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Værker af Martin Aston

Bjork: Bjorkgraphy (1996) 16 eksemplarer
"Pulp" (1996) 10 eksemplarer

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Max Richter : Ambient Orchestra [programme] — Interviewer — 1 eksemplar

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A history of LGBT people in the music industry (singers,musicians, producers, songwriters) over the last 100 years. It is mainly focussed on the US and the UK, with occasional nods to the rest of the English-speaking world, Western Europe and South America, and a world tour in the last chapter.

I frequently got distracted while reading this, looking up the songs mentioned on YouTube, where they exist. The author's attempt to be comprehensive meant at times the text basically felt like a list of names many of which I'd forgotten again ten minutes later. A worthy effort but for me at its best where it served as a trip down memory lane.… (mere)
Robertgreaves | 1 anden anmeldelse | Jul 12, 2022 |
An inexact history of one of the more influential record labels of the eighties/early '90s, Facing The Other Way traces the roots of Ivo Watts-Russell obsession with music and follows his highs and lows at the helm of 4AD. Aston's love of the label and it's music is clear from the outset; you can visualize him wearing a worn Cocteau Twins shirt from '83 while whittling away on his laptop. However his devotion leads him down some paths that just don't seem necessary to moving the story along, and at times Aston gets stuck on some bit of inertia (particularly This Mortal Coil recordings) that just makes for outright tedium. Another problem is that the book is poorly edited. I got my version on Kindle, and maybe the printed one was different, but whole chapters have atrocious spelling and grammatical errors that even the lowliest editor would catch. This leads to another basic problem of fact checking, there were many parts where pretty obvious mistakes were made. Off the top of my head: crediting Steve Albini as the bass player in Big Black, saying Guided By Voices formed in 1996, etc. The book could have used one or two more times through the editing machine before it hit the shelf.

Overall, though you can't fault the source material, and there are some great stories and anecdotes, particularly about snowy wild-man, Robin Guthrie, that fill the pages of Facing The Other Way. I can't imagine a world without 4AD, and I am glad that there is a book that recognizes it's impact on the world of both art and music.
… (mere)
JeremyBrashaw | 2 andre anmeldelser | May 30, 2021 |
This has to be one of my more disappointing reading experiences I've ever had. I've been a major fan of 4AD since the very beginning. I bought the first thing they produced and basically anything after that for years. If "4AD" was on the label, I could trust it to be good enough for me, and I can't even figure out how many 4AD albums have been crucial, influential, genre-creating, amazing, etc.

So I've always been looking for some 4AD history but have never run across one until recently -- this one. So after getting it, I "opened" it excitedly and started reading. And then wondering WTH. Some old dude in New Mexico??? I'll forever associate 4AD with the country in which it produced amazing albums from. If former owners of the country are old, screwed up, bitter, depressed, etc., and decided to move to another continent to live in another climate and they don't have much of anything to say at all, well, I really can't think of much more boring as hell than that, as well as just plain disappointing. I read on, hoping upon hope that SOMETHING would fucking happen (!!!) [and I've read 800 pages into a book before giving up before, so I'm willing to go a long ways before giving in and up...] but NOTHING ever happened and nothing interesting was ever described or written and eventually I was so bored, I was almost sad I had ever heard of 4AD, let alone bought hundreds of their albums, and I was most certainly sad I ever came across this book or author, because while the subject may be boring pap, depressed and depressing, how can one know the author is even remotely competent? The author chose to take a different tack in formating this book than I and many others would. In some cases, that might work out. In this case, it was a massive FAIL. Lose the reader's interest, lose the reader. Lose the reader, they tell 10 of their friends to avoid the book. And so on. Crap, millions of people -- many of them talentless hacks -- are publishing books these days due to digital self publishing, and while many to most are total shit, many are extremely good despite the total lack of proofing and editing, and these I would read, all, in their entirety before attempting this one again. So very not recommended and I'll keep looking for another book on the topic.… (mere)
scottcholstad | 2 andre anmeldelser | Feb 23, 2020 |
I tried to get through this book and did enjoy being introduced to new artists. However Aston is utterly tone deaf to biphobia and throughout uses quotes that downplay, diminish and constantly call into question well known bisexual artists sexuality. He clearly believes bisexuality is merely some sort of “cover” for people who are either “really straight” and just using gayness for publicity or “really gay” and “colluding with the closet” in the words of Marc Almond who he quotes without further comment. The book is filled with quotes like these.

He continually spells out how many relationships bisexual artists had with each sex and then implies they are either gay or straight based on that (including Dusty Springfield!) He doesn’t do this with artists who he believes are strictly gay.

I got to the chapter on the 80s before calling it quits. I just can’t keep reading a book that’s meant to be a history of LGBT music but is so out of touch with bi people. It’s a shame because the material was interesting - but I’m not going to keep reading a book that questions bi people’s existence on every other page.

Martin, if you’re reading this, find some bi folks and have a chat to try and understand what bisexuality actually is - then maybe do a rewrite of this book leaving the biphobic crap out and I’ll give it another read.
… (mere)
twp77 | 1 anden anmeldelse | Aug 4, 2018 |

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