“Learning ways to listen”

Mark Sinker, in Freaky Trigger, reviews Marcello Carlin‘s Blue in the Air:

If this is a book about discovering that love is always still possible, it’s as much a book about about learning ways to listen — delicate, uncertain, stubborn, conflicted, often as thick with resignation as curiosity — which are also ways to trust: unlearning half the anti-listening habits salted into standard lines and critical dismissals, certainly, where trust and generosity are verboten, and despised; where cynicism is endlessly confused with acuity. It’s about elements in music and listening that good critics certainly use, but very often fail to pass on — elements present in music inside and outside fashion, music facing backwards, music facing forwards, music sadly hunkering down in some soon-to-be-razed-and-developed locale, music blithely drifting through the foolish heroic amazed unawareness of new love. Elements musicians recognise in the skill of their bones, from every background and tendency, but decline to discuss, because there isn’t the language — because if there was they wouldn’t be musicians…

[More on Blue in the Air]

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