My Bloody Valentine's "Loveless" is one of those records that keeps getting better as I get older. (The Stones' "Exile on Main Street" is another.) The first time I heard a song from it, it barely registered--just a rather hard-to-hear shoegaze song on a long compilation featuring everybody from Lush to Slowdive to the Boo Radleys (who, despite their unfortunate name, made a great impression). But I kept running into devoted fans, so when I saw the re-released vinyl a couple years ago, I bought it. I didn't like it on the first listen. Everything was too blurry, like I was watching TV with vaseline smeared across the screen. The vocals were buried (not necessarily bad, but impossible to hear here). Occasionally, it sounded like the record was warped, and I checked it several times, only to realize that the band was screwing with the tape speed. This annoyed me.
I forgot about it, then went back a bit later and listened again, straight through. It grew on me. Eventually, I realized that you have to forget about how you want the record to sound, accept that the band knew what they were doing, and listen to what they actually managed to achieve. There's no other record that sounds like it. Now, I listen to it about once a month.
It also helps if you play the record very loud. (Come to think of it, that's true with "Exile" as well.) Which brings me to my next point: fans who couldn't afford to fly to one of the band's handful of ear-splitting U.S. shows last year might be in luck. MBV is playing the Coachella festival in Indio on April 19, and yesterday added four other shows in Austin, Dallas, Denver and--lucky me--Seattle.
What does this have to do with technology? Listen to the last seven minutes or so of this. Oh, and it actually goes on longer. Now that's technology! The audio equivalent of the United States' annual defense budget, that's what it is. I'm just sonically weird enough that this strikes me as incredibly exciting, not incredibly annoying, to hear in person.