The second compendium of extracts from Continuum's acclaimed and successful 33 1/3 series....
|Title||:||33 1/3 Greatest Hits, Volume Two|
|Number of Pages||:||169 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
33 1/3 Greatest Hits, Volume Two Reviews
I really like some of the 33 1/3 series books that I've read, and I saw that this was one of the few remaining in that series at my library, so I thought I could use it to at least give me a sense of which of the books covered in this run I'd like to hunt down. I tend to like the books that focus more on artist history and then a song-by-song critical reading like the Village Green Preservation Society or There's a Riot Going On books than the ones about the critic's subjective personal history with the music. I'm feeling kind of under the gun with the amount of to-read books I have stacked up, so I ended up skimming a lot of the sections if they weren't about albums or musicians that I was especially emotionally invested in.
I had read a few of the installments of the 33 1/3 series prior to picking up this anthology. The first one I read was about DJ Shadow's "Endtroducing..." and it was fascinating. A true slice of insight into the creation of one of the best, most influential albums of all time. So with that fresh on my mind I was excited to read this. I have to admit that while picking through the different chapters upon my initial reading I was stoked and satisfied. The piece on My Bloody Valentine's "Loveless" was insightful for sure. And it made me fall in love with that album again for the fortieth time. The piece on "Paul's Boutique" was equally insightful. But then there were so many pieces that were utter shit. I mean total garbage. So much so that it made Wm. Stephen Humphrey sound like Shakespeare.There were some pieces on albums/artists that I have previously had absolutely no interest in. One of these was Bruce Springsteen's "Born in the U.S.A.". I absolutely hate Springsteen. But this piece really made me think twice about the intent of the album. Something that I never really gave credence to because I just thought it was another top 40 hack job. But after reading it I was compelled by all of the mid-80's topical Vietnam Vet material. I guess I always thought it was some Jack and Diane schlock bullshit. So I actually learned something. But alas, I listened to that song again and can say with authority that I HATE THAT SONG. I am of the school that thinks there is no place in Rock n' Roll for horns. Period. You hear me Chan Marshall? I mean not even Eddie and the Cruisers could pull it off!Regardless, if you are a music geek this could provide some quick reading on the bus or the toilet. Or both!
This thing is wildly uneven, which is an obvious risk you run with a collection of essays, but seriously, this thing is all over the place in terms of quality. It's not easy to write descriptively about art. Some people can do it, some can't. The people who can are somehow able to generate descriptions that themselves could stand alone as aesthetic objects. And then there are people who use Daydream Nation as an excuse to unleash their own horrible attempts at literary stream of consciousness on the world. Some of these essays are written by seasoned music writers and curators. Some are written by contextually-challenged fanboys, which explains the odd moment I had when I realized that I enjoyed the essay on Born in the U.S.A. more than the one on The Stone Roses.The first half of the book is actually pretty good. It goes downhill at "Doolittle" - excepting the Polizzotti chapter; that's a keeper.
Geeking out on 'story behind the albums' of some cult favorites or various rock eras.