Wednesday, April 27, 2005

No extra time + little interest = lack of reviews: sorry

Its just a blog so really who cares but here is the deal: lately I have been busy as all hell and finding time to write thoughtful reviews has been difficult. I have been reading Pitchfork when I can ( don't ask its a work related task) but I can't say I have been inspired to comment in detail on any given one as of late.
As a friend put it " its a sign of the times" but I don't feel particularly excited about a review of a non legit DJ Shadow cd. The review itself has its charm but the final tag line state " Note: Again, this is an unofficial release. It was not sanctioned by the artist and its purchase will not support the artist. It can be acquired through file sharing. " I tried to look up information on this particular release called "One Night in Bangkok" but came up empty handed. Maybe a reader knows just how legit or not this mix is ? As a music fan I understand the idea of seeking out rare / unreleased material from the artists I love but if the artist doesn't want people to hear it then maybe there is a reason for it. The entire subject makes my head hurt but again I don't feel right commenting on a release I know zero about.

There are a few scathing reviews which I don't personally feel that terrible about but perhaps fans / people more familiar with artists like Ben Folds, Alec Empire, or Supersystem will have something to say. I welcome reviews from outsiders : just email them to me at and I will consider posting them.
I never found Ben Folds endearing but I don't think his review deserved this final line regardless " Lest anyone suspect otherwise, I'm completely certain Folds could still kick my ass like one angry piano-juggling dwarf. It takes less guts to sit here and criticize than to go up on stage every night and shill for a mediocre new album, right?" After following Pitchfork's writing so closely each week I can't even pretend this kind of comment surprises me anymore. Maybe writers who aim for a final kick to the crotch in their reviews are hoping to pick up some extra work in Vice magazine on the side.
I remember seeing Atari Teenage Riot at CBGBs about 8 years ago and thinking they were a perfect reincarnation of modern day punk(indeed Digital Hardcore) but Alec Empire and his Associates have long since faded from my radar. Truthfully most of their records are stacked beneath the same dusty untouched pile of 12"ers once filed under Electroclash. I haven't heard this new Alec Empire release but this is at least why it's not high on my to buy / trade / seek out via friends to double check the review list.
Supersytem ( El Guapo) : just read my Edie Sedgwick review. I will go on record to say I am not a fan and am totally not the right person to defend their music.

As it has worked out, much of the more recent Pitchfork reviews cover music I either don't know well or am not terribly interested in / knowledgeable about so I don't want to fake an extended commentary just to have words appear on the screen. Ideally I mostly want to continue to fact check Pitchfork when I see glaring mis-prints and stick up for the records I wholly believe in.

A note to the other writers on the site : Hellllllloooooo out there ? I know we have talked about a few reviews that deserved a response ( Phoenix and Styrofoam to name a few) so get on it people ! Help a fellow record geek out.

One final note, just a few things I am listening to right now and loving :

Arthur Russell (I know I am soooo late on this one)
Gang Gang Dance EfterKlang
Futureheads ( I know its kinda old but its just that good)
and Dungen