There was a feature to the ill-fated Zune music player created by Microsoft. It was that other Zune users could find each other by close proximity and turn each other on to music. Thus it would have been a great way for people to make commuter connections while riding a bus or subway. Unfortunately the Zune didn’t take off, and to my knowledge there isn’t a whole lot of people sharing music via meeting strangers.
Then again being that most of my travel involves driving in a car rather than via public transport, it’s not likely that I’d be wanting to attempt searching out music via other cars as I’m motoring past them. The clips would be awful short since I tend to have a lead foot when I drive. Though it probably wouldn’t be bad if it was the intro to most songs and if my iPhone could instantly tell me what that clip was if I was grabbed by that 5 to 10 seconds. Though in Los Angeles it would probably mean that I’d have about 10 song clips in less than 30 seconds – every 30 seconds. That would get disorienting quick.
In this past year I have spent much more time riding public transportation. Mostly due to the fact that I like not having to deal with parking in the downtown area. When I’m commuting I notice that most people are in their own little ear-phoned world. Thus, Microsoft did have a good idea – just poorly implemented and really only geared for those who are in densely populated areas and who ride public transport.
If there was a band who encapsulated the idea of commuting better in their name, I don’t know who it would be. The Commuters pretty much sum up the idea of getting from here to there in their name. Their lead single reinforces that idea further as it’s called “As I Make My Way”. I have a strong feeling that was on purpose. The press I got on them tells me that they are compared to Snow Patrol, U2, REM, Sugar, and The Smashing Pumpkins. For me, especially with this lead single, I’m definitely hearing a U2 vibe.
The song opens with effects laden guitar riff that gives me a feeling of coming out of a dark tunnel into the light of my destination. Then the drums coming in with a slightly groovy march feel – very U2-ish. Add in the rest of the elements and it’s adding up to a very strong opening statement from a band that is born of the commuter world known as New York.
When people are open and friendly in large cities like New York, I’d say it would be a great way to learn of new music. Especially when you’re thrust together in close quarters and needing to learn about new local bands. To that end commuter connections would be great for music.
Whether or not you agree, if you dig the song pick up their single at the links above. If you’ve enjoyed my take on it, sign up for my mailing list and receive a nice little holiday surprise from me. A little more about the man behind the post.