Monday, April 30, 2018

Your Monday Moment of Hell Has Frozen Over

So thanks to a longtime reader who has far too kind a heart, I have just discovered an online archive of years and years worth of scanned issues of The Magazine Formerly Known as Stereo Review.

I am not gonna post the link, lest you access all sorts of my poor scribblings that now kind of make me a little queasy.

But starting today, I will, from time to time, be posting some pieces that I think hold up.

Exhibit A in that regard: From the January 1981 issue, please enjoy my thoughts on Bruce Springsteen's The River. I worked pretty hard on this one at the time, and I think it's both perceptive and fair.

Double click on the image and you'll be able to see it and read it in the same size as it appeared in the mag originally.

Damn, I'm guess gonna have to start thinking about doing that threatened book version of my greatest hits.

[h/t M. Hardy]


Blue Ash Fan said...

Interesting that you chose September 1982 as the deadline for his "degenerating into...self-parody." That very month he released "Nebraska." Self-parody avoided, if you ask me.

An excellent review, even if I disagreed mightily with parts of it.

Also, given this treasure trove now at your fingertips, if you don't post your Tonio K. reviews here, you're really selling yourself short.

steve simels said...

I was kinda amazed at my prescience about Nebraska's release date, actually.

Mark said...

If "perceptive and fair" means giving Springsteen fans and those unfamiliar with Springsteen - and even those who didn't care for Springsteen prior to THE RIVER - a way to look at this album, and many things to consider about the album (and Springsteen himself), and the difference between production and music, and expectations of musician-artists in the short run as well as the long run, and so much more in such a small space, then yes. This review is perceptive and fair. And it's still a sweet read.

If Zappa did say that the definition of rock journalism is, "People who can't write, doing interviews with people who can't think, in order to prepare articles for people who can't read," then you, Steve, are the exception that proves the rule, even if Zappa's remark was just a Whole Lotta Snark.

Ken J Xenozar said...

My only comment. The paragraph with "What made Springsteen's earlier songs hit so hard..." is one of the finest summaries of his work I have ever read.