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Author Topic: What's your favorite music review site?  (Read 17356 times)

talley

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What's your favorite music review site?
« on: 21 Feb 2011, 17:45 »

Every time I google "indie review site" pitchfork and the like come up.
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JD

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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #1 on: 21 Feb 2011, 18:30 »

Tinymixtapes or Allmusic.

Tinymixtapes has the best reviews. Allmusic is nice just for the sheer amount of music it reviews.
« Last Edit: 21 Feb 2011, 18:37 by JD »
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #2 on: 21 Feb 2011, 19:47 »

Depends. Every site's got its good writers and bad writers, but overall I really enjoy the music section of TMT (their film section tends toward horseshit, unfortunately). P4k's editorials are generally well thought out and, if nothing else, their criticism is entirely free of the shitshow aspects it sometimes had when it was new and brash. Popmatters is usually pretty okay and sometimes they write something really good.

Since I'm a big electronic dude, I frequent Resident Advisor's review section and FACT Magazine pretty frequently.

If contrarianism and MFA-flexin' are your thing, head on down to Cokemachineglow, who have inherited all the snobbishness of P4k's youth but haven't gained much notoriety, yet. They seem to take great pleasure in naysaying - they made a point of singling out Deerhunter as the worst band of the year back when Microcastle came out and floored every other music publication (they gave Halcyon Digest an 80%, so I guess it stopped being fun), and their latest project seems to be Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All. Observe -
Quote
I seen it. Dudes got dumb all over the stage, like yelling at Jimmy Fallon and shit; we had fun. But such hype carries with it an air of well-fed sycophancy. There is, to be sure, nothing dangerous or even offensive about Odd Future; the continued suggestion that their music is somehow a “challenging” or “amoral” listen undercuts actually challenging music, not to mention actual amorality. You know what’s challenging? Noah23 is fucking challenging. But anyway. I can’t stand in the way of a good myth. Nor can I do much to ease the tide of hyperbole, or the faux-handwringing of a nattering, faintly hip-hop-literate media intrigue diligently discussing @tylerhashtag’s latest rape gag, mostly so they themselves have an excuse to re-make said rape gag (here’s one: “Your mom’s a bitch so I ripped her fucking tonsils out / Ski-mask and switchblade, waiting until prom gets out.” I just made that up!), or so they can say the word “swag” again. Because that’s funny, see: they wouldn’t normally get to say “swag.” Just as Lil’ B recycles Gucci’s (and so Wayne’s) eccentricity without bothering to ground it in any notion of aesthetic merit, so too does Odd Future recast the wild menace of the Wu-Tang Clan as an affectation to be worn for laffs, forgetting so far to produce any good rap music to accompany it. But I may just be old-fashioned. Who knows.

This was brought to you by G-Side’s new album, which is excellent, by the way, and Pusha T’s new single, which sounds like the fucking apocalypse. In a cool way.

So yeah, don't read that rag.
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David_Dovey

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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #3 on: 21 Feb 2011, 19:55 »

[email protected] Wu-Tang comparison
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #4 on: 21 Feb 2011, 20:44 »

I was reading cokemachineglow when it was still good. Then it became unbearably shit and nauseatingly defensive about the fact that it was shit and I stopped reading it.

I think they may collectively have taken on too much of a coke machine glow, if you know what I mean.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #5 on: 21 Feb 2011, 21:08 »

Tinymixtapes is fucking unbearable. The only thing mildly passable on their entire website is the odd satire (?). I like AV Club, but not being totally music-centric is a minus.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #6 on: 21 Feb 2011, 21:14 »

Oh yeah, the TMT news section is always like that. Their reviews rarely, if ever, are.

