On the “Pernicious Rise of Poptimism”

“Poptimism now not only demands devotion to pop idols; it has instigated an increasingly shrill shouting match with those who might not be equally enamored of pop music. Disliking Taylor Swift or Beyoncé is not just to proffer a musical opinion, but to reveal potential proof of bias. Hardly a week goes by in music-critic land without such accusations flying to and fro.” – Saul … Continue reading On the “Pernicious Rise of Poptimism”

Singles Jukebox Comment Competition

The Singles Jukebox turned five this week, and to celebrate this achievement, they’re having a contest: “So for the next three weeks, we’re having a comment competition! The best comment on any entry posted this year will win a $30 iTunes voucher, or equivalent… The competition closes at 11.59pm Friday April 4, U.S. Eastern time. So think long and hard, put fingers to keyboard and … Continue reading Singles Jukebox Comment Competition

Pet Shop Boys, Critically (4)

In light of recent and future Pet Shop Boys podcasts around here, this post from a couple years ago is probably worth a revisit — Neil Tennant Recalls Smash Hits Days in Word Magazine Podcast (the podcast is still available) — but even better is this interesting BBC program from 2012 on the same topic, which someone posted for our listening pleasure at YouTube. Continue reading Pet Shop Boys, Critically (4)

The Priests of RockThink

It has always been hard for the priests of RockThink to deal with punk in any manner other than ideological; this is why the Sex Pistols go down in history as somehow more valuable than the Buzzcocks.) An almost unlistenable triple LP dedicated to a communist revolutionary government (The Clash’s Sandinista!) means more to those who write the histories than an unspeakably gorgeous #1 pop … Continue reading The Priests of RockThink

The last gasp of true Top 40

There was one brief and somewhat tarnished moment during my adolescence — somewhere around 1966-1967 — in which I couldn’t distinguish between the inherent value of the Velvet Underground versus the Monkees or Frank Zappa & the Mothers of Invention and Paul Revere & the Raiders. That confession is not alarming in view of my age (13 going on 14), but consider the circumstances and … Continue reading The last gasp of true Top 40

Buzz and Joy under the influence of

In truth, by criticising pop music NME are merely biting the hand that feeds them. Pop music as every person who’s gone from clutching a copy of Madonna’s Immaculate Collection to owning Sonic Youth’s Dirty can attest, is a gateway drug. Once you’re hooked by that excitement, that buzz and that joy of being fan you can go either way: maybe you’ll experiment, check out … Continue reading Buzz and Joy under the influence of