By way of Daniel from The Field Recordings:
(This reply will certainly be a mess because most of it is aimed for the Author of the article and some is aimed at the Figureheads at the blog)
I suppose this will have to be short as I haven't heard Sub Verso's record, nor has my band ever played with their band, ETC. But here are a couple things that struck me about the write-up: No one does this anymore. Interviews are meant as fluff & to push records, record reviews don't even bother describing what a record really sounds like, nor do reviewers ever come right out and say which songs they LOVE, ETC. And--here's my point, I think--the time of Grand Artistic Statements (or, The Time When Grand Artistic Statements Could Be Taken Seriously & Dangerously) in Rock'N'Roll (or anywhere else, for that matter) has been over for 30 years.
But the "Open Letter" is precisely that: a grand artistic statement. (I can only imagine how it's sitting with the guys in SV--I can only imagine how I'd feel if one of our albums was ever the Genesis for something like that) But nevertheless, THAT'S what's missing from post-Rolling Stone music journalism: Disappointment! Dejection! The Fan's pain at someone else's failure! That's what was all over Lester Bangs' writing--the Morals Game--and not in any healthy or holy sense, but in the way that every choice for a band, for an album, for a song was a choice between Truth & Lies, ETC. and the people who made the wrong choices & let him down seemed to injure him, and the resulting pieces weren't so much about the records he heard,but the records he COULD have heard.
So I think I've finally reached my point: What struck me about your article (and the blog publishing it) is how INJURED, how HONEST, & how UNFLINCHING it is. In this era of EVERYTHING IS MEANINGFUL (even Meaninglessness), it's becoming more & more rare for anyone to actually try and rally a group to some kind of Purpose--because to do that would be to reject SOMETHING, or ANYTHING. Unfortunately, no one has left a Comment on the post, so I have no idea how anyone is taking it. I don't know--the sheer Politics of printing something like this are staggering--and it brought to mind the negative show review published about Slam Donahue only to then invite them to play the ChiliFest... Are you guys afraid you'll get shunned one of these days? Do you care? Have you heard any kind of reply from Sub Verso?
Ah, Bravery! In this state where all our talent goes to New York! Where most of the people left don't seem to care! Where all the clubs smell like Estate Sales! Where all the bands keep to themselves! We at least have a website that takes us as a SCENE, as a THREAT, as a REALITY, and holds us accountable when we betray their support! THANK YOU!
The saddest part is that all Bangs' honesty got him killed by cough syrup in a crappy Chinatown apartment,
PS--Sorry, this thing kind of got away from me. I hope my Mess hasn't offended either of you.
Running this site is kinda tricky considering that as much as I do my best to keep the peace, deep down I always want to go for the jugular. That Slam Donahue post was one of the best we've seen, and a huge thank you to both the "John" that posted the review (not John Hall, who runs CT Indie with me) and to Slam Donahue for being cool with it.
I'm not going to speak for Rich, but I can tell you he mulled over how to address that Sub Verso release quite a bit, and had plenty of
I can talk about this site, though. Trying to keep enthusiasm and motivation as high as possible has come at the cost of dancing around mediocre bands and releases. Most anyone that has written for this site has gotten an email from me about the fact that our goal is to support our local music scene, not shit all over it.
I'm usually the last person to review releases because of this. Unless I have something good to say, mum's the word. I don't really know how I feel about that anymore. I mean, obviously there are ways to be critical without being a blatant douche pickle, right?