Guest Star: "If An Album Is Trash, Give It A Zero"
Tuesday, Dec 14, 2010 12:55PM
[After recently reviewing Kanye West's My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy for The Source, contributor Andreas Hale weighs in on what it takes to place personal preferences aside and give an unbiased analysis of artists' music.]
I came from HipHopSite.com and then I was Editor-In-Chief at HipHopDX. And I have always believed that as an editor, if the rating is from zero to five, use it all. And if an album is trash, in my opinion, give it zero. That's my opinion.
At HipHopDX, that's what we did. If the album was bad, we would give it a half or a zero. I've never been into the mindset of trying to please anybody. And I definitely don't care about pissing anybody off. If your music is bad, that's our job to say and actually give an educated opinion on why it is bad.
It's one thing for you to just go out there and say your music is trash. But it's another thing to say and explain why the music does not make a good album. And I think that's the thing a lot of people don't do these days. They just come out and say something without putting a lot of thought behind it or give a great review without even considering [the factors]. Is this really good music? Is it timeless? Will you be listening to this album three or four years from now?
And in that case, that's when you look at an artist like Kanye West. I've listened to Kanye West's albums years after they have all came out, with the exception of 808's & Heartbreak; it had its little moments here and there, but everything [else] that he's done has been pretty timeless.
Reviewing albums is not about appeasing anybody. It's not about saying, "Here Kanye, I don't want to piss you off, so here you go." It's more so about commending this man for what he's done and the truth of the matter is the guy has always been long overdue for getting a perfect rating in any sense, because he's been doing really good music for a long time.
Andreas Hale is a veteran hip-hop journalist and founder of The Well Versed. In addition to being a contributor to The Source, Hale is a former editor to HipHopDX, BET.com and HipHopSite.