More Than A Formula

by twofiftyorless

The internet is filled with really cool music sites to help you discover music. For free, you can listen to artists and music channels on Rhapsody, find artists or songs of likeness on Pandora or discover new artists with LivePlasma. All of these services have something special to offer a listener, and I’ve used them with great success in the past finding “similar artists”. Yesterday, for the first time, I tried to find a similar song.

Despite its intricacy and obvious virtuosity, I have found that Steve Vai’s For the Love of God is my favorite instrumental guitar piece because (to me) it simultaneously combines remarkable musicianship with palatable emotion in a way that is unique to the genre. Amazingly, I hear anguish and joy on the same track…the only track out of the 15,000 song library that speaks to me this week. Desperate to find something equally compelling, I went to Pandora, which said:

Based on what you’ve told us so far, we’re playing this track because it features electric rock instrumentation, demanding instrumental part writing, minor key tonality, an electric guitar solo and an instrumental arrangement.

I love Liquid Tension Experiment (I own all of their releases, after all), but Pandora had completely missed the mark.