PDA

View Full Version : The Worst Record Review of All Time



JoelofArc
05-11-2009, 02:45 PM
What do you guys feel is the worst record review ever committed to print/computer screens? There have been some pretty awful, incoherent, hilarious ones over the years.

My friends and I did this dramatic reading of our personal favorite: Pitchfork editor-in-chief Ryan Schreiber tackling a live Coltrane album. If you ever wanted to see a review that somehow went from a Clockwork Orange parody to a crazy, vaguely racist impression of an African American, this one's for you!

<object width="560" height="340"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/kvogqD8NIS8&hl=en&fs=1&color1=0x234900&color2=0x4e9e00"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/kvogqD8NIS8&hl=en&fs=1&color1=0x234900&color2=0x4e9e00" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="560" height="340"></embed></object>

Young blood
05-11-2009, 02:52 PM
MBHOL1PcPR8

tessalasset
05-11-2009, 03:33 PM
joelofarc that was funny.

TomAz
05-11-2009, 03:54 PM
take your pick. robertchristgau.com


The Bends [Capitol, 1995]
Admired by Britcrits, who can't tell whether they're "pop" or "rock," and their record company, which pushed (and shoved) this follow-up until it went gold Stateside, they try to prove "Creep" wasn't a one-shot by pretending that it wasn't a joke. Not that there's anything deeply phony about Thom Yorke's angst--it's just a social given, a mindset that comes as naturally to a '90s guy as the skilled guitar noises that frame it. Thus the words achieve precisely the same pitch of aesthetic necessity as the music, which is none at all. C

OK Computer [Capitol, 1997]
My favorite Pink Floyd album has always been Wish You Were Here, and you know why? It has soul, that's why--it's Roger Waters's lament for Syd, not my idea of a tragic hero but as long as he's Roger's that doesn't matter. Radiohead wouldn't know a tragic hero if they were cramming for their A levels, and their idea of soul is Bono, who they imitate further at the risk of looking even more ridiculous than they already do. So instead they pickle Thom Yorke's vocals in enough electronic marginal distinction to feed a coal town for a month. Their art-rock has much better sound effects than the Floyd snoozefest Dark Side of the Moon. But it's less sweeping and just as arid. B-

Kid A [Capitol, 2000]
I guess the fools who ceded these bummed-out Brits U2's world's-greatest-rock-band slot actually did care about what bigger fool Thom Yorke had to say as well as how he made it sound. Why else the controversy over this bag of sonics? Me, I'm so relieved Yorke's doing without lyrics. Presaging too damn much but no more a death knell for song than OK Computer was for organic life, this is an imaginative, imitative variation on a pop staple: sadness made pretty. Alienated masterpiece nothing--it's dinner music. More claret? A-

BlackSwan
05-11-2009, 04:01 PM
It must suck to be that wrong.

buddy
05-11-2009, 04:05 PM
[Reading a review of Spinal Tap's latest album]
Marty DiBergi: "This pretentious ponderous collection of religious rock psalms is enough to prompt the question, 'What day did the Lord create Spinal Tap, and couldn't he have rested on that day too?'"

[reading a review of the album "Shark Sandwich"]
Marty DiBergi: The review for "Shark Sandwich" was merely a two word review which simply read "Shit Sandwich".

SoulDischarge
05-11-2009, 04:10 PM
take your pick. robertchristgau.com


The Bends [Capitol, 1995]
Admired by Britcrits, who can't tell whether they're "pop" or "rock," and their record company, which pushed (and shoved) this follow-up until it went gold Stateside, they try to prove "Creep" wasn't a one-shot by pretending that it wasn't a joke. Not that there's anything deeply phony about Thom Yorke's angst--it's just a social given, a mindset that comes as naturally to a '90s guy as the skilled guitar noises that frame it. Thus the words achieve precisely the same pitch of aesthetic necessity as the music, which is none at all. C

OK Computer [Capitol, 1997]
My favorite Pink Floyd album has always been Wish You Were Here, and you know why? It has soul, that's why--it's Roger Waters's lament for Syd, not my idea of a tragic hero but as long as he's Roger's that doesn't matter. Radiohead wouldn't know a tragic hero if they were cramming for their A levels, and their idea of soul is Bono, who they imitate further at the risk of looking even more ridiculous than they already do. So instead they pickle Thom Yorke's vocals in enough electronic marginal distinction to feed a coal town for a month. Their art-rock has much better sound effects than the Floyd snoozefest Dark Side of the Moon. But it's less sweeping and just as arid. B-

Kid A [Capitol, 2000]
I guess the fools who ceded these bummed-out Brits U2's world's-greatest-rock-band slot actually did care about what bigger fool Thom Yorke had to say as well as how he made it sound. Why else the controversy over this bag of sonics? Me, I'm so relieved Yorke's doing without lyrics. Presaging too damn much but no more a death knell for song than OK Computer was for organic life, this is an imaginative, imitative variation on a pop staple: sadness made pretty. Alienated masterpiece nothing--it's dinner music. More claret? A-

I don't know why
You wanna impress Christgau
Let that shit die
And find out the new goal
Kill yr idols
Sonic death

bleep
05-11-2009, 04:11 PM
this series focuses on old people reviewing contemporary albums. not the worst reviews by any means, just very, very entertaining

Harvey Milk & Beck
s5i9v8jaOJ4

Young Jeezy & Animal Collective
ICwLI96qWic

TomAz
05-11-2009, 04:16 PM
[reading a review of the album "Shark Sandwich"]
Marty DiBergi: The review for "Shark Sandwich" was merely a two word review which simply read "Shit Sandwich".

