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Corpsey
14-10-2016, 11:55 AM
This site has been around for ages apparently but I just happened across it.

Some bloke tears apart music reviews, and thankfully hasn't got around to me yet.

http://ripfork.com/

http://ripfork.com/writing-disorders/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iXo7_VP06RI

When I saw some comments under my review of 'Atrocitiy Exhibition' along the lines of 'Your reviewer is wrong' and 'Your reviewer didn't get this record', I instantly felt under attack. I wanted to lash out at the critics, while simultaneously feeling that they were probably right and I had been publicly wrong.

I'd been (more or less) happy to strongly criticise Danny Brown's album, over which he has possibly slaved, but flinching in the face of even the mildest criticism of my relatively hastily assembled review. I would think this is how most critics are - equal parts arrogance and insecurity.

Anyway, if you get past this guy's uppity arsehole attitude he has some interesting things to say about music reviews, and I'm going to try and take some of what he says onboard.

droid
14-10-2016, 12:11 PM
Seems to be dead now - haven't seen an update in ages.

Some insights into common problems with writing styles and some very egregious examples.

Unfortunately Ive never heard of anyone he criticises and I cant help but think that they are mostly teenagers earning a fraction of the minimum wage, so its a bit like going into an art college and giving gallery standard critiques of 2nd year work.

Corpsey
14-10-2016, 12:23 PM
I've definitely heard of some of them - Tom Breihan and Jeff Weiss, e.g.

It does seem mean-spirited to attack people who are writing for some other reason than money (cos nobody is getting paid much for doing this), but then I also reckon there isn't anybody at these publications who are really critiquing writers like this and helping them to develop. This is where the 'art college' comparison might fall down - cos at art college, students are presumably being critiqued by their tutors, and helped to improve. Whereas music reviewers are operating more or less independently.

I don't mean to criticise music editors btw cos I'm sure they've got enough to do without giving freelancers prosody lessons.

droid
14-10-2016, 12:29 PM
Sure, it just seems like an easy target.

luka
14-10-2016, 01:34 PM
your writing has improved corpsey although its maybe a bit mannered. too recognisably music writing. i would counsel breaking out of that straitjacket, shaking off those stylistic tics, finding a more immediate and embodied voice.

Corpsey
14-10-2016, 01:48 PM
I'm glad you've offered that advice, and I've become aware of an increasing stiffness to my writing in the last few years especially, probably as a result of me reading literary criticism and aspiring to write something elevated and elevating. But I've noticed that practically the only stuff I write that I end up liking is done much more off the cuff. I'll think about what you've written. Cheers!

Mr. Tea
14-10-2016, 02:11 PM
Anyway, if you get past this guy's uppity arsehole attitude he has some interesting things to say about music reviews, and I'm going to try and take some of what he says onboard.

Did you just, well, review a guy who reviews other people's music reviews? :eek:

Corpsey
14-10-2016, 02:54 PM
I would only do something like that if he had single me out for a review, at which time I would proceed to give his review 3/10, and insult his mother.

rubberdingyrapids
14-10-2016, 03:42 PM
on the quietus review of shura -

writing from this omniscient, suspiciously academic perspective drags music reviews further into a cold, impersonal hole.

where is your danny brown review btw?

luka
14-10-2016, 03:57 PM
http://crackmagazine.net/article/music/danny-brown-atrocity-exhibition/

rubberdingyrapids
14-10-2016, 04:23 PM
http://crackmagazine.net/article/music/danny-brown-atrocity-exhibition/

ive already disagreed with you about the merits of DB on the other thread so wont rehash that here.

Corpsey
14-10-2016, 04:58 PM
Yeah, let's squash that one. I don't care about Danny Brown anymore.

I find stuff to review, I review it, then I tend never to listen to it again. That seems wrong to me. I should be listening to stuff, loving it, and begging to review it. (Same with hating something.)

The rip fork guy is onto something in terms of the lack of love coming through in a lot of music writing, including mine.

And I was called out for being all speculative and self-doubting on here before, with all those qualifications 'almost as if', 'it seems as if', etc.

Corpsey
14-10-2016, 04:59 PM
Also I used to do that hyphenate-every-other-word thing, and I still have a tendency towards doing it.

rubberdingyrapids
14-10-2016, 05:06 PM
I find stuff to review, I review it, then I tend never to listen to it again. That seems wrong to me. I should be listening to stuff, loving it, and begging to review it. (Same with hating something.)


isnt that just what critics do? its work. and now, when there is so much new music you know about, and feel compelled/influenced to seek out, its just more work.

(i still havent heard the frank ocean album, but i keep thinking i really need to - why exactly im not sure, everything ive read signals it as important, though is that the same as good?)

not to dis crack, cos it has put me onto various stuff i might not have heard otherwise, but there is something about the writing often that seems... definitely not loveless, but not that 'bold' about what it is saying. maybe its harder to feel confident about making big statements in 2016.

Corpsey
14-10-2016, 05:10 PM
I dunno if other critics do but I tend to just cos generally speaking I don't listen to all that much new music. I listen to a lot of old music, and in all different sorts of genres. But I've established myself as a hip hop writer so I'm generally called on to review hip hop. At the time I first got asked I was reallyyy into new hip-hop, was listening to loads of mixtapes, etc. Also was unemployed, which helped.

I tend to think that all this thinking about and writing about and reading about music sort of ruined music for me. Not permanently, but it puts you in a weird frame of mind when listening to things. You forget the pleasure principle.

CrowleyHead
15-10-2016, 03:44 PM
Does it?