Although I think they did break the Swans reunion story.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #7 on: 21 Feb 2011, 21:18 »

It's not extensive, and they don't really cover obscure bands, but I dig Sputnikmusic.com. And their reviews don't leave me wondering what their opinion of the album actually is.
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scarred

Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #8 on: 21 Feb 2011, 21:57 »

Stereogum's reviews are infrequent but generally well thought-out.
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ThePianoMan

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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #9 on: 21 Feb 2011, 22:11 »

Oh yeah, the TMT news section is always like that. Their reviews rarely, if ever, are.
Yeah, they're generally pretty solid on reviews. Their review of Untrue was downright embarrassing, though, and their year-end lists tend to be on the wrong side of the line between quirky and batshit.

I like FACT a lot--factmag.com. Very slanted towards British stuff, especially the electronic scene, but I can't think of any other site that so consistently introduces me to awesome stuff I wouldn't have listened to otherwise.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #10 on: 21 Feb 2011, 22:16 »

It's not extensive, and they don't really cover obscure bands, but I dig Sputnikmusic.com. And their reviews don't leave me wondering what their opinion of the album actually is.
I dig their "everyone and their dog can write a review" approach.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #11 on: 22 Feb 2011, 01:43 »

Song, by Toad if you like folk music is really good, also if you're Scottish and live in Edinburgh he does a 'best of what you need to see this week.'

Also, a fan of The Line of Best Fit, and Indieshuffle once in a while.



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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #12 on: 22 Feb 2011, 07:42 »

I read The Silent Ballet because they review albums most other sites don't and it's a good source of info on post-rock and the like but the reviews are rarely very good. They vary in quality pretty drastically. I also like Foxy Digitalis which has infrequent and short reviews that are generally well written and focus on pretty obscure stuff (releases from random cassette labels and the like)
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #13 on: 22 Feb 2011, 09:38 »

Oh yeah, the TMT news section is always like that. Their reviews rarely, if ever, are.
Yeah, they're generally pretty solid on reviews. Their review of Untrue was downright embarrassing, though, and their year-end lists tend to be on the wrong side of the line between quirky and batshit.

I like FACT a lot--factmag.com. Very slanted towards British stuff, especially the electronic scene, but I can't think of any other site that so consistently introduces me to awesome stuff I wouldn't have listened to otherwise.

Just tried factmag, and looked at their Radiohead review - jeez it was bad. Utterly unfocused, jumping from hither to thither was zero sense of purpose and far more interested in talking about Radiohead than the actual album. Reminded me of the worst type of Pitchfork review.

Speaking of, I think they have actually improved in the last few years. By no means perfect, but they've cut the bullshit reviews and the general standard of writing is a lot higher than it used to be. Plus they have Joe Tangari, who I adore for his fantastic introduction to Afrobeat and his reviews of obscure compilation CD's.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #14 on: 22 Feb 2011, 11:15 »

Shameless self-promotion.

http://hearwaxmedia.com/

Also, Pitchfork has some good writers and some bad ones. I'll still read reviews there from time to time.
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scarred

Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #15 on: 22 Feb 2011, 12:16 »

The only thing that really bothers me about Pitchfork, besides their more avid readers and their tendency for ridiculous hyperbole, is their rating system. Often I'll read a review that's almost entirely positive, but an album will have a 6.9 or 7.3.

Also does anyone know how their stupid Best New Music thing works? I can't figure it out. It usually goes to albums that get 8.0>, right? So why does it seem arbitrary? I keep seeing 8.1s and 8.4s but no BNM.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #16 on: 22 Feb 2011, 12:20 »

It's their arbitrary stamp of approval. It's the "go ahead and talk about this at LES parties" designation.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #17 on: 22 Feb 2011, 14:34 »

Haha, I saw a chick walk out of a record store not too long ago, with every LP that Pitchfork had on their Best New Music. Not to mention, that same record store sold a record I saw at a show for 20 bucks for over 40.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #18 on: 22 Feb 2011, 14:42 »

...was it That's Entertainment in Worcester?

God their prices are horrid.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #19 on: 22 Feb 2011, 15:44 »

Haha, I saw a chick walk out of a record store not too long ago, with every LP that Pitchfork had on their Best New Music. Not to mention, that same record store sold a record I saw at a show for 20 bucks for over 40.

