I've seen the term "bigoted" getting thrown around here. If you seriously think this review is "bigoted" then you clearly have no clue what that word means.
This is honestly the most amazingly honest and cutting (not to mention risky) piece of music journalism I've seen in a very long time, and the issue itself it a genius bait-and-switch. It's not often you see a band on the cover of a magazine get absolutely torn to shreds inside with such little warning (I mean, who's going to read it if they know off the bat that they're favorite local band is getting trashed?). And, frankly, having seen and heard this band a number of times, they deserve it.
Basically, if you think this review is "bad," it's because you just got called out for listening to a soul-less, artless facsimile of music and you're bummed about it. That's all this boils down to. Grayson's job isn't to make you feel good about the music you listen to, nor is it to give a local band with virtually no artistic prowess a pat on the back just because they're a local band. His job is to write his highly informed opinions about albums and musicians. You don't have to agree with him, but you can't deny that Grayson knows what the hell he's talking about, nor can you argue that he isn't an excellent writer.
TL;DR: I'd bet a pretty good chunk of money on the fact that Grayson knows a Hell of a lot more about music in general, and has a far greater insight into what makes music worth merit, than any single person in this thread who is complaining about this review. And that's not a bet I make lightly, because I'm pretty broke and I need to pay off a speeding ticket.
The point of the comparison was: people can justifiably complain when someone gives a judgment that they think is partial, exaggerated or unfair. Saying if you like X, then you should just be oblivious to other people's judgments about X, just does not fly in many contexts. (Maybe it works for ice cream preferences). Not with judgments of music, and not with judgments of persons either. The alternative is to say musical judgments are purely subjective -- you like what you like, and i like what i like -- then why have music reviews or discuss them?
Deal with these questions, instead of evading them by insinuating I am equating the reviewer to a misogynist.
So you're comparing your hypothetical misogynistic insults to a music review? I believe you've added another data point to my thesis. Stay classy Delta Rae fan.
"There seems to be a correlation between how much a band sucks and how shrilly their fans will screech at any criticism."
Is there supporting data? Are there reliable ways to measure the relationship between 'band suckiness" and "shrill screeching fans"? I wouldn't know, I don't have a subscription to the Quantitative Journal of Sh*t Music.
"Really, if you like it what do you care if someone else doesn't?"
Compare: I tell you that your girlfriend is a whorish bitch, and list her alleged shortcomings in obscene detail. If you like her, what do you care if someone else doesn't? Answer: because the characterization may be partial, exaggerated or unfair.
There seems to be a correlation between how much a band sucks and how shrilly their fans will screech at any criticsm. Really, if you like it what do you care if someone else doesn't?
It's a dern good thing the notion of hipsters being "trendsetters" is only an illusion (purchased solely by other douchey hipsters)…else we'd all wind up enlightened and, why, hell, music just wouldn't sound like music anymore. Oh, and my favorite part of Grayson's review is the last line..."offering vacuous if vivid appropriations of languages that they've heard but have not mastered." Look in the mirror, homie! What do you know, sir, of the "language" of music? Can you play a lick? Or do you just vomit meaningless words. Your command of the English is good; unfortunately, you have nothing to say or create, and for that shortcoming you will be forever compensating.
While as a long-time fan and follower of Delta Rae - we drove up from the Outer Banks for the Cat's Cradle show - I agree that their album is a bit over produced, I have to say that the talent and energy this band brings to its live shows is amazing. I'm not unfamiliar with folk, Southern, or rock music - having seen live shows that ranged from Credence Clearwater Revival to Chicago to Led Zepplin to Leonard Skinnard to a year following the Grateful Dead. Yes, all of those were "popular" bands, but they were popular for a reason - people liked their music. We've seen Hendrix, and Paul Simon, and Joplin, and Arlo Guthrie, so we sort of know music. (Yeah, we're that old!) We also know what "bubble-gum" music sounds like, and Delta-Rae ain't it! While the reviewer has a right to his own opinion, he's so full of his own self-importance and prejudices against anyone who becomes "popular" that he cannot listen with clarity and fairness!
Even if the review made some good points -- especially if one is profoundly concerned about whether a band is authentically southern (whatever that means) -- the obvious relish (and name dropping) expressed in the finding-fault and over-the-top criticism does little to enhance the credibility of the reviewer. It is hard to see that Delta Rae's music is 'pornographic', but easy to see how this review could be considered masturbatory.
