This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

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Larry Mal
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This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by Larry Mal » Fri Jan 01, 2021 9:13 pm

Now, I do like the Dead, or I used to or something. I don't listen to them but I suppose I might again some day.

But this is a funny article.

By the time they reach Shakedown Street, their playing has devolved into inept yacht rock. They’re too meek of a sound to be anything but easy listening but too loosely constructed to actually achieve easy listening.

Overall, the vocals are the best thing about The Dead, particularly Jerry Garcia’s shaky Neil Young-ish welp. When he’s on solo lead vocals, Bob Weir sounds like a Northern California douchebag who manages a granola co-op and side hustles a fast-pitch softball league, but he harmonizes well.

Even in their finest hour, the band falters more than they stand tall. They can’t perform the most basic job of a pop music band: holding down a groove. They have the worst rhythm section in rock. Their meandering shithead bass player has awful instincts and no help from the band’s two off-time drummers. Neither drummer provides a steady pulse. They take turns falling off the beat and hitting sloppy drum rolls to catch up.

The critical consensus is that The Dead floundered until embracing Americana on Workingman’s Dead and American Beauty, so it’s surprising how terrible both of those albums are. Workingman’s Dead is a thought experiment asking “what if the Eagles were somehow even more terrible”?


I mean it's a fun article.
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Re: This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by soggy mittens » Sat Jan 02, 2021 3:26 am

A lot of reviews I read these days I'm instantly reminded that it's just subjective opinion, which makes for really boring reading. Reviews at best are objective and best written in a way that draws attention to the strengths for those that are interested in those qualities to catch and run with. I'm not going to say that was the worst review I've ever read but at least the worst I've read this year so far.
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Re: This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by dinosaurkale-> » Sat Jan 02, 2021 5:57 am

they are DA WOYST

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Re: This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by Gavanti » Sat Jan 02, 2021 6:41 am

:D Thanks for this. We should have a thread for well-written takedowns. The theory of pop music’s structural value toward the end would exclude a lot of really good work, unfortunately, but I suspect it was contrived to justify the hit.

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Re: This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by marqueemoon » Sat Jan 02, 2021 8:27 am

I laughed out loud a few times.

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Re: This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by Larry Mal » Sat Jan 02, 2021 9:20 am

soggy mittens wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 3:26 am
A lot of reviews I read these days I'm instantly reminded that it's just subjective opinion, which makes for really boring reading. Reviews at best are objective and best written in a way that draws attention to the strengths for those that are interested in those qualities to catch and run with. I'm not going to say that was the worst review I've ever read but at least the worst I've read this year so far.
That was a harsh review of the article.
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Re: This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by Dok » Sat Jan 02, 2021 9:21 am

I'm not a HUGE fan of the Dead or anything, but I like a couple of their records (hello, Terrapin Station!), but this article is nuts. I might understand if all these sentiments were written about Phish, on the other hand...
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Re: This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by Larry Mal » Sat Jan 02, 2021 9:27 am

Dok wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 9:21 am
I'm not a HUGE fan of the Dead or anything, but I like a couple of their records (hello, Terrapin Station!), but this article is nuts. I might understand if all these sentiments were written about Phish, on the other hand...
Yeah, I like how the article ends with saying that after paragraph and paragraph of pure screed, the Dead are still better than Phish.

I can't say much about Phish, I saw them play once, hated it, people used to play that Billy Breathes album around me a lot and it left no impression.

However, I later heard this song which is not just an awful song, not just one of the worst songs ever, but something that seems like a calculated insult in some way.

But like I say, I like the Grateful Dead. I just thought it was a funny article with a lot of accurate negative commentary. Nothing I haven't heard before, I guess.
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Re: This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by countertext » Sat Jan 02, 2021 10:08 am

Larry Mal wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 9:27 am
However, I later heard this song which is not just an awful song, not just one of the worst songs ever, but something that seems like a calculated insult in some way.
They actively seek out the worst ideas in pop and rock from the last 60 years and combine them. Maybe they think they can push it all the way around a circle and hit good music from the other side. And the worked hard on it. You know Trey Anastasio was sitting at a mixer at some point after a long night and looked over at the engineer and said, “Yep, that’s perfect.”

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Re: This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by Dok » Sat Jan 02, 2021 10:14 am

Larry Mal wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 9:27 am
Dok wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 9:21 am
I'm not a HUGE fan of the Dead or anything, but I like a couple of their records (hello, Terrapin Station!), but this article is nuts. I might understand if all these sentiments were written about Phish, on the other hand...
Yeah, I like how the article ends with saying that after paragraph and paragraph of pure screed, the Dead are still better than Phish.
Hah! Admittedly I didn't even make it to the end because it was too mean-spirited. But as far as the song you linked, if you've never had to Jibboo I can understand why you might not "get" it.
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Re: This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by Larry Mal » Sat Jan 02, 2021 10:20 am

Dok wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 10:14 am


Hah! Admittedly I didn't even make it to the end because it was too mean-spirited. But as far as the song you linked, if you've never had to Jibboo I can understand why you might not "get" it.
Wait, no, I don't get it! I just thought it was some kind of gibberish or something about dope or whatever. Can you explain more?
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Re: This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by blacktiger » Sat Jan 02, 2021 1:36 pm

countertext wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 10:08 am
They actively seek out the worst ideas in pop and rock from the last 60 years and combine them. Maybe they think they can push it all the way around a circle and hit good music from the other side. And the worked hard on it. You know Trey Anastasio was sitting at a mixer at some point after a long night and looked over at the engineer and said, “Yep, that’s perfect.”
Spot on. Anyone who enjoys music, comedy, and podcasts should seek out Analyze Phish, featuring the late, great Harris Wittles, who was a huge Phish fan (and also, unsurprisingly, took lots of drugs), and Scott Aukerman, who most definitely is not. It’s amazing and hilarious.
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Re: This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by blacktiger » Sat Jan 02, 2021 1:43 pm

soggy mittens wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 3:26 am
I'm not going to say that was the worst review I've ever read but at least the worst I've read this year so far.
At least it’s (somewhat) funny - and I say that as a fan of some GD. The worst review I’ve read in recent history was of the Feral Ohms LP. It was 100% engineered to eviscerate them while showing just how clever and hip the author was. It was smarmy, pretentious horseshit, and I’m pretty sure my main takeaway would have been “fuck that guy,” even if I didn’t like the record.
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Re: This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by Dok » Sat Jan 02, 2021 7:43 pm

Larry Mal wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 10:20 am
I just thought it was some kind of gibberish or something about dope or whatever. Can you explain more?
Sorry, man. Either you gotta or you don't gotta Jibboo. But you'll definitely know when the time comes.
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Re: This guy does not like the Grateful Dead.

Post by Larry Mal » Sat Jan 02, 2021 8:24 pm

Dok wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 7:43 pm
Larry Mal wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 10:20 am
I just thought it was some kind of gibberish or something about dope or whatever. Can you explain more?
Sorry, man. Either you gotta or you don't gotta Jibboo. But you'll definitely know when the time comes.
Shit, I never know what's going on. I'd ordinarily take the only sentiment in that song I can understand and keep drinking, but it's no alcohol January!
Back in those days, everyone knew that if you were talking about Destiny's Child, you were talking about Beyonce, LaTavia, LeToya, and Larry.

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