How did she carry hundreds of records at a time?
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #20 on: 22 Feb 2011, 16:04 »

There are three records on the front page at any given point.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #21 on: 22 Feb 2011, 16:18 »

to be fair to her, two of the three records currently on the front page under BNM are actually really fantastic
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #22 on: 22 Feb 2011, 17:03 »

Haha, I saw a chick walk out of a record store not too long ago, with every LP that Pitchfork had on their Best New Music. Not to mention, that same record store sold a record I saw at a show for 20 bucks for over 40.

How did she carry hundreds of records at a time?

I forgot to add "at the time", ma bad.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #23 on: 22 Feb 2011, 17:25 »

to be fair to her, two of the three records currently on the front page under BNM are actually really fantastic

Usually, at least half a years best new music is hipster tastemaking bullshit.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #24 on: 23 Feb 2011, 15:42 »

I like Drowned in Sound and The Quietus. Also Caught by the River has good music writing, although it is mostly about fishing and the countryside. They release good free compilations as well, particularly their Birdsong series which was a series of compilations with songs about birds.

Generally when I read those three sites I don't want to punch a hole in the computer screen, which can only be a good thing.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #25 on: 23 Feb 2011, 16:03 »

Forgot about Quietus! Quality site.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #26 on: 23 Feb 2011, 18:22 »

Caught by the River

Caught By the River is a beautiful site and everyone should read it.

Hell, I should read it more fully than I do (usually I just flick through the weekly email updates).
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #27 on: 23 Feb 2011, 19:02 »

The only thing that really bothers me about Pitchfork, besides their more avid readers and their tendency for ridiculous hyperbole, is their rating system. Often I'll read a review that's almost entirely positive, but an album will have a 6.9 or 7.3.

Also does anyone know how their stupid Best New Music thing works? I can't figure it out. It usually goes to albums that get 8.0>, right? So why does it seem arbitrary? I keep seeing 8.1s and 8.4s but no BNM.

I've thought about this a lot, and came to the conclusion that what makes sense is the one reviewer reviews it and gives it a score, and then if it's pretty good (8 or higher or whatever) they maybe ask the other reviewers to listen to it and then they agree on if it's BNM-worthy or not.  At least this is what I would do.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #29 on: 24 Feb 2011, 17:11 »

oh also Said the Gramophone and 20jazzfunkgreats are pretty much all I read.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #30 on: 25 Feb 2011, 22:17 »

I'm a fan of Sputnik if only because of a few reviewers there and the community ratings letting you know exactly who rated what. Find some people who rate things the way you would and follow their ratings = you find good music.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #31 on: 26 Feb 2011, 12:09 »

http://www.furious.com/perfect/

and metal archives, I guess
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #32 on: 26 Feb 2011, 12:27 »

Just tried factmag, and looked at their Radiohead review - jeez it was bad. Utterly unfocused, jumping from hither to thither was zero sense of purpose and far more interested in talking about Radiohead than the actual album. Reminded me of the worst type of Pitchfork review.
Hmm? Specifically discusses over half the tracks in some detail, contextualizes the album in terms of their discography, even talks about the production texture. Dislike it if you want, fine, but it's a load of crap to say it doesn't talk about the actual album.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #33 on: 28 Feb 2011, 09:04 »

I was reading cokemachineglow when it was still good. Then it became unbearably shit and nauseatingly defensive about the fact that it was shit and I stopped reading it.

I think they may collectively have taken on too much of a coke machine glow, if you know what I mean.

As someone who was stoked at the opportunity to write for Cokemachineglow but hasn't heard back from his editor in over 2 weeks I will agree with this.

Anyways I will echo that Tiny Mix Tapes has well written record reviews that usually have more actual review-substance than places like Pitchfork. I also frequent most of the blogs in the Altered Zones crowd, but I'm a little biased since I write for Visitation Rites.
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Re: What's your favorite music review site?
« Reply #34 on: 08 Aug 2012, 19:23 »

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