Friday, February 4, 2011

No more ratings.

So I took away the "scores" for each review. I talked with another friend who does a lot of music writing and we both discussed the problems with these number systems. When doing a system that goes from 1-10 with the options of .5 in there as well, you have a 20 point spread for every release. I love a lot of what I review and I was giving a lot of 8.5, 9.0 and 10.0 to many releases and while they were all very good, I think I was scoring on my enthusiasm level for the release as opposed to the artistic acheivements of some releases. Is a cassette that i give a 10 to really as good as Reign in Blood? Is a 9.5 as good or better than Merzbow's "Pulse Demon"? Probably not. While I love that Thou cassette and listen to it often, can I really say that it is better than Slint's "Spiderland"? Probably not. While my writing is not the best music journalism you have ever read I think you get a pretty good idea of how I feel about each release without a number coloring the entire review. Let me know how you feel about this. I may need to come up with some sort of scoring for these cassettes but in the meantime please enjoy. I will be posting a bunch of reviews this week but i have to warn you, they are probably all 10s.


  1. Scoring is always difficult but in music journalism many publications (both online and paper) require ratings of some sort. When the online publication polled our readership (a couple of times actually), we found that the majority of people do actually look for the number rating.

    On a related note, I have the same conundrum that you do when reviewing records as my enthusiasm level certainly factors into the equation; seeing as how many records there are out there to review though, it makes sense to review what you like and are excited about given the chance.

    The short of it... I certainly enjoy reading what you write so far (numbers or not).

  2. Thanks for the feedback. I have been thinking about this a lot this week. I think I may go back to a rating system but do a five point system with no half points anywhere. I think that may work out. It's broad enough to allow interpretations of a 5 to mean "the best of the best" and "pretty darn good" at the same time. I assume that is why big internet sites (netflix, yelp, amazon, etc...) all use a five point system. I am still thinking. I have so many tapes to write about this week and they are all pretty rad. Still Still, Moon Knight, Austerity... my plate is full.

  3. No problem. I think your new ratings look good so far.

    I think the Austerity is great and can't wait to see what you think about it.