Bad reviews?

Hiya ladies and gents,

A publication in my fine city does an annual review of demos submitted by local musicians. So I submitted the CD that my garage-rock band recorded last year.

I won't bore you with the whole review, just the part that says "Plenty of amazing punk bands didn't know how to play their instruments and still sounded great. But these guys don't know how to play their instruments and they suck ass."

It's okay to laugh, really. I did :)

Any stories about bad reviews you've gotten, and how you reacted?

CV
 

rtliquid

Senior Member
I'm puzzled by the statement "didn't know how to play their instruments and still sounded great." I'm not sure how that's possible. To me, that kinda qualifies the reviewer as a total dumb-ass.
 

PQleyR

Platinum Member
Probably means those bands didn't actually play on the records!

Someone posted this absolutely amazing comment on our Angus McFife video earlier today:

"It's difficult to believe that as a species trying to progress, we still have adult neanderthals leaning toward kids culture like this bulls*** song/video. You are the part of our species holding progress back, like the medieval backwards people that you are."

I'd much prefer someone was that incensed than that they thought it was boring.
 

rtliquid

Senior Member
So my tale of woe .... I played in a classic rock cover band, fairly popular, county-wide. We put out an all-original cd. The rhythm guitarist was too nervous to record and the bass player preferred fishing to studio time, so the lead vocalist/guitarist (who was better anyway) covered all of the parts except drums) . I should also mention that he was a self-proclaimed guitar god - ego so big that we had to make room for it on stage. Well, the review comments were along the lines of "typical bar-band", "too much guitar", "mediocre".

I guess the worst part for me was that we secured an interview on an internet radio station (I think it was an hour-long program). They played the cd in its entirety, talked to the guitarist/vocalist, and listeners could call in. Anybody who called in would get a free cd. NOBODY called in. NOBODY.

On the upside, it has sold internationally though, so yay for me.
 

MonkeysFly

Junior Member
Funny thing. This brings back a fond memory for myself. When I was ina an all original band thru the 90's, my band submitted demos to local magazines and newspapers that accepted original material for review. Well, this one time we had submitted a demo package to a NYC local scene music magazine called "Rock Pile". The reviewer tore us apart!! He mentioned how we were rip offs of this band and that band, yadda, yadda, yadda...Just a bad review. Well, two weeks later my singer got a phone message from a Don Lecterman at Polygram Records. He said he read the review in Rock Pile and wanted us to send him some material. We practically krapped our pants!! My buddy called him back and talked to him to get a feel for what he was looking for. He just said to send him whatever we had. So we did. Eh needless to say a few weeks later we got a letter back from him saying thank you, but it wasn't what he was looking for. That was the ONLY time we ever had a major label (or ANY) listen to our music. But for those few weeks, man, were we on cloud nine!!......
 

Anon La Ply

Renegade
Ben, congrats on getting hate on the Tube. It's like childhood ... even negative attention is better than none. Some of my old bands were mauled in the local music press.

I still remember the one who said that everything we did had a touch of dirge. Apparently that was considered a bad thing by the Rolling stone wannabe critic ... there's a lot of pretentious people out there who put down others to boost themselves. All's fair in love and war!
 

lefty2

Platinum Member
Probably means those bands didn't actually play on the records!

Someone posted this absolutely amazing comment on our Angus McFife video earlier today:

"It's difficult to believe that as a species trying to progress, we still have adult neanderthals leaning toward kids culture like this bulls*** song/video. You are the part of our species holding progress back, like the medieval backwards people that you are."

I'd much prefer someone was that incensed than that they thought it was boring.
Wow that's crazy. I watched your video yesterday and loved it. Each to their own I guess.
 

Andy

Administrator
Staff member
I'd much prefer someone was that incensed than that they thought it was boring.
Exactly, the "Sex Pistols" effect!

No big deal Ben, your stuff is taking off big time. Perhaps the guy who posted that comment would care to post a link to his considerably better & forward thinking band!
 

