Friday, April 10, 2009

Easter track smackdown: Round three - Mohobishopi

[Follow the Easter Track Smackdown tag for all the pieces to date]

With Amazon holding onto a slim lead over Last FM, we reach round three of this weekend's battle to prove, sort-of-conclusively, which of the various online music services are, by some measure, "the best".

The third challenge is MoHoBishOpi's Names For Nameless Things. Coming out of Wales in 1996, briefly the Mos - or were they the Bishes? - were forced to trade under the weight of the NME's next big thing label. Although only for a couple of weeks. They were brilliant live, but there's no way you can say that without making it sound like the faintest of praise; they managed a handful of singles and a single album before falling apart in 2002.

But: does their spirit live on online? Or has their clumsy punctuation doomed them to hide from the faithful forever? Let's see:

The name, punctuated or not, fails to generate a response. The song title fails to generate a response. Spotify, you were meant to be the future of music: you're looking like an empty ship right now. Zero, again.

Last FM:
Using asterisks rather than dashes, Last FM turns up the band, but Names For Nameless Things isn't part of the music on offer. There are two full tracks, though, so two bonus points for a good try.

Scratches its digital head faced with the band name, and suggests trying a "power search". Which fails to find Names For Nameless Things, and suggests trying another "power search". No points.

What? Don't worry about what you're looking for - we've got digital versions of Black Sabbath. And Kings Of Leon. Will that do?

No points.

The search engine starts off by guessing that you're looking for experts in matters Islamic before falling quiet and offering a Sweeping The Nation playlist which features the clip for Hear The Air, but more importantly has this:

The Popguns from Brighton, doing Waiting For The Winter - and, as if to crystalize the 1980s indieness of it all, it's taped from Yorkshire TV's legendary Transmission programme.

So, YouTube offers a couple of tracks by the band, but scores zero, while Sweeping The Nation gets half a point for having The Popguns. If you don't like the way the scoring is working, complain to Ben Goldacre.

Their search engine reveals there are no downloads on offer, but does point towards some physical records you can buy. Which is fine, and does include a second-hand copy of Names For Nameless Things for a penny, but isn't instantaneous, is it? No marks.

Unhelpfully, when looking for the track name, suggests that I might want to watch a video exploring if the Harry Potter books are any good. Zero.

The rotten search engine spits back when asked for MoHoBishOpi, and suggests that 'it don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing' is, somehow, a match for the song title. Man, their search needs help.

So, although we had a lovely swerve into the Popguns, the actual song we were looking for is beyond the fingers of digitalisation. Ten marks off for the internet as a whole.

After three rounds:

Amazon - 14
Last FM - 12
YouTube - 10
iTunes - 05
Imeem - 01
Sweeping The Nation - 0.5
We7 - 00
Spotify - 00
eMusic - -04
The Internet as a whole - -10

Three more rounds tomorrow, Sunday and Monday at roughly the same times as today's went live. Coming next: can Tim Berners Lee bring a showtune classic as rendered by the Dalek's foe into our living rooms?


Simon said...

Well, that's something of a turn-up.

Although on the other hand the link has revealed the sole online visual presence of Marie and Emmy-Kate's post-Kenickie band Rosita has recently been dragged offline, so not so good.

guessing anon from previous post said...

MoHoBishOpi?!? And Simon hit's it out the park! Never would have got that.

I like the scoring and I'm pretty sure that Goldacre would consider it more scientific than most of the nonsense he takes on.

I'm lost on this last cryptic clue though. Is it America: What Time Is Love?

selena gomez said...

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