the critic

I got  review of a CD one of the bands I’m in put out recently, readable here, and what struck me most was the somewhat confused attitude our music provoked in the reviewer. Victory! This quote stuck out: “if I knew what the band wanted me to take serious and what to laugh at, the recording would be a greater success.” I realized that most of the reviews of any artistic endeavor I’ve had subject to critique evoke the same confusion, the “what do I do with this” reaction that validates why I make art in the first place. It’s what I cherish in other artist’s work, and what I tend to critique first in art I find wanting. I don’t mean that I prefer art that is difficult or that one must struggle to understand. That approach is usually as predictable as the most mainstream art (witness: just started reading the Flounder, Gunter Grass, how drab experimentalism for its own sake seems, detached from the historical moment). To make art that eludes easy categorization and produces confused emotional states, yeah, that’s what I like.