seven | article | editorial | .

irregular and random music-related thoughts and rants
posted on 20-Oct-2000 by anton
i am not sure what's the purpose of this editorial, let it be the snapshot of what I currently think about some of the interesting music-related topics, including "seven" in general, as well as some other rants.

i guess some of this is an attempt to look back after a year and few months of involvement with "seven." it has been an interesting experience, getting immersed into the music that much, attempting to analyze and put music in contexts and approach it from different sides. at times it has become a nice playground for almost unrelated theories; a mind gymnastics of some sort. at the same time I am trying to maintain the balance between the critic and the aficionado that is enjoying the music. I think so far I have been able to do that, although it has been tough at times, almost becoming a chore - something that I have always dreaded; after all I didn't not want the reviews to become my sole reason of listening to the music, and the amount of crap I listened to certainly did not make it easier.

it is strange to see that all of a sudden there are people out there (granted, quite a few) that do read my reviews and moreover, happen to think about them. I hope that my little articles do provoke some kind of debate and thought, even if they are sometimes intentionally provocative, somewhat rushed or completely subjective. I do appreciate the attention and trust of my readers, but at the same time I would not like to carry the burden of journalistic timeliness and exhaustive (and dry) factual completeness, I will do my best to pursue them, but I would focus on keeping personal, highly subjective approach.

I feel that this attitude would reflect my personal music tastes, attitude towards music more fully and would be of more value to anyone that cares to read it, knowing my background and tastes.

I find myself more and more willing to write about feelings and emotions provoked by music, play around with comparisons and find different contexts and view points, rather than plainly describe the release. this somewhat diminishes my value as an informative source. I do my best to manage both of those directions in my reviews, and alan's contribution and detailed approach certainly helps.

yet another issue I wanted to address arose from a constant debates about music carried on by musicians with musicians. I tried not to get involved too much, feeling somewhat incompetent to argue about technical details, but at the same time compelled to point out certain shortcomings and limitations of purely technical approach to music.

discussions like that are certainly valid, but they cannot alone define how good or bad the music piece is. after all it is the mood, the emotions and feelings created that are appreciated the most by the audience (emotions caused by realization of artistic concept, unexpected perspective, "coolness" factor, etc fall in here as well).

for me there is little use in arguing of what and how has been used in the making of particular album (unless it has been made a purpose and a goal, like in case of musique concrete).

most often I prefer to leave it for the "insiders" that are bound (cursed?) to listen to the music crippled by the technical knowledge, bringing them too close to the technical side of the process, making it purely a craft before anything else. I witness the musicians stopping listening to music because instead of enjoying it, the music makes them feel competitive, or superior. they cannot enjoy it fully anymore, instead thinking of how they could have done the same thing, or how it was done and what equipment was used. this is what I am constantly afraid of - this fine line between a craft and art, and once you have crossed it, there is a little hope of getting back. the distance, the separation has to exist in order to appreciate the music more fully, and I believe that while other perspectives are valid, this is the most non-restricting of all, opening up the ways to interpretations and meanings unrestricted by the boundaries of technicalities or musician's personalities.

of course, at the same time, the technique, the innovation and the originality should always be appreciated and only enhance the music. knowing the way ultra milkmaids made their material, or techniques cazzodio used in his work, or conceptualism of some noise artists is definitely contributing to the music. at the same time knowing that this or that musician used presets on their songs, or recognizing certain samples is definitely hurting the music, leaving bad aftertaste, but should never lead to a complete dismissal of the work based on those reasons.

on somewhat similar note, I could never accept the fact that people reject someone's music simply because of the personality of the musician, thus binding the music to the character and restricting it and essentially limiting it to the dimensions where it never meant to be. those little petty arguments seem to mostly flourish between the "insiders"; while part of it certainly is vain name-dropping, there are personal reasons involved - yet another argument for keeping away from the music-making industry. it took me a while to separate the music and its creators; so often a shallow personality of a musician revealed through the interview ruins the atmosphere so elaborately built by me. while I still curious about the personalities behind the music, I am often afraid that the impression they leave might be lethal for the music they create.

ideally, I would love to maintain a certain balance between involvement in music making process and objectiveness. this is a balance that is incredibly hard (or impossible) to keep. there are so many factors that affect this balance in both positive and negative ways thus making it altogether an exciting and challenging experience.

I hope that I would stick with those principles mentioned above. no matter how na´ve and idealistic they are, my personal experience slowly confirms some of them, while the rest will slowly evolve and improve. "seven" will still be a reflection of my subjective opinions and feelings, at the same time serving somewhat altruistic goal of informing, provoking interest, and stirring up those that are interested in music.

seven | article | editorial | .