Saturday, February 20, 2010

good reviews/bad reviews

good review

derisive review

both reviews mention that the new effort from LA hipsters and professional bandwagon riders Local Natives bears a striking resemblance to recent efforts from Fleet Foxes. the pitchfork review even mentions several other recent indie stalwarts that Local Natives sound exactly like ("sort of a West Coast Grizzly Bear"). faint praise? soft bigotry of low expectations?

pitchfork says something else curious about this band, which is especially curious if you've clicked through the second link. "Local Natives have already gained a foothold in parts of Europe-- their album has received attention in the UK." would you care to know what the guardian UK has to say about this band?

"[T]he unsuspecting could be forgiven for thinking they are hearing demos for the Foxes' second record. As such, it's almost impossible to listen to without making comparisons, and Local Natives are not the beneficiaries of the process. It's like listening to the ­Vibrators after the Clash: decent enough on its own terms, but lesser and later – pop's cardinal sin." so, yeah, they're big in europe.

how does pitchfork address the issue of this band being grossly unoriginal and hacktacular? "In short, the Silver Lake quintet have followed indie rock's major players in recent years-- they knew how to dress for success in 2010. Great for them-- now, what's in it for you? Plenty as it turns out."

wow! so they sound exactly like a band that hit it big about one year ago. to the british writer, this is "pop's cardinal sin" to the american writer, "great for them!"

at the end of the final paragraph of p-fork's thumb on the scale: "True, we tend to bow at novelty and innovation, but Gorilla Manor proves to be a refreshing reminder of the pleasures of synthesis."

jesus fucking christ!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

an open letter to the sound technicians of brooklyn

dear technicians,

i know life isn't working out the way you had planned. you moved to brooklyn with dreams of being a more "plugged in" basquiat, or the next david sedaris, or maybe your big brother told you that warriors was a cool movie while you were young and the impression just stuck. your dreams have not come true yet; instead, some bartender (sympathetic from having once suffered through the same delusions) gave you a regular paying gig doing sound.

in brooklyn, no one complains if something is inaudible. no one complains if there are ungodly levels of reverb. your only responsibility is to avoid feedback.

it may not be something you write about on facebook, it probably wouldn't make for a thrilling reality show, and your big brother still thinks you're a nerd.

but guess what? it's your fucking job. it pays for your pbr's, without which you would be generally less surly which would in turn force you to adjust your entire persona. your arrogant grumpiness is a lifestyle which you could not afford without this gig.

when the band ten feet in front of your face starts feeding back wildly: 1) it's because you fucked up; 2) you make more money than the performers on any given night, so; 3) pull your face away from the fucking iphone and do your fucking job.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

racist/not racist little wayne review

from today's review of "rebirth" which i have yet to hear:
"Considering Wayne is a man whose artistic aims apparently involve 1) Collecting oil-tycoon cash, 2) Having sex with several women at once, and 3) Concocting the world's finest excrement-related rhymes, Rebirth is most definitely a flop, terribly unsexy, and contains surprisingly few shit jokes. Wayne is playing against type here. "When I play sick, I'm Jordan with the flu," he boasts on the album, referring to Jordan's classic game against the Jazz. And in general, that's true; but here Wayne is like Mike with pneumonia and a broken leg... playing baseball."

ryan dombal (seriously, that's his fucking name) is trying to be endearing and funny here, but what he accomplishes is shitting all over one of the most prolific musicians of our moment, exhibiting a totally gay sense of humor along the way. your jordan joke vs. wayne's jordan joke: guess who sells millions of albums and guess who writes about them on a blog!

further, the three comedic "artistic aims" mentioned are, in fact, time-tested ways to belittle black men: obsessed with money, oversexed, and vulgar.

at the very start of the review: "'Everybody say they just do it, well, I just don't,' claims Lil Wayne on Rebirth, his unlikely, unqualified, and quite unbelievable rock album." i stared at that word "unqualified" for quite some time. can it be true that rock has reached this point, where there are qualifications one must acquire before making it? i suppose that's what makes wavvves more qualified to release a rock album than a guy who's been putting out music for almost a decade.

a little later: "In the mid 1980s, Run-D.M.C. used distorted guitars and stadium-rock drums to help break hip-hop into the mainstream. Now, one of the world's biggest rappers is using the same tools to make a niche record only a diehard could truly love. That flip says as much about hip-hop's current state of evolution (shaky) as it does about Lil Wayne's current commercial predicament. [T]he idea that he'll never top the million-in-a-week phenomenon that was Tha Carter III is naturally weighing on Wayne. He may never have a single as big as 'Lollipop' or reach the level of universal relevancy to warrant another prime time interview with Katie Couric. He seems to realize this on Rebirth." oh dear. you know you've made it when katie couric is talkin to you on the TV! wondering how he's going to top that masterpiece is surely a "commercial predicament" that keeps wayne up nights.

more importantly, though, "hip-hop's current state of evolution" is "shaky". if anyone wants to defend the phrase "shaky state of evolution" from accusations of utter meaninglessness, now's your chance.

i think what mr. dombal is trying to say is that he thinks hip-hop is in trouble. of course he doesn't bother presenting any external evidence for this; the remark is parenthetical, almost as if he's reminding us of a known fact.

throughout the review, there's a distinct tone of, "what the fuck is this nigger thinking?" the music "would serve as an incredible exaggerated parody of Linkin Park angst if the song wasn't dead serious." according to this douchebag, "According to Wayne, rock music combines the coked-out idiocy of Sunset Strip hair metal with the processed rage of Bizkit-ed headbanging. Understandably, the combination can be abhorrent." in other words, wayne, you should have checked with this mostly-literate pitchfork minion before deciding on your influences; he would have steered you in a better direction.

from tha carter III's "don't get it":
"Um, mr sharpton, and anyone like you
You don't know me so if your not gonna try to
Then what you say or think about me or what I do
Is totally casper the friendly ghost to me
And it doesnt make you a good person to criticize before you improvise
Doesnt necessarily make you a bad person either but
The characteristics fall heavenly into bad's way
But since I am human, I am good and bad as well
But I try my hardest to stay good
And some of the things I do and say may be bad or just not too good
But I do try"

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

stop - grammy time

i think we all knew beyonce was destined for greatness the first time she asked us "charlie, how your angels get down like that?"

in other news, lady gaga has taken a job as the creative director for polaroid, a company which has no factories left in the united states. this is actually true.

apparently this year's grammys had 25.8 million viewers, a 35% increase over last year, and the highest ratings since 2004. the new york times says of the ratings boost that it "affirms the appeal of pop glitz at a time of plummeting record sales," so that's okay then. (i remember popping a glitz once and it actually sounded kind of like "pokerface".)

related joke: someone should do a song about blowjobs, under the alias "lady gag", called "poke her face".

whew all over the place today, time to break out the topper, a dancing butt.

and that's what i was watching instead of the grammys.

(butt dance, via Spinster aunt


Monday, February 1, 2010

Scooped by

You know that really annoying article I wrote about Paul Shirley that cherry-picked his quasi-racist quotes about MLK day and his hatred/love of rap?

Well, three days later skewered the same article.

I've been pwnd and it hurts. Like utter sadness. Like the most over-wrought and DRAMAtic break-up record ever.