Naigewron

Platinum Member
I'm puzzled by the statement "didn't know how to play their instruments and still sounded great." I'm not sure how that's possible. To me, that kinda qualifies the reviewer as a total dumb-ass.
He's referring to how many bands in the punk genre basically had no idea about technique, chord names, reading music or anything like that. They knew a few simple chords and basically just used those for every song, strumming them wildly every step of the way.
 

Red Menace

Platinum Member
I played at a dilapidated hipster art-gallery downtown about a year ago. We received a brief mention in the writeup that was only published in the local paper's website. The brief review really wasn't un-favorable but they did say that our piano player sang off-key and that the male drummer (that'd be me) sang slight more on key that kid bandmate.

I took offense to that because our piano player has perfect pitch and I have a terrible musical ear, I make her help me find the lower pitch between lugs when I'm tuning my drums. That clown really needs to brush up on his musical terminology if he want to write about bands. Although he say I use "Snappy, snare heavy beats" that's me.
 

ggmerino

Senior Member
Wow that's crazy. I watched your video yesterday and loved it. Each to their own I guess.
More wizards! More unicorns!! More swords!!! I am now officially a GloryHammer fan (no kidding)- loved the video. I think the singer should wear a crown along with the green knight armor.
 

toddbishop

Platinum Member
"Plenty of amazing punk bands didn't know how to play their instruments and still sounded great. But these guys don't know how to play their instruments and they suck ass."
Are punk bands after good reviews now? I always thought the idea was to have normal rock writers hate you. And for actual punk writers, being unfairly negative was practically the whole point. Usually they exercise some creativity in it, though, and on that front this guy fails. He thinks he's being punk by saying 'suck a__', but they say that in couples movies now. He probably heard it watching, I don't know, the latest Paul Rudd movie with his mom.
 

brady

Platinum Member
Are punk bands after good reviews now? I always thought the idea was to have normal rock writers hate you. And for actual punk writers, being unfairly negative was practically the whole point. Usually they exercise some creativity in it, though, and on that front this guy fails. He thinks he's being punk by saying 'suck a__', but they say that in couples movies now. He probably heard it watching, I don't know, the latest Paul Rudd movie with his mom.
My thoughts too.

But that review reminded me of the scene in Spinal Tap where they were talking about their album reviews. Especially the part where he says, "The review for "Shark Sandwich" was merely a two word review..." Funny stuff.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
So is it better to have a bad write up, or no write up at all? I think it was Monk who said talking about music is like dancing about architecture. Even successful people have just as many people who hate them. Look no further than Lady Gaga.
But sucking ass? That's brutal. You have to spread them cheeks really wide to get a good suction going lol
 

K.Howden

Senior Member
Hmm, I've never seen the point in reviews, good or bad.

I don't agree with the fact that one person's opinion, on something that is inherently subjective as music is, should be used to influence the opinion of others. Just because one writer for a magazine says they don't like a band or such like shouldn't influence people to avoid listening to something, just as much as that same writer liking a band or such like shouldn't influence people to listen to it.

It outlines a big problem today, which is that less and less people use their own ears and their own sense of discovery to find new artists to listen to, rather they'd much sooner follow the crowd and the general consensus to determine what they listen to.

Maybe a slightly odd opinion or way of looking at it, but there we go!

Hope everyone is well,

Kev
 
Are punk bands after good reviews now? I always thought the idea was to have normal rock writers hate you. ... He thinks he's being punk by saying 'suck a__', but they say that in couples movies now. He probably heard it watching, I don't know, the latest Paul Rudd movie with his mom.
Ha, love this!

Thanks for everyone's input -- and I'm glad Brady referenced the review of Spinal Tap's "Shark Sandwich" ... that's pretty much the first thing that popped into my head when I read our "s*ck @ss" review :)

I'm thinking of emailing the reviewer about our show this coming Friday, and inviting him to see/hear us "s*ck @ss" in person :)

Cheers,
CV
 

Chromium

Senior Member
I played in a band once that within a pretty good review overall in a local paper was the phrase "...not so much a wall of sound than an avalanche of noise." Made us laugh at the time.
 
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