Mr. Currin, you are entitled to your opinion . . . no matter how wrong it is. I only hope that those with a heart and soul will disregard your misguided opinion. My guess is that in the next year or so, many, many more people will know and appreciate Delta Rae than Grayson Currin.
I don't understand why so many people believe music criticism should follow the rule "if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say it at all." The point of music criticism is to express an opinion or judgement about the music and the musicians who made it. Critics should review music they don't like, in addition to music they enjoy.
Its perfectly ok to disagree with a review of an album, but personally attacking the critic who wrote that review is idiotic and shows that your argument in support of the music is rather weak.
Everybody's entitled to his opinion, and it's not like every single review can or should be positive. But the Indy's been hostile toward Delta Rae ever since the band started playing shows. With each subsequent predictably negative write-up (even the cover story was dripping in thinly veiled condescension), it gets harder and harder to take any of this seriously as music journalism. We get it, guys. You're way too cool for them. Move on?
’Cause the devil’s in my hometown and I ain’t telling him no
’Cause it’s my family, it’s my love now, that I’m scared to let go
And I say oh, oh
Rain don’t change the sun
Jealous is the night when the morning comes
But it always comes
I really hope it's not a requirement to be a bigoted pretentious hipster to read this magazine. I find it very informative and interesting on multiple levels in numerous aspects of the culture of Raleigh and environs. But god, I hope you all never witness my band cause we actually suck and you would probably put a hit out on us.
Wait a sec, why is no one talking about the fact that Eric Holljes co-wrote "Cooler than me" with Mike Posner, which peaked at #6 on the Billboard Hot 100 and probably netted him quite a few thou ?!? None of us should be surprised that they're shooting for the top forty once again. In fact, that's probably as much of a reason for their record deal as anything else in this or the other story.
Mr. Currin, I learned a lot about Delta Rae from the Klein article. But the only thing I learned from your review was about you: 1.) You are familiar with the music of Robin Pecknold, Fleet Foxes, Shepard Fairey, and Dave Mathews. And 2.) you think anyone who enjoys support groups, Rascal Flatt, Lion King, Starbucks music, the FM dial, Terry Gross, NPR, religious rock, Carole King, Leslie Feist, chorus lines, Miranda Lambert, working class values, Iron & Wine or the Avett Brothers is due derision. Remind me of why this is useful information for your readers.
Ive never really heard of the band before, but after reading the review I thought there was no way a record could be this bad. I was wrong. Ater listening to clips of 4 songs i had to turn it off. Its so bland. So middle of the road. So uninspired. This is not southern music at all. This is a glitzed up interpretation of what upper class white america thinks southern music is. Mr. Currin was a little harsh in his delivery, but i couldnt agree with his message any more.
I've seen Delta Rae live. The first thing that came to mind was "Glee except not cover songs." This review did not seem particularly hateful it just seemed honest.
They are on the cover because they are from Durham and getting national attention. They got a bad review because the record is bad.
I was astonished at the intensity of vitriol from the reviewer. He HATES these guys. I think he must have been turned down by one of the girls or something and really took it badly. He is an idiot to put it bluntly. I have seen hundreds of bands, touring professional and local over a 20 year period in Raleigh and this is the most professional act I have ever seen from here. First time I saw them I could not believe that kids so young were that...here it comes....polished. I think the reviewer can only appreciate ragged music and professionalism is a sign of pandering to him. I love dirty filthy unvarnished music myself...revel in it actually, and Delta Rae is not in that category at all. There is more than one type of music and some people actually want to strive for perfection. Delta Rae gets as close as humanly possible. Live they are unmatched in the vocal prowess except for Jeanne Jolly, who is an unnaturally talented goddess.
To be honest though the album can't deliver the knock out punch of the live show they do. If you stand close enough to hear their voices through the air as opposed to the sound system you will know what I am talking about. It is so beautiful and powerful it makes your hair stand up on your arms and can actually make you cry. Go see them and be prepared for something special.
With some many amazing new independent/self-recorded acts coming out of the Triangle area, why is this paper giving any space to a band like Delta Rae? That mainstream music sounds like mainstream music isn't newsworthy. They'll get plenty of attention elsewhere; let's keep IW as a space to celebrate (and help others discover) all the awesomeness in our musical community.
Give us something fresh to listen to.
Indy Week • 201 W. Main St., Suite 101, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
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