“Beginning to Hash Out The Veritable Explosion of Critical Sucking-up We See Online Today”

Good God, I’ve about had it with these suckup music sites. To wit: journalistic integrity is paramount to a website’s functionality, but it almost seems like more of a novelty these days than a requirement. Imagine a blogger doling out vague praise for an album and then having a link to a song right there under it: that’s more traffic for that website, a bolster of its “visits” or “pageviews” count.
Morals aside, all of this critical namby-pamby we’re undoubtedly experiencing (I mean people are still hobbling Cheap Trick, for God’s sake) is highly ironic because as I think I mention quite frequently in this forum, the ‘90s were a time of incredible music snobbery. Let’s start with the LA Times review of Live’s dark and abrasive Throwing Copper followup Secret Samadhi: Natalie Nichols describes the band’s efforts in general (with impertinence to current album) as “relentlessly poppy,” despite that Copper featured blistering memorable rockers like “Iris” and “Sh** Towne,” and then goes on to furnish them little or no benefit of the doubt, magnifying the album’s flaws like how “the touches of strings, sitar and organ feel like empty flourishes” (granted she does have a point there), yielding in the end a two-star review of what I personally consider a fine album. A Rolling Stone critic got fired for sinking his teeth so deeply and tackily into Hootie & the Blowfish’s second album, but even the accepted writers were similarly spiny before the Afro-Amer.-singer-harboring quartet, likely for cultural reasons, calling Darius Rucker a “nonkie,” in so many words comparing him to “If Colin Powell Sang and Played Guitar.” [1] So in one of these examples we have something, in the LA Times writer, which at least COULD be construed into a high artistic standard, whereas the New York Times example is obviously just an inane attack on the guy’s heritage, a stipulation which should have no place in op. ed.
What I see in this current day in which we live is discontentedness is taboo, again ironic given that our political situation is so ridiculous. There’s this new cultural-superiority-merchant Vinyl Me, Please constantly trying to hawk these ridiculous $22 albums on us, much of it of sh** we’ve already heard, but you never hear them say what music they DON’T like [2]. Now, I realize they’re a merchant, but I see the same thing on sites too, with the obvious incentive of increased clicks. I’m assuming this is the case too with NME, which bizarrely championed Ryan Adams’ bombastic and plain Prisoner of this year, saying that it was good BECAUSE it resembled the Eagles and Whitesnake. Christ, I would have figured the only thing on Earth the Brits hated worse than the Eagles and Whitesnake would be like Madame Defarge or something.
This one site’s year-end list this past year made me absolutely sick: David Bowie, Radiohead and A Tribe Called Quest. It’s like what is this, a geriatric bingo convention? Gimme a fu**in’ break! What happened to trying to expose new artists, something Nirvana would regularly try to do by inviting Shonen Knife, PJ Harvey et. al. to open for them? That seems to have fallen by the wayside. I mean what kind of moron wouldn’t see through the fact that ATCQ is trying to opportunistically capitalize on the buzz of Fife Dawg just having died? Ack. I mean, it’d be one thing if he’d died in gunfire, I suppose, and we had new material written IN RESPONSE to his death, somewhat like Puff Daddy’s “I’ll Be Missing You” or something; but that “We Got it from Here Thank You for Your Service” title doesn’t even make sense to me either. All these douche bag journals keep going on and on about how great A Moon Shaped Pool is, yet the only thing you see on feeds is like “Band Does Epic Version of ‘Karma Police,’” or something like that. Again. Ad nauseum. It’s like, has anyone actually even listened to A Moon Shaped Pool? I personally checked out when I saw that “True Love Waits” was on it: that song is not only recycled from I Might Be Wrong: Live Recordings, but horrible, as well, easily the worst Radiohead song I’ve heard to date. I championed this one young female artist Erin Tobey on my list this past year. She explicitly hates men. Well, at least that’s fu**ing SOMETHING. At least that’s a bona fide artistic statement not precipitated by either band member mortem or hair and fashion. If we don’t need music today, if music is pointless and the whole thing is just a cultural fashion show, I’d rather see the whole thing done away with entirely. But, thank God, that will never happen — there’s just an increased obligation to identify de facto payola.
[1] Colin Powell is generally regarded as an especially “un-black” former Secretary of State and presidential candidate.
[2] What makes it even worse is that even though I’ve never even “like”’d one of their links on Facebook, or “like”’d their page, they still once tried to sell me a fu**ing Gorillaz album. Gorillaz is one of my primary pet peeves on planet Earth and I could compose an entire post just about how juvenile and artistically empty they are. Let’s see, their recording master is DIGITAL, hence nullifying any value in hearing it in the vinyl format… also the guy tried to call them “the first multimedia band,” which is not only completely stupid and componentially pointless but also false, given Pink Floyd’s The Wall movie ventures.
[3] I have a theory that young people actually just hate and are jealous of the ‘90s: I literally read this one ranking of SNL actors wherein Will Ferrell, Chris Kattan and Jim Breuer were all ranked really low, and I think they put the coked-up, torpid John Belushi first, the man who singlehandedly drove the Blues Brothers shooting cost to like its own double with constant drug-addled set absenteeism.

109 thoughts on ““Beginning to Hash Out The Veritable Explosion of Critical Sucking-up We See Online Today”

  1. Cristina Sanchez (Cafini) – I abuelstoly LOVE these Kate!! You always do such an amazing job. You sure did have an adorable little model! I love that kid!!

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