Links To Better Review Sites than This One
Because I'm Totally 100% Unoriginal
To be honest, I don't read too many review sites regularly, but these kind folks make up the heart of the Web Reviewing Community (WRC), and are working hard to bring you pleasure in a legal manner. Please take a few hours and check out:
Prindle's Review Site Mark's site is not only one of the first, one of the biggest, it's by far the funniest and best rock 'n' roll record review sites I've ever found. I also agree with a lot of his reviews, at least the later ones. It's the site that inspired me to try to start up my own review page. Added bonus: Mark's really into indie rock a lot more than I am, so you may want to mosey on over if you swing on that side of the fence. Also, you can submit your own review pages if you want, which is where me 'n George got started, but the list of free artists is growing smaller and smaller every week. And, Mark's OCD forces him to collect everything by an artist, while my extreme laziness and financial retarditude frequently leaves my artist reviews with a hole here and there. What are you waiting for? Get on over to Mark's page already! I'm just a shameful pretender to Mark's throne! I'm a fraud! AAAAGH!
Only Solitaire: George Starostin's Music Reviews, one of the originals and best, with the largest number of artists reviewed and tons of information available on each, has now been resuscitated from the dead after almost a year in exile by Mr. Starostin. The man is simply a machine of a reviewer, has a catalog of writing far larger than probably the rest of us combined, and has done more listening and thinking about pop music than, well, probably most people in the Universe. Do yourself a favor and spend several weeks of online time catching up with this man's work.
COSMICBEN RECORD REVIEWS Is another 'nice' site, growing slowly but steadily and run by another one of the more established folks in the busin...er, hobby.
Creative Noise by Brian Burks was one of the original three record review sites with Prindle and W&A, but unfortunately has reached the end of its run some months back. Brian amassed a large selection of artists and has a nice 'middling' style between W&A-esque brevity and Starostin, erm, lack thereof and frequently makes very good points about the music he covers. Problem is that he also has some very strong biases against stuff like prog rock (and puffed up classic rock in general), and tends to really overrate power pop. He's the power pop guy! He never reviewed Pink Floyd! His site is dead, but lives on in archiveland thanks to the diligence of George Starostin.
Disclaimer Music Reviews is another 'bits and pieces' review site of a large number of mostly modern artists but not too many albums by each one. Run by a couple of jokesters Jenny Rydins and Chris 'Willie' Williams, this site's got some entertainment value, baby!
Music Junkies Anonynous by Nick Karn, but featuring a cast of a thousand reviewers, was the first site to innovate the use of a truly 'communal' reviewing atmosphere where just about anyone can send in a review. That means each album may have several writeups, and you can pick and choose whose opinions you want to listen to. Oftentimes could be better written or edited, and certainly less fanboyish, but hey...it's democratic!
Steve and Abe's Album Reviews by Steve Knowlton and his young 'un Abe was the first site to feature an infant reviewer, so I had to go out and get one myself. Now Steve has strong opinions and often dislikes a lot of stuff (one frequently wonders what exactly he does like) but can pull a zinger once in awhile. Abe gurgles and adds color commentary. Some odd reviewing choices (Corey Hart?), which may interest you, and very incomplete discographies, but still worth a visit or three.
Sam Ulward's Record Reviews is another 'Community' project with lots and lots of prog reviews for you and a clearly George-ist stance and format , is pretty decent and has a bunch of good stuff for you to read. Could be a bit more entertaining, but that's just me, the Jerky Dirty Record Reviewer.
Ben's Review Site is a new one in the summer of '02, and strangely the guy has reviewed everything I've reviewed lately. Almost. Some good writing and we'll see how he does when he runs out of favorite bands and has to do stuff like Foreigner. Whee!
Scott's Rock and Soul Album Reviews Has staked out a nice ol' spread in a previously underutilized segment of the WRC, the soul review, and has a tenaciousness and high standard that makes me proud to share the Community with him. He's also a fantastically kind dude...I suggest you check out his site and see how his opinions match your own, and see how many of the darn things he has! It's astounding!
John McFerrin's Review Site Bad ol' me, I actually just discovered this site, which has, without a doubt, the definitive progressive rock review archive in the WRC (outside George's site, of course). And while he sometimes (in my opinion) goes a little off the deep end in his praise for Genesis, his writing is really some of the highest quality use of English words and phrases I've encountered, and that ain't not no bull, neither.
Guy's Music Review Site I'm totally jealous of Guy's web programming, which make mine look like the dundering hackings of an idiot savant and his pet gorilla who likes kittens, which is actually more or less the truth. This site is far more professionally executed and maintained than the WRC has any right to have, and I'm impressed with how well he's kept up the pace. Guy's page is quickly becoming one of the more solid ones in the WRC, and I'd like to say I was proud to witness its birth!
Wilson and Alroy's Record Reviews Honestly I don't like this site very much (at all! Alroy's an asshole and both of them are dull as dishwater), but hell, these guys really were first and have amassed a truly impressive catalog of (really short) reviews. I think they like to totally trash some 'classic' artists just for the fun of it, which can be annoying, and they only review 'bargain bin specials' so there's lots of trash in there too. And they're not funny. And they care much more about their stupid reviewing rules and the album's Billboard placement and who is producing and lineup changes than, you know, whether the album is good or not (which, surprise! according to them it usually isn't). So, hey, fuck this one.
The All-Music Guide If you'd like to read about every album ever, go here. They've recently updated their site, for the vast detriment of anyone who cares about having a page load in less than 5 minutes, and the reviews and ratings are as inconsistent as they are retarded. Still, though, the exhaustive discographies and biographical information are hard to beat.
Rolling Stone Yeah Yeah Yeah, we're all supposed to hate Rolling Stone and everything, but they stuck up all of their old archived reviews from the 1960's and 70's and they're a hoot. Reading how much they loved Yes' Close to the Edge, then totally rip them undeservedly on Relayer 2 years later (after prog totally lost its fashion) shows they've always been trend-following bandwagon-jumping whores for their entire 30-odd year history. If only they would post old Creem reviews from the early 70's, now they were funny.
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