Friday, March 23, 2007

A FEW QUESTIONS

Here are some questions a friend of mine typed up today. Please answer in comments so I know whether anybody is even reading all this crap. Thanks in advance for your forbearance.

1) What song or album did you have to listen to multiple times before deciding whether you liked or disliked it?
2) Inaugural entry into the Academy of the Overrated
3) Favorite sly or not-so-sly reference to another song within a song
4) Favorite Stax/Volt song
5) Your favorite music video
6) Nas or Jay-Z?
7) Song or album that, despite being from a genre you don't typically follow, led you to appreciate that genre's possibilities
8) Favorite Rolling Stones song
9) The Clash or the Ramones?
10) What song can make a shitty day seem less shitty?
11) Conversely, what song can make you wish you were deaf, at least temporarily, whenever it comes on the radio/TV/grocery store PA?
12) Favorite James Brown song
13) Beck or Bjork?
14) What is the most inventive usage of a sample you've ever heard?
15) Robert Christgau once wrote that "All good rock and roll risks fascism simply by generating mass energy, and much of it flirts with sexism simply by exploring the music's traditional subject matter. Sometimes the risks are worth it, sometimes they aren't." What are your favorite examples of the former and the latter?
16) Favorite Miles Davis song
17) Favorite song about comic book characters
18) Betty Davis or Millie Jackson?
19) Your favorite, or most despised, lyrical cliché
20) Guns 'n' Roses' 'Appetite for Destruction' -- yes or no?
21) Favorite Wu-Tang verse
22) Inaugural entry into the Academy of the Underrated
23) Your favorite rock song to not use guitar (or favorite jazz song to not use piano, or favorite rap song to not use samples/scratching)
24) MF DOOM or Madlib?
25) Your favorite live album
26) What alternate take/demo version/remix do you like more than the original version?
27) Favorite song on which Duane Allman plays guitar
28) Portishead or Massive Attack?
29) Your favorite Captain Beefheart song title
30) As a music fan, what do you want from a music critic, or from music criticism? And where do you see music criticism in general headed?

3 comments:

Erik said...

this is going to be one helluva long comment, but you asked for it (if you'd rather, delete this and I'll link to the post on my blog).

1) What song or album did you have to listen to multiple times before deciding whether you liked or disliked it
Kinks - Muswell Hillbillies. Ended up being my favorite Kinks album, but it didn't sound like anything I liked about the Kinks.

2) Inaugural entry into the Academy of the Overrated
Sex Pistols. Wonderful product, horrible music.

3) Favorite sly or not-so-sly reference to another song within a song
AC/DC - "Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap". I still smile when he throws "TNT" and "High Voltage" as possible ways to ff the offending personage.

4) Favorite Stax/Volt song
Only one... today, it's "Able Mable". Tomorrow could be "Bootleg", or "You Don't Miss Your Water" or a dozen other tracks.

5) Your favorite music video
I haven't watched many videos since I was a kid, but I still like "Sledgehammer" and maybe "Sabotage".

6) Nas or Jay-Z?
Nas, but more by default than choice. I've always gritted my teeth at Jay-Z's habit of lazily falling off the beat. If the line you write is meant to fit the rhythm in a tight and meticulous fashion (as opposed to MCs who play off the beat like jazz soloists, working to accentuate their rhymes and flow), then hit the mark. Don't drift away on the fifth line, never to return.

7) Song or album that, despite being from a genre you don't typically follow, led you to appreciate that genre's possibilities
I'm not big on the ambient or post-rock genres, but the MONO/World's End Girlfriend album Palmless Prayer/Mass Murder Refrain is one of the best things I've heard in the last six months. Evocative and beautiful.

8) Favorite Rolling Stones song
"Little T&A", but I'm not much of a Stones fan.

9) The Clash or the Ramones?
The Clash, but the best of both are pretty unimpeachable.

10) What song can make a shitty day seem less shitty?
"Bring It On Home To Me" - Sam Cooke, from Live At The Harlem Square Club.

11) Conversely, what song can make you wish you were deaf, at least temporarily, whenever it comes on the radio/TV/grocery store PA?
"Paradise By The Dashboard Light" - Meatloaf fills me with thoughts of violence, pure white hot rage.

12) Favorite James Brown song
"Licking Stick-Licking Stick", from Say It Loud - I'm Black and I'm Proud.

13) Beck or Bjork?
Bjork by a landslide. Excepting Mutations, I could pretty much leave all of Beck's catalog alone.

14) What is the most inventive usage of a sample you've ever heard?
I'm unsure of what is really the heart of this question - I've been surprised (say, Timbaland sampling Area Code 615 for Bubba Sparxxx), I've been impressed (Paul's Boutique), but inventive? Maybe the Butthole Surfers with "22 Going On 23" - they took a radio call in help show and made the most disturbing, menacing and dark thing I've ever heard.

