04/07/2010

Hat Unexamined


Properly couldn't believe how shit this review in the Observer was. Apparently the full text:


Davy Graham, who died two years ago, aged 68, was revered among guitarists of every style. He never achieved the success he deserved, mainly because the media didn't know what label to stick on him. This collection of rare tracks includes some of his most jazz-inspired playing. There are five numbers, privately recorded in 1963 and paid for by Bob Monkhouse, who was a huge fan. There is also a whole live set, recorded 10 years later at the Medway folk centre, containing everything from Irish pipe tunes to a piece by Horace Silver and even a Cole Porter song.



Which is the worst kind of hollow, unaesthetic crap. I understand that 1) if some copy-ed idiot does ask you for a 100 word review, then you're doomed from the start unless you can write a sonnet for it and that 2) shading-in detail is vital if you're not to alienate the vast majority of your readership (the ones who don't feel compelled to google names they don't know about) and even that 3) the above is entirely objective, which I imagine some of you think is a good thing.

But this is just nothing, isn't it? I couldn't describe Davy Graham in 1000 words, though, so I suppose, again, it's the ridiculous format to blame rather than the reviewer, who has created an interesting encyclopaedia piece on this album. Just nothing like the actual critical attention which "review" is supposed to imply.


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