDs or boxes again. The box art looks great, of course, but CDs also take up space and decay over time. Now I prefer to buy the FLACs directly off of Bandcamp. I would like to think that more money can go to the artist + label that way, since they don't have to ship me anything.

Quite the same here, stopped a little bit later tho. I have/had at a high point ca. 600-700 CDs plus 100 vinyls or so. But from MANY genres, I also got some free promos when I was writing reviews for an online music magazine.

My 3 main reasons not buying CDs anymore: a) My income has lowered b) I have not found so much newer music I would buy at all c) re-selling CDs is "quite" difficult esp. for unknown artists.

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In general I think cd is as good as dead. Most of my friends don't even have a cd player anymore because it's simply not included in most devices. So you need to specifically invest in a cd player and I think for most casual listeners that's a bridge too far. 

So from that perspective it seems only really engaged people and collectors will buy cd's. But that's where the strength of a platform like bandcamp comes in, it offers you everything as a customer.

Personally I still buy cd's but I'm also gradually transitioning to complete digital which has been quite an adventure. Over the past couple of years I've moved away from itunes (what a bad decision to use it in the first place, I know...), bought an amp with wifi for the living room, got a NAS, installed a plex media server on it and can now listen to my entire collection from any of my devices anywhere I want. I also got a traktor controller and started using traktor at home after years of resisting it because djíng with cd's was somehow 'better' in my opinion (which it isn't and to all the people bitching about how a controller makes stuff easier and requires much less skill I would say try it out. You'll be amazed at the control and versatility it gives you while having your entire collection at the click of your mouse).

So the future for sure is digital streaming, most people won't even bother to have the music files somewhere locally because it's much easier to listen to it on spotify, youtube, tidal, bandcamp, etc... 

 

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On 10/4/2020 at 10:59 AM, IronSun said:

In general I think cd is as good as dead. Most of my friends don't even have a cd player anymore because it's simply not included in most devices. So you need to specifically invest in a cd player and I think for most casual listeners that's a bridge too far. 

So from that perspective it seems only really engaged people and collectors will buy cd's. 

Agreed - this may also be one of the reasons modern production suck, not only in Electronic but also in Metal. 95-96% of listeners will not hear much difference anyway, when they use shitty headphones,bad car stereo and also not very hifi systems at home. So why would "engineers" still care much...only the musicians itself mostly want their music good produced, but seems confused themselves that overcompressing, clipping and mixes with too much high (mid-high end in modern Metal is way to prevelant compared to the more grave sounding stuff of older days, drums sounding programmed not played etc.) is not  = good sound.

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On 10/4/2020 at 10:59 AM, IronSun said:

In general I think cd is as good as dead. Most of my friends don't even have a cd player anymore because it's simply not included in most devices. So you need to specifically invest in a cd player and I think for most casual listeners that's a bridge too far. 

So from that perspective it seems only really engaged people and collectors will buy cd's. But that's where the strength of a platform like bandcamp comes in, it offers you everything as a customer.

Personally I still buy cd's but I'm also gradually transitioning to complete digital which has been quite an adventure. Over the past couple of years I've moved away from itunes (what a bad decision to use it in the first place, I know...), bought an amp with wifi for the living room, got a NAS, installed a plex media server on it and can now listen to my entire collection from any of my devices anywhere I want. I also got a traktor controller and started using traktor at home after years of resisting it because djíng with cd's was somehow 'better' in my opinion (which it isn't and to all the people bitching about how a controller makes stuff easier and requires much less skill I would say try it out. You'll be amazed at the control and versatility it gives you while having your entire collection at the click of your mouse).

So the future for sure is digital streaming, most people won't even bother to have the music files somewhere locally because it's much easier to listen to it on spotify, youtube, tidal, bandcamp, etc... 

 

Agree, a good example beeing that I currently own no device with a CD player in it. I used to have a PS4 which had CD functionality. Even the laptops don't come with a built in CD player anymore. The upcoming PS5 will be available in two versions, one digital downloads/streaming only which will be like 100 euros cheaper. And a version with 4K bluray player/CD. I think it's quite obvious which version will sell best. The PS5 with the 4K bluray player is the equivalent to the optional bluray/dvd drive of the macbooks.

It's there for those who want it, but it will not be the preferred option for most users. And for the next itteration the Playstation console in ten years or so from now, I can totally see how a disc drive will be ommited completely as an option.

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