Archive for December, 2009
To start off my blog – the non-critic critic site for all music – I am going to start easy on myself. I only have a vague idea of what I’m doing, so I might as well start with my favorite album of all time. It has been for well over a decade, for its perfection, energy and emotion; Metallica’s Metallica, or “The Black Album.”
From its opening, “Enter Sandman”, through its ending with “The Struggle Within”, it’s one brilliantly well-crafted tale of angst, sadness, despair and ferocity. Songs like “Sad But True” and “Holier Than Thou” are the essence of aggression in heavy metal, but it doesn’t lame out with a song that repeats the same thing. I see it as a perfect puzzle of all of these emotions; all songs with similar feeling and blitzkrieg, but told differently each time. No song sounds redundantly like any other on the album, a tough achievement for any artist. It’s like twelve different puncture wounds with a dagger constructed with a perfectly-edged blade. Softer stabs with storytelling, intense ballads like “The Unforgiven” and “Nothing Else Matters”, my favorite song of all time, go perfectly well with the darker bites of “My Friend of Misery” and “Of Wolf And Man.”
It’s like in Dexter, when the title character sees a perfect murder with a perfect, and in his eyes artistic, way of completing the act, he can only stand in admiration. That’s how I feel about Metallica; simple without draining their creative intelligence, heavy without overdoing it like they had done a little to their predecessor …And Justice For All, and final without missing a single edge. It’s the height of hard rock and heavy metal at its finest; true to its roots, but enjoyable for anyone and everyone. A matchless record, and one of the best of all time.
An ear for music is very different from a taste for music. I have no ear whatever; I could not sing an air to save my life; but I have the intensest delight in music, and can detect good from bad.
My original reason to write this blog was to build up a writing portfolio for a writing career I so deeply desire. I transformed that into a site about expressions, feelings and social situations that people have, the ‘mask’ they wear, and how many of us hide ourselves to a fault, or almost to a fault. I then brought my passions into the blog, referencing these thoughts and feelings; baseball and music. It became a kaleidoscope of how people are, act, and feel, and how that’s associated with things that I love. I haven’t loved that fusion, and I no longer enjoyed it and how unfocused it’s been. It’s one of the biggest reasons why I haven’t written on here as frequently as I once did. The other part of that was just a lack of inspiration, and I think the inward struggle I had with myself on here was a big cause of that.
So, I start over. I thought about what I wanted to write about, and thought of only that alone. I don’t want to impress myself, or force anything I’m not inspired to write. I thought about what I’d simply enjoy doing, which is what I thought to do in the first place before I got all jumbled up.
I don’t enjoy most music critics; I don’t even enjoy reading the words of most pop culture writers in general, because I always see a sale behind everything. Peter Gammons, Paul Gargano, Craig Calcaterra and Rob Neyer are the only people in the online writing world I truly enjoy and actually truly love.
So I decided to make a music critic site on my terms; albums I may or may not listen to as a fan, albums from yesteryear or from today. I may even just dissect a song at a time. I truly don’t know. What I know is; I’d enjoy this, I’d be passionate about it, and the idea wouldn’t be to sell anything to anybody; it’d be more about understanding the musician, what they were trying to do, and if I enjoyed its end result or not. I’m doing this for me, and I couldn’t be more excited.
So, stay tuned.