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i feared the worst but this is actually a pretty good article.
this is decent. I think I like Morley. He can sound like an arse at times but at least he sounds like he's driven by a sincere love of music.
It's interesting, he knows what he's on about for sure and he obviously loves the subject matter but I find his writing style incredibly prohibitive - having paragraph long sentences doesn't illustrate your point better, it just muddies the water and means you end up having to read the damn thing two or three times, which is a chore. That's my typical complaint with him really, I don't have any particular beef with him except that I find him very difficult to read. Not even Wire ends up at that level generally, so it's always odd to read that in a national newspaper!
And his Darkstar interview piece I find frustrating, it feels as though he's using an awful lot of column inches to not say that much at all.
"North – which is set in a wild, uncanny and unsentimental north, where times goes on, as imagined over the years by those such as Joy Division, early Human League, that part of the Beatles that used the studio to fall off the edge of themselves and Jeff Noon, and it is also set in another opened up world that runs parallel with this north as imagined by the likes of Cluster, Robert Wyatt, Klaus Schulze, Dennis Bovell, Brian Eno, David Sylvian and Tortoise – is dubstep only if dubstep is actually at the very centre a matter of disturbance, and a form of avoidance. It's dubstep if dubstep is a continuing form of research into not just where dubstep goes next but where electronic pop itself goes, and what difference does it make. It might be better to label it gauze, or fallen, or displaced, or post-present, or post-absent, or a force moving in one direction and a force resisting that movement."
Yeah, his sentence structure can get pretty fried but I don't think he's being oblique for the hell of it; more just trying to find new angles to approach these ideas from.
Also these tangles of words do make you try to consider what he's driving at and probably end up making you think about the subject more deeply than you otherwise would.
Maybe I'm being too generous but I'm still always interested in what he has to say.
he just gets lucky with the odd phrase, he knows what he's on about half the time but usualy ends up talking shite until he stumbles upon a phrase that works. Its a strange splater gun aproach thats really annoying to read and one that could be edited down to like four soundbites without loosing much content, you can cut out half of every article right away cos its usualy just him talking about himself without any relation to the music.
I liked this bit, 'produce sour, shredded, shelled music that appears to be some sort of x-ray of pop' and the videos.
try reading Words and Music. sentences last for pages. pages.
It's about Paul Morley. If I want an opinion on dubstep, I'd read someone who knew about and understood dubstep. HE talks a load of incoherant, self absorbed, pretentious, 'if you think long and hard enough about it you can make of it whatever you like' kinda shit.
Or I could just say that I'm not a fan.
you can make a good argument that he's a dilettante (or "overreacher-for-hire" as FACT called him) but what he's saying here isn't incoherant. His points about the disintegration of genre and having to "join in to really understand are" are well made. I think he probably knows more about the scene than you give him credit for. I think the article is pitched just about right given its intended readership (demographic generalisations notwithstanding).
I can see why he gets under people's skin though :-)
... the best advert for Paul Morley ever - it should be his epitaph.
It just seems that we aren't discussing his opinions particularly here, we're discussing his basic written communication skills more than anything - which for such a well known and successful writer and critic is pretty damn worrying.
To be fair you're right about the intended readership - he suited Observer Music Monthly down to the ground I guess aswell (although I thought that was shit too)
what an amazing image.
I always see that fucking Simon price(?) guy from the Independent around Brighton with that twatty punk mohawk thing sticking out of his head. It always worries me that I see him at some of the same gigs as me.
'She uses the name Ikonika. This makes her seem like something other, something from somewhere else, somewhere only a few know about, somewhere between the unknown and the unknowable, closer to the dislocated, unattached sound of her music, which is made up of interlinked bits of sound and noise, an impression of music, mating noises, knots and fractures, saliva and layers of skin, a film of lace netting, a crying in public, that seem always on the move, on the go, on the up, floating across a pre-planned pulse, a weird cool emptiness that sounds paranoid and penetrating, a disorientated series of sucks, shivers and cracks, of pressure points and ringing unrest, and she moves from place to place, country to country, from interworld to interworld, avoiding the sun, always on the way to somewhere else, and takes her music with her, a step apart from words, in the midst of a game, a fabricating that involves a sense of trespass and transgressing, fading in and out of a sinister evening, aiming for a sort of balance, and a way of sorting out what happens in her music before and after one moment and another.'
As funny as that is, he does it so often it's just so exhausting. It's like he's trolling you.
*reads some more*
Christ it gets worse! I'm not bothering, it's not worth the effort. That BBC program about why did England do so poorly at the world cup is on.
'You're talking a lot, but you're not saying anything'
I find the entire thing frustrating as I'm sure he has some good points buried in there somewhere. The Ikonika and Darkstar articles are nigh on unreadable, and it's hard not to feel that the whole thing smacks of pseudointellectualism.
The best article's the one on Jah Wobble, perhaps because he's got quite a direct connection to PiL and Wobble's music from when he was first writing. His assertion that the closest equivalent to PiL today is music from labels like Hyperdub, Planet Mu etc is pretty much true - and very true if you look at the earliest output from Hyperdub (Kode9 & Spaceape's hollowed out bass spaces) and Skull Disco (Shackleton is a self-professed PiL maniac, and always claimed that was more the sound he was aiming for than dubstep).