This is very interesting as a new format for musical replay ... so rather than store your collection in a potentially vulnerable physical player or hard drive you store it on an Amazon provided online database ... reading beetween the lines it represents a diversion from the all encompassing power of iTunes that is currently only available to US consumers in its full scope but is an expected evolution in the development music and media content distribution and storage.

One wonders wether consumers are really prepared to go all the way and pay for a low quality non physical copy of a piece of music that is no longer held on any device ... where does that transition beetween a radio broadcast and some form of ownership by the end user begin and end? These boundaries are becoming increasingly blurred. There is a great personal ownership security in having a "Hard Copy" CD or LP that the new world digital formats are simply unable to provide. And the root of ones insecurity is the inherent mistrust that we must have in these organisations that wish us to pay for the music again and again but never actually own an original.

Arnie Nudell of Infinity Loudspeakers used to have a properly done system set up to impress people with his craft in the form of the Infinity IRS Speakers. His chosen media was original Master Tapes played back on a Revox B77 Reel to Reel. Apparently it was absolutely stunning. It seems a tad tragic that we are actually getting further away from the source rather than closer in the race to develop a secure digital content distribution model.

Perhaps I'm overreacting and there isn't really a conspiracy to make us all accept MP3 as the standard, we do have more choice than ever before. It was with great pleasure that I discovered that our local bookshop being Readings in Carlton (surely one of the best bookshops in the Southern Hemisphere by the way...) has started purveying really high quality LP's alongside their very good selection of Cd's and Blu Rays. Like ourselves Readings are a case history for a small medium enterprise that has survived and thrived in the age of Amazon and Borders, I do hope they keep selling Vinyl as one of the few perks of this job is being able to buy software for demo ...

Amazon home page for the Cloud Player.