Robert Christgau: He Needs Us, We Need Him (podcast)

Join Phil Dellio, Steven Rubio, and myself as we spend two hours gabbing about Robert Christgau and his recently published memoir, Going Into the City: Portrait of a Critic as a Young Man. Not surprisingly — given how these things usually go — City is a springboard for a wide-ranging conversation that also delves into the Consumer Guide and Christgau’s influence in general, along with … Continue reading Robert Christgau: He Needs Us, We Need Him (podcast)

Summer Fun with The Dean x 3

1. The Dean lands ass first in, of all places, Billboard. Yes–a new column. Anyone wondering how that guy who grades albums like a damn college professor got a column in the bible of the music business should consider one factoid. At 72, that guy has been covering what we’ll call rock and roll longer than anyone in America: 47 years, and not bored for … Continue reading Summer Fun with The Dean x 3

Gaseous Logic vs. Christgau’s Consensus

Problems & Perspectives #2 Gaseous Logic vs. Christgau’s Consensus —————- By Beppe Colli May 14, 2014 —————- Beppe Colli at Clouds and Clocks responds at length to the post-Pazz and Jop free-for-all that transpired here a couple months ago. (I don’t want to quote from Beppe’s piece because I truthfully haven’t waded through it all yet, but I wanted to put it out there for your perusal.)   Continue reading Gaseous Logic vs. Christgau’s Consensus

From the Archives: Robert Christgau (2002)

Answers From the Dean: Online Exchange with Robert Christgau (August 2002) The second in our hopefully continuing series of online exchanges features Village Voice Senior Editor, Robert Christgau. Thanks to all the readers who sent in questions, to Tom Sawyer for invaluable editorial assistance, and of course to Robert Christgau for answering an astounding number of reader queries (I stopped counting somewhere around 75). On that note, there were, … Continue reading From the Archives: Robert Christgau (2002)

Silly Wars Cool Down

…it may well be true that Sgt. Pepper is more bound to a moment than in a lot of the Beatles’ earlier music. The postadolescent philosophizing and premusicianly jamming of some of this music sounds silly now. But if the energy of early rock and roll is bound up in the realization of personal autonomy, this music is about beginning to discover that autonomy carries … Continue reading Silly Wars Cool Down

“Making rock criticism safe for theory”

Bill Marx, in Fuse, reviews Devon Powers‘s Writing the Record: The Village Voice and the Birth of Rock Criticism. Here and there Writing the Record lives up to its billing as a provocative examination of Village Voice critics as reflectors on as well as reflections of the intersection of popular music, the rise of hype, and left-wing politics during the ‘60s and beyond. But overall … Continue reading “Making rock criticism safe for theory”

Abiding Disenchantment & Vexed Concepts

[Goldstein] was and presumably still is a man whose capacious enthusiasms leave him vulnerable to big disappointments. He was so disenchanted with Utopia’s failure to materialize that he bailed on being a rock critic six months before Woodstock. Not many people today even remember he was one, let alone the earliest influential one. Voice readers of my generation probably associate him far more with the … Continue reading Abiding Disenchantment & Vexed Concepts

Open the Door, Richard

Pitchfork: The first column at The Voice to do this with music was Richard Goldstein’s “Pop Eye”. He wasn’t there for very long, but he developed a unique way to approach music intellectually and enthusiastically at the same time. DP: Goldstein started writing at The Village Voice in 1966, after finishing his masters in journalism at Columbia. He wanted to write about pop with a capital P: It’s mass culture, it’s … Continue reading Open the Door, Richard

New Devon Powers book on history of rock criticism

Revisiting the work of early pop critics such as Richard Goldstein and Robert Christgau, Powers shows how they stood at the front lines of the mass culture debates, challenging old assumptions and hierarchies and offering pioneering political and social critiques of the music. Part of a college-educated generation of journalists, Voice critics explored connections between rock and contemporary intellectual trends such as postmodernism, identity politics, … Continue reading New Devon Powers book on history of rock criticism