...



( ) [MCA, 2002]
?_;@$. C

TomAz
05-11-2009, 04:20 PM
I don't know why
You wanna impress Christgau
Let that shit die
And find out the new goal
Kill yr idols
Sonic death

Christgau is personal friends with the members of SY. Like he's been to their house socially or something. Or so he says.

Still-ill
05-11-2009, 05:17 PM
Oh god Christgau is awful... his Slint "Spiderland" review is so off it makes me wonder if he listened to the album at all. I understand not liking something but he said something along the line of "Good Morning, Captain' is far too upbeat to end an album."

TallGuyCM
05-11-2009, 05:25 PM
Wow...Kid A, dinner music? Not unless your dinner is pot brownies and Maker's Mark.

pancakespancakes
05-11-2009, 09:16 PM
Robert Christgau is everything that is wrong with music criticism and he should be hung, drawn & quartered.

Or... he should have retired 35 years ago.

nothingman00
05-12-2009, 09:25 PM
Lots of love for Bobby Christgau in this thread.

I can't remember who the reviewers were, but I read a thread covering a lot of the initial MBY-Loveless reviews that were pretty fucking hilarious.

Also, there was a Sonic Youth album that got a 0.0 from p4k that, in hindsight and given the reviewer's admission that he had been longing to give a 0.0 to an album, was pretty funny. Even funnier when they gave Daydream Nation it's proper 10 a few months later when they were playing a p4k related show...

wmgaretjax
05-12-2009, 09:27 PM
Also, there was a Sonic Youth album that got a 0.0 from p4k that, in hindsight and given the reviewer's admission that he had been longing to give a 0.0 to an album, was pretty funny. Even funnier when they gave Daydream Nation it's proper 10 a few months later when they were playing a p4k related show...

This album has gotten such an unfortunate bad rap because of this....

SoulDischarge
05-12-2009, 09:31 PM
It's no seminal work of unbearable genius, but yeah, giving NYC Ghosts & Flowers a 0.0 is just stupid.

catsandhats
05-12-2009, 09:40 PM
http://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/7986-the-no-music/

to really appreciate how bad this review is you have to read the pedestrians response (http://elefanten.blogspot.com/2004_07_01_elefanten_archive.html)


To quote Sam Chenault from a pitchforkmedia.com review of Themselves:
"Perhaps Dose One would benefit from being reminded that hip-hop is derived from the spoken word traditions of the Last Poets and not the modernist obscurity of Ezra Pound or H. Doolittle”

I won't get into whether Dose is influenced by modernist poets like Pound or H.D. (he's not), as it's beside the point, but notice the way he holds Themselves to hip-hop criteria Themselves never signed on to. In the process, look at how he re-invents hip-hop to fit the measure of his exclusion. Hip-hop doesn't come from the goddamned Last Poets, the Watts Prophets, or Gil-Scott Heron, no matter the black nationalist requirements of critics who demand their rap as unwhite as it gets; it comes out of sound systems, disco breaks, and the needs of parties and park jams.

Elsewhere in the review he reveals that hip-hop is necessarily "street-level" and made of "simple loops, lyrics, and beats," and that "shit," surprise surprise, "must be kept real." Well, there's nothing simple about rap and the old equation between blackness and realness is a distinctly American sickness. Finally, Chenault commits the unpardonable critical failure of holding a piece of art to a reductive generic formula that has little to do with the music itself. It's something like criticizing a Tortoise album for how it's not a Ghostface album. "There's not even any rhyming on it!," they squeal.
You can see a similar thing at play in the recent Village Voice review of the Passage album, which is a positive review that nonetheless can't help shrieking "white white white" in an absurd refrain.

nothingman00
05-12-2009, 09:41 PM
http://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/7342-nyc-ghosts-flowers/

i just googled and reread. What a dick.

nothingman00
05-12-2009, 09:46 PM
http://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/7986-the-no-music/

to really appreciate how bad this review is you have to read the pedestrians response (http://elefanten.blogspot.com/2004_07_01_elefanten_archive.html)

Holy shit, the opening paragraph of that review reads like a freshman music theorist peaking on his first Ritalin after being turned on to Illmatic...

"Hip-hop has always adhered to a structural minimalism. Like a Raymond Carver short story or a Carl Andre sculpture, the best hip-hop has utilized the simplest of aesthetics to portray the most complex emotional, political and cultural dynamics. No frills, gimmicks, or masturbatory embellishments; just simple loops, lyrics, and beats that somehow manage to convey the moral ambiguity and logical contradictions that comprise life. You don't need to be versed in Eliot and you don't have to understand Stravinsky. What you do need is the courage to spit the truth, the confidence to flow, and the basic street-level inventiveness to manipulate technology. In other words, you need to keep that shit real."

PotVsKtl
05-12-2009, 10:01 PM
But this is the new indie ethos: Don’t think; dance. Like Tare says on “My Girls,” “I don’t mean to seem like I care about material things like my social stance, I just want four walls and adobe slats for my girls.”

I have absolutely no idea what that means, and I don’t care—print it up, put it on a T-shirt and hand me that glow stick.


http://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2009/01/animal-collective-merriweather-post-pavilion-domin.html

TallGuyCM
05-12-2009, 11:25 PM
^ That's funny.