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Wednesday, 20 November 2019

He's On His Soap Box Again : Reviews

I've just finished a review that will appear later. It is a new album that stands up with anything that I've ever heard. I've been listening to it for a month or so and so I thought I'd look around the internet to see what other people felt. I got more and more frustrated. The majority of the half dozen that I read, all miraculously said the same thing, described the album in the same way and said nothing about any of the songs.

All were obviously cut and pasted from a PR Release or Blurb. What is the point of this? Do people want to look cool, but don't particularly listen to any of the stuff? Are they just trying to get numbers up? It can't be Clickbait, because these bands aren't important enough to people. Clickbait is for the comfort listening of reviewers who want to get Facebook likes, it's always older stuff, led by nostalgia.

I really do not see the point of reviewing an album if you don't tell people why you like it and if you have listened to it, tell us what you think. If you haven't listened to it, why review? I read a lot of other people's writing and there are some fantastic writers out there. Writers who show they love music and you can feel the passion. Writers who make you listen to an album by a band that you don't like, because the writing is so great.

I do not yearn for olden days. The internet has brought as much good as bad, but one of the most irritating things is that everyone is an expert now. Everyone is in Showbiz, Everyone is a Star. Just because you have a Blog, doesn't mean that you can write. The judges are out there worldwide. If your reviews aren't acknowledged or liked, it may not be because of the crowded review market place, the fault of the internet or the state of the music industry. It may just be that people spot a PR piece and once they do they'll never bother with you again.

I'm still amazed at the success of I Don't Hear A Single. It grows and grows not because I'm such a wonderful writer, but because I try to tell you why I like an album and only review albums that I like. There is no quid pro quo or payment. People may not like the album I recommend, but at least they will listen to it, something many reviewers don't seem capable of.

Phew I'm glad that's off my chest!

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