Ask iAN

Online Spiritual Tech Support

The subject matter is not suitable for some children, nor is it intended for adults ages 18 and over.
While visiting 'Ask Ian' we ask participants to please refrain from using discretion, as it will only make matters worse.

ASK iAN * AN OPEN VULGUR LETTER TO A CRITIC

BRMC-300x297   Specter at the Feast is the sixth album from this long-standing San Franciscan three-piece. With its name alluding to the haunted theme running through the tracks (possibly inspired by the recent loss of bassist Robert Been’s father), the album also calls up spectres of the ’90s with strong overtones of big grunge rock. Slow-burning opening track Fire Walker sets the tone with a steady stride, followed by a successful update of The Call’s 1989 track Let the Day Begin, off which they peel the 80s veneer and add ’90s grunge guitar and all the quality of a U2 anthem. The album quickly begins to feel a bit stodgy with the sombre track Returning, and Lullaby suffers from a metronome-strict rhythm of military snare. But things pick up with the superb Hate the Taste, in which the band funk out with a dirty blues riff and infectious backbeat, but here, as with much of the album, they could afford to let rip more. Perhaps they’re saving that for the live show. The other stand-out track, Rival, sounds similar to begin with but quickly introduces a much grubbier grunge chorus with a bit of the vitriol and gruffness of Nirvana, and soon the comparison with its bluesier neighbour is forgotten, leaving behind a great rock song. The anger ramps up with the racing Teenage Disease, with snarling lyrics “I’m a total waste” and “I’d rather die” – it’s an anthem adolescents will turn up loud but seems a bit out of place on this album. The atmospheric, spiritual Some Kind of Ghost pacifies with its Deep South twang, though more could surely have been made of this track, which finishes before it has really gone anywhere. End track Lose Yourself has a melancholy yearn and a tender touch but is so very long, at 8 minutes 40. It’s not really clear who the album is aimed at, although most of the tracks will certainly go down a storm played loud in a live setting. The recording, though, is slightly underwhelming – more rebellion required. EMMA COOPER -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------COUGH*-------------------------------------------------------------------- Thank You Emma

for that fine piece of sausage, i mean criticism...it was a fine, fine piece indeed...now here's a critique for you.  Perhaps when reviewing a new album you should make sure you post a current photo of the band instead of one from their first album.  It is also good to have a superior mental backlog of references...at least more than yer average butt-rock radio rocker.  You mention that the end track is so very long...but for whom?  Obviously your candy ass attention span, because anybody who loves this band or Spiritualized, know that songs too long by these 2 bands are never long enough, Emma.  You wanna know a song that is too long?  Ho Hey by the Lumineers...Now if i was a "Critic" i would say that it's a song that in this modern day and age of too much traffic, long hours at work, a horrific economy and cell phone static, it's a down to earth song that makes you feel like you are back at summer camp having a sing round the fire...a song full of smiles...a song that holds your hand through the thicket and through the frey like a best friend, or a girlfriend or a good boyfriend...that it's a song that let's you forget your troubles for a little while and feel something like happy again with no screaming guitars but a simple beat and a mild folk jangle guitar strumming anthemique...or some such shite as such...but i wouldn't write about it as iAN, cause then i would just have to hear it from how i hear it...not how i hear it when i think of how others might hear it...and i would say it's a real bankable slab of college hacky'sac horse'shit written by college hippies who fuck other guy's girlfriends at parties while smoking a doobie in a relaxed shirt in the colour of Fruit Stripe gum...the gum with the hokey fat arsed white 1970s horse on it.  A song written by a fan of the circulation editor at KROQ... a song written for money by an insecure future draft dodger wearing flip flops and neck beads and loves clapping...a song that makes my asshole squint tightly shut like a cyclops staring straight into the Sun....or something likes that....and when you toss off your jr. high weight opinions...you don't know what it took from the artist to achieve the making of the record and the lengths they've been through just to make it...cause to you it's just another record to stamp your weightless opinion onto and that is fairly shallow on yer end of the pool...like i said...maybe you need a little more backstock in your life before you can call the shot correctly...cause see my true point is that when  i listened to Specter at the Feast for my first time and then later read your critique...i really didn't know what the fuck you were talking about whatsoever...your review sounded nothing like the songs on that album that from first listen clogged my throat, made me lean into the speaker and hold my breath so i could hear every vocal chord rattle at the end of Teenage Disease...or make me listen to the end of Lose Yourself in astonished wonder at the melody...was it a voice or a guitar?  It mentioned nothing how Rival would drop my heart into gear like a massive burning ball mowing over fools...it mentioned nothing about how spectral and swamp haunting Some kind of Ghost is...and how it's like HOWL wrapped up into one scary gasoline soaked towel dripping over my tied down face...and i could go on, you mention nothing about the production, mixing, effects...that are nearly groundbreaking...heavens have a plum!...but i am not a critic...and i could say nor are you...but i like that You are free to have your opinion and i like that you give it and i like that you take the time to do it...i just think You can do it Better...if you would only dig a little deeper and take a little more time with your craft...and yes...that is just my humble sweet fuck all opinion...and it doesnae matter...cause we all have different taste...that is why a good critic aims from a place not of their tastebuds...but from a place as a ghost listener...constructive criticism...so to speak...to say what the album or film offers...not how it gave You an orgasm or didn't...great critiques give a description...a depiction if you will...not just an easy this or that...and if this album sucked, Yes i would say it sucked, straight to everybody in the band.  Why fuck around the bush? No, it's NOT an album for Everybody...that's why God made the Lumineers... Good Luck with everything You do Emma...Keep On Keeping On...don't mind my lil' ol' critique of yer werks...let freedom fucking sting* snort* iAN P.S. THIS OPINION DOES NOT REFLECT THE OPINIONS OF ANYONE AT BRMC OTHER THAN MYSELF... and FYI...THIS IS LEAH SHAPIRO...THE DRUMMER...IT'S A MODERN SHOT OF THE BAND...FEEL FREE TO CHECK IT OUT. p.s.s                        You also failed to mention how Hate the Taste sounds so bad ass that it's like ZZ Top butt fucking franz ferdinand in the ass somewhere deep in the Mojave Desert with a big Ol' Dark Heart On* 6a4ccfbc7ad611e299e022000a1fb043_7

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LNjTPZW7GCU     MOBY DICK...IT'S A GOOD LONG READ, BUT WHALES ARE BORING AND YUCKY...AND YOU CAN'T GET A CELL PHONE SIGNAL FROM THE SEA... NICK DRAKE - PINK MOON...I'VE NEVER SEEN A PINK MOON AND WHY IS HE ALWAYS SO DEPRESSING?  SUICIDE.  REALLY?  HOW DEPRESSING... CITIZEN KANE...WHAT THE FUCK IS A NEWSPAPER AND WHY WOULD ANYBODY CARE ABOUT THEM...OR A SILLY SLED?  TWO THUMBS DOWN! LACKLUSTER OPINIONS...TAKE ME OUT COACH! 27188_113933498631206_100000436680882_176537_411764_n Photo - Nina Theda Black /S.F./ Borracho*iAN