Classic ‘reviews’ from the US music press – 1: Kanye West
Who needs to reprint the review when you’ve got perfection in a numeral?
My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
[Def Jam / Roc-A-Fella; 2010]
Ryan Dombal, Pitchfork
MORAL: I do not doubt that the reviewer likes this album. But what is the tipping point wherein the Pitchfork reviewer says to HIMself, “Ah g’wan, this is worth far more than a tired old 9.9. 9.9’s are so 2009. 9.9’s just aren’t going to cut it here. C’mon Ryan, we need to prove to that doubting outside world that we’re not just Vampire Weekend-lovin’ indie nerds here at Pitchfork, we need to make a STATEMENT.” What is that extra-special something that allows Mr Dombal to give the album the extra 0.1 of a mark that will lift it out of the realm of the merely extraordinary to the spiritual plain of absolute perfection?
A particularly fine cup of coffee?
A gorgeous spring morning?
His kids allowing him to sleep in past 5.15 am?
The way the cellophane packaging came off the CD without needing scissors?
The production on the third beat, 15.03 minutes in?
…It couldn’t have been for that horrendous illustration on the ‘rejected’ cover, surely?
In the comic book world, and in the philatelists’ one, too, grades are given according to condition. When do you suppose the Pitchfork editors are finally going to bite the bullet and follow suit? It would do away with so much of the annoying arguing.
P.S. It’s a good job the album wasn’t given to someone who didn’t like Kanye West as much. Unless that 10.0 is supposed to apply to everyone?
P.P.S. Here, for example, is Blog On The Tracks’ take on the album.