Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Current obsession.

Current obsession.

Blowing off "important" reading and impulsively ordering one 33 1/3 book after another. I'm finding the earlier ones are far more boring / formulaic / not really offering anything I didn't already know. The later ones are less hit or miss, though you can definitely see the influx of "Pitchforkian writing standards" less than subtly creeping in. The high-water mark of the series that I've encountered thus far is certainly Carl Wilson's Let's Talk About Love: A Journey to the End of Taste -- something I'd recommend to EVERYONE whether you are a music fan or not -- but the one deconstructing Public Enemy's It Takes A Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back is probably my second favorite, if for no other reason than a single paragraph explains why live hip-hop is different than live rock and/or roll at its very base and shouldn't be judged by the same standards because it's not trying to accomplish the same thing.

Should you have the time, and the money, I would also recommend picking up Zaireeka because it's a great look into a band struggling with very fundamental changes (though if you read DeRo's Lips biography it's handled better there so you can skip it unless (like me) you're super into track by track notes) and the study of Pavement's Wowee Zowee isn't perfect (skip the last ten pages or so, seriously) but it does a GREAT job of capturing the feel of the era and peeling back much of the mystique that's settled on that time period in subsequent years.

Anyway, I'm late to this series because I'm old and honestly have been pretty burned out on the "band bio" genre for the last decade or so after gorging myself on 'em for the previous fifteen years, but I'm finding these such quick and delightful little reads right now.


Paul said...

Michelangelo Matos's one on Prince's Sign '☮' The Times is high quality. And I haven't read it yet, but I have every reason to believe that Geeta Dayal's volume on Brian Eno's Another Green World will be really good.

Tankboy said...

The Prince one is definitely on my list of ones I wanna read sooner rather than later!