Curating The Week: Jaron Lanier On A.I., Re-Listening, Bagpipe Cover Songs

Essential reading on A.I. by Jaron Lanier.

“The new programs mash up work done by human minds. What’s innovative is that the mashup process has become guided and constrained, so that the results are usable and often striking. This is a significant achievement and worth celebrating—but it can be thought of as illuminating previously hidden concordances between human creations, rather than as the invention of a new mind.

Whatever the reason, the Web was made to remember everything while forgetting its context.”

What I’m re-listening to. As my Brett’s Sound Picks show, I listen to new (and un-mainstream) music each week, amazed by its beauty, inventiveness, and levels of detail. But I also re-listen to musics that have proven their affective power over time. The urge to re-listen to a music signals that there’s something there worth returning to. Recently I re-listened to Barker, whose 2019 recording Utility is masterfully rhythmic yet without beats.

I also re-listened to Pole, whose 2008 recording Pole 3 makes a minimal, dub-esque sound that is all echo and sub. This music is expert at creating space for listeners to fill in. Also, the music works well at a volume so low I can barely hear it.

• A video about bagpipe cover songs.

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