15) Robert Christgau once wrote that "All good rock and roll risks fascism simply by generating mass energy, and much of it flirts with sexism simply by exploring the music's traditional subject matter. Sometimes the risks are worth it, sometimes they aren't." What are your favorite examples of the former and the latter?
I don't see any truth in this statement.

16) Favorite Miles Davis song
Not really a fan, but I like some of the late 60s quintet recordings, say "Nefertiti".

17) Favorite song about comic book characters
"Alley Oop".

18) Betty Davis or Millie Jackson?
Death.

19) Your favorite, or most despised, lyrical cliché
People as food stuffs in a sexual way is rather tired.

20) Guns 'n' Roses' Appetite for Destruction -- yes or no?
Yes. Still a great hard rock album, big dirty riffs and Axl as sleaze vs. creep.

21) Favorite Wu-Tang verse
Haven't cared since 95.

22) Inaugural entry into the Academy of the Underrated
Slade. Nothing quite like them, and they were pretty much solid gold from 71-75.

23) Your favorite rock song to not use guitar (or favorite jazz song to not use piano, or favorite rap song to not use samples/scratching)
Rap song: Devin The Dude - "Brairpatch".

24) MF DOOM or Madlib?
Better together, like Peanut Butter & Jelly, but Operation: Doomsday is better than the Madlib I've heard.

25) Your favorite live album
Sam Cooke - Live At The Harlem Square Club.

26) What alternate take/demo version/remix do you like more than the original version?
Elvis Costello - "Green Shirt (demo)".

27) Favorite song on which Duane Allman plays guitar
Wilson Pickett - "Hey Jude".

28) Portishead or Massive Attack?
Portishead.

29) Your favorite Captain Beefheart song title
"I Wanna Find A Woman That'll Hold My Big Toe Till I Have To Go" from Lick My Decals Off, Baby.

30) As a music fan, what do you want from a music critic, or from music criticism? And where do you see music criticism in general headed?
I want less reviews and more thought. Prior to the last few years, reviews were critical because most music being reviewed the reader would never hear. Now you can sample almost anything, whether through online stores, band or label websites, myspace, etc. I would love to read more criticism that aimed less at telling me what something is (press releases are everywhere, too), but more on why I should listen, how does it succeed or fail, how should I listen to better understand. For example, I'm trying to familiarize myself with metal after a 15-year hiatus; what should I be listening for in the new Neurosis or in Ulver? What was necessary in the 200-word print review seems lazy in the modern world of online media; shorthands like "typical tech/death metal" don't tell anyone unfamiliar with a significant portion of that genre anything at all - what about it is typical, and what makes it tech/death metal?

This is where blogs and forums become so important. People who have the breadth of knowledge can share that with people who may not, and can do so with only the limitation of their own desire.

invisibleoranges said...

I can't believe I fell for this...but I did.

1) What song or album did you have to listen to multiple times before deciding whether you liked or disliked it?

Exodus, Bonded by Blood

2) Inaugural entry into the Academy of the Overrated

Pavement

3) Favorite sly or not-so-sly reference to another song within a song

I'm blanking at the moment...there's a vocal adlib on some Sting solo album where he spoofs "Every Breath You Take"

4) Favorite Stax/Volt song

"Born Under a Bad Sign", I really need to get (the money to get) that box set

5) Your favorite music video

This is impossible, will pass

6) Nas or Jay-Z?

Nas

7) Song or album that, despite being from a genre you don't typically follow, led you to appreciate that genre's possibilities

Tweet, "Oops (Oh My)"

8) Favorite Rolling Stones song

"Honky Tonk Women"

9) The Clash or the Ramones?

Ramones

10) What song can make a shitty day seem less shitty?

Judas Priest, "Painkiller"

11) Conversely, what song can make you wish you were deaf, at least temporarily, whenever it comes on the radio/TV/grocery store PA?

Pussycat Dolls, "Don't Cha" - makes me want to go on a murderous rampage

12) Favorite James Brown song

This is tough, I'll go with "The Payback"

13) Beck or Bjork?

No Scientology, please, Bjork

14) What is the most inventive usage of a sample you've ever heard?

Any of the millions of chopped Amens in early dnb

15) Robert Christgau once wrote that "All good rock and roll risks fascism simply by generating mass energy, and much of it flirts with sexism simply by exploring the music's traditional subject matter. Sometimes the risks are worth it, sometimes they aren't." What are your favorite examples of the former and the latter?

(a) Pantera live '94, "Walk," arena full of rednecks pumping their fists in unison = terrifying, (b) I dunno, what's rock's "traditional subject matter"???

16) Favorite Miles Davis song

This is tough, maybe "Shhh/Peaceful"

17) Favorite song about comic book characters

Don't know many, how about Anthrax, "I Am the Law"

18) Betty Davis or Millie Jackson?

