Originally Posted by SYRFox
Basically this. I'm really glad to see less negative reviews tbh. Always thought a music review was much more interesting if you consider it as a way to describe a way you can get into a record, explaining some codes/keys, rather than just stating something is good or bad
I don't know if there's any systematic way to really review music "well." It's been bugging me forever.
To score or not to score? To provide a recommendation, or simply describe and detail? I really don't know what's best, but I think that even though numerical values tend to lead to more skimming and less thorough reading, I think ditching them altogether would decrease readership even more. Maybe that's ok? Maybe music criticism should either die off, or take on the shape of feature writing, telling a kind of story of an album based on the tangible facts (where and how it was recorded, what the songs are called, who plays what where, etc.) -- a story fleshed out by the writer's impression of what the intention is, what the music sounds like, and so on.
I don't know. Really. When I hear an album and it blows me away, I want to read positive reviews of it. I'm human, and there's no shaking the confirmation bias. When I really hate an album (which I probably wouldn't unless it's a beloved artist going totally off the rails, or something that I dislike that's just being jammed relentlessly it into my skull by radio or whatever), I want to read about how shitty the album is. That's rarely the case though. Most albums are neither AMAZING nor so unbelievably fucking terrible that I would derive pleasure from someone cutting it to shreds. It's usually just a non-thing. Most music is just whatever.
So I have no clue what my ideal system would be, but I guess I'm glad there are positive and negative reviews, if only because I can't think of a better way to systematically evaluate music when 80% of it doesn't even warrant being evaluated.
I think it might work to have numberless reviews, but to still somehow designate some of the albums as "Notable" or "Must-hear," or whatever. I don't think a " or notable" or "must not hear" equivalent would be necessary at all.
I'm just blabbering because when I've always been interested in writing about music, but goddamn... I wouldn't actually WANT to using any of the major publications' rubrics for doing so. So it makes me wonder about what I would like to do, or see more of.