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Release Date: August 05, 2009
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iTunes New Music Releases

Release Date: September 29, 2009
Genre: Rock
Release Date: September 20, 2009
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  • Billy Miles

    • 10 out of 10
    • Billy Miles
    • Take the voice of a young Billie Holiday and stuff it into a svelte, petite body with the face of an angel, and you have some idea of what it's like to experience the music of Billy Miles in her self-
  • Go Away White

    • 10 out of 10
    • Bauhaus
    • Go Away White is an album I've been waiting more than 20 years to hear, and the good news is that it was worth the wait.  The latest -- and last, no...for real this time -- album from

  • Priest = Aura

    • 10 out of 10
    • The Church
    • Another of my all-time favorites, Priest = Aura is one of those rare albums where every song is simply fantastic, and a testament to how good pop-rock can be.

      Each song immediatel

  • Hello

    • 8 out of 10
    • Poe
    • Poe rocked my world with "Angry Johnny" (I want to kill you/I want to blow you/Away) and "Trigger Happy Jack" (Trigger Happy Jack/ You're gonna blow/But I'm gonna get off/Before you go), as powe

  • Rift

    • 8 out of 10
    • Phish
    • This quasi-concept album (the only of its kind) from these Vermonters finally showcased their ability to convey a message with a studio album, whereas previously they only succeeded in doing so live.

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What To Do About Blu-ray?  Just Go For It

On Thursday, BusinessWeek painted a not-so-rosy picture for the future of Blu-ray discs, giving them at most five years. On Friday. CNET Australia summoned a different set of experts and painted a brighter picture of coexistence. What are we to think about al that and do this holiday season?

But first, some irritating facts. NPD surveyed over 11,000 Americans and found that, currently, customers are spending 80 percent of their entertainment money on DVDs and movie tickets compared to 0.5 percent on Internet downloads of videos.

The feeling in the industry is that the ratio will change in the future, but no one knows how fast. Hollywood is covering its bets by offering both, to be ready for the transition. Those who are betting on the Internet would like to believe that the Blu-ray disc is the last physical format we’ll see for movies. Somehow, I have come to doubt that.

After all, if word gets out that the Internet will take over, those very, very profitable Blu-ray sales will dry up sooner than planned.

I’ve been following this issue for years, and I don’t believe the Internet will ever totally displace physical media. First, there are just too many places and homes in the U.S. (and overseas military bases, submarines, research outposts) where broadband isn’t an option. Second, customers like to touch and hold their favorite movies for some odd, human reason. Some -- and their children -- will never out grow that desire, just as they want to hold a physical book. It’s human nature.

The question for customers is really whether they want to invest in Blu-ray, risk being orphaned, feel bad about being manipulated and paying too much for Blu-ray media, and whether the video quality is worth the upgrade.

Today, at, it was suggested that we’ll see low-end Blu-ray players for sale on Black Thursday for $149. Price reductions are just taking too long, with people living on Internet Time, for those prices to get to the point where it’s a no brainer to pick one up.

I bought a Samsung BDP-1400 Blu-ray (Profile 1.0) player in December 2007 for $279 (Amazon). I’ve done six Internet firmware upgrades. I’ve been using it productively and enjoying it for almost a year now. The video quality of Blu-ray movies is stunning. No, DVD is not "good enough" in my opinion. There’s a year of my life well spent for not too much money.

However, I will admit that most of my viewing has been Blu-ray and (upscaled DVD) movies acquired through Netflix. I’m still put off by the prices of Blu-ray movie titles and have only bought a few. Iron Man will be next, but not if it’s priced higher than US$30.00. [Crossing my fingers on that.] Waiting for prices to come down has been my strategy while I enjoy using Netflix.

At this point, it’s pointless to fret about whether the format will go away. A good quality Blu-ray player will always be able to play one’s DVD collection and make the movies look good. It’s all a matter of one’s desire to experiment, enjoy some really high quality videos, and let the Internet downloads co-exist.

For some, buying a Blu-ray player means a forced upgrade to a new HDTV with component or HDMI inputs to exploit Blu-ray’s 1080p output. I understand that.

If I were to formulate any buying advice for those who already have an HDTV or plan to get one at Christmas, it would be, life is short. When a good player by a name brand drops below $200, go for it and enjoy some fun titles at Christmas. Disney’s Ratatouille is amazing on Blu-ray. Leave the fretting to Apple, the movie studios and the industry pundits.


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