Have only seen Bette Davis, will go with her

19) Your favorite, or most despised, lyrical cliché

Despise - rhyming "fire" with "desire"

20) Guns 'n' Roses' 'Appetite for Destruction' -- yes or no?

Hell yes

21) Favorite Wu-Tang verse

"Wu, Tang, Wu, Tang, Wu, Tang, Wu, Tang"

22) Inaugural entry into the Academy of the Underrated

Ludicra

23) Your favorite rock song to not use guitar (or favorite jazz song to not use piano, or favorite rap song to not use samples/scratching)

Clipse, "When the Last Time"

24) MF DOOM or Madlib?

Madlib

25) Your favorite live album

Outside of jazz, I generally don't like live albums...maybe that Allman Brothers Live at the Fillmore

26) What alternate take/demo version/remix do you like more than the original version?

That Justin Broadrick remix of Pelican

27) Favorite song on which Duane Allman plays guitar

"In Memory of Elizabeth Reed"

28) Portishead or Massive Attack?

Massive Attack

29) Your favorite Captain Beefheart song title
I'm not into song titles..."Muffin Man" b/c it reminds me of Frank Zappa

30) As a music fan, what do you want from a music critic, or from music criticism? And where do you see music criticism in general headed?

What I want from music critics is for them to get out of the way of the music. I see music criticism headed down the drain.

ELIZABETHREED said...

1) What song or album did you have to listen to multiple times before deciding whether you liked or disliked it?

Big Stars' Third. I heard it when I was 17 and I just wasn't ready. Same for Pere Ubu's Dub Housing.

2) Inaugural entry into the Academy of the Overrated

Joanna Newsom. Or maybe I just don't get it.

3) Favorite sly or not-so-sly reference to another song within a song



4) Favorite Stax/Volt song

Johnnie Taylor "I Could Never Be President"

5) Your favorite music videos

The Replacements "Bastards of Young", the Avalanches "Frontier Psychiatry", and that creepy dog one from last year, Vitalic "Poney Part 1".

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ap0p7mhu4w0
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8BWBn26bX0
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F52dx9Z0L5k

6) Nas or Jay-Z?

Um.

7) Song or album that, despite being from a genre you don't typically follow, led you to appreciate that genre's possibilities

Hanoi Rocks' Bangkok Shocks -- never knew how much power pop was in hair metal til then.
8) Favorite Rolling Stones song

"Gimme Shelter"

9) The Clash or the Ramones?

Clash

10) What song can make a shitty day seem less shitty?

Dinosaur's "Freak Scene" and Nick Drake's "Time Has Told Me".

11) Conversely, what song can make you wish you were deaf, at least temporarily, whenever it comes on the radio/TV/grocery store PA?

That accursed James Blunt song.

12) Favorite James Brown song



13) Beck or Bjork?

Why you gotta be like that?

14) What is the most inventive usage of a sample you've ever heard?

Terry Riley's "Youre Nogood" sampling Harvey Averne's R&B hit "You're No Good" -- 20 minutes of seasick-making warbles and loops starting ever so subtly and eventually devolving into utter white noise. Stellar.

15) Robert Christgau once wrote that "All good rock and roll risks fascism simply by generating mass energy, and much of it flirts with sexism simply by exploring the music's traditional subject matter. Sometimes the risks are worth it, sometimes they aren't." What are your favorite examples of the former and the latter?



16) Favorite Miles Davis songs

"He Loved Him Madly" and "It Never Entered My Mind".

17) Favorite song about comic book characters



18) Betty Davis or Millie Jackson?

Betty.

19) Your favorite, or most despised, lyrical cliché

You know, that one line in that one song.

20) Guns 'n' Roses' 'Appetite for Destruction' -- yes or no?

Dunno.

21) Favorite Wu-Tang verse

Dunno.

22) Inaugural entry into the Academy of the Underrated

Yes. The band Yes. I fucking love Yes.

23) Your favorite rock song to not use guitar (or favorite jazz song to not use piano, or favorite rap song to not use samples/scratching)



24) MF DOOM or Madlib?

Doom is sexier.

25) Your favorite live album

That's hard! Bloomfield/Kooper/Stills' Super Session (Live at the Fillmore East), Sam Cooke's Live at Harlem Square, or Townes Van Zandt's Live at the Old Quarter.

26) What alternate take/demo version/remix do you like more than the original version?

"Tomorrow Never Knows" from the Beatles Anthology #2. Also, Yes' a capella version of "Leave It" is shockingly great.

27) Favorite song on which Duane Allman plays guitar

"Midnight Rider"

28) Portishead or Massive Attack?

Dunno.

29) Your favorite Captain Beefheart song title

"Tropical Hot Dog Night"

30) As a music fan, what do you want from a music critic, or from music criticism? And where do you see music criticism in general headed?

I want to find someone who can turn me onto something new and who writes intelligently. This is rare. I want to trust. I will fall in love with a guy with good taste. I am a girl. Music criticism is being practiced (bungled) by far too many people.