1. Technological shifts alter the ways we listen, but not always in obvious directions…. In its day, the LP was an unwelcome innovation, reviled by some fans as a biz-driven rip-off. Collections of themed songs or instrumental exotica showed off how good albums were in sustaining a mood.

    This was scented-candle listening if anything is, but its demonstration of the LP’s power helped establish the format in time for the rock era, with its concentrated individual exploration of music. That in turn created a market for headphone listening, which turned into portable headphone listening, which dovetailed with the age of “multitasking” Cocker talks about. All these shifts seem logical with hindsight: all had significant, unintended effects on the culture of music.