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Old 06-15-2012, 09:09 AM   #1
Meat Popsicle
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Posts: 6,914
Applications for Contributor Positions

Originally Posted by Jom View Post
Hello, everybody.

To get geared up for the impending spring/summer release calendar, we will be adding more contributor writing positions here at the site...

...Do you feel that you are qualified? If so, please read on for our informal two-part application, which should look strangely familiar:

Part I

In a couple paragraphs (roughly 2-3... you can write more or less if you feel it's necessary), outline what position you're seeking and why you should be considered for the promotion.

Some questions you can consider to help flesh out your ideas more:

- What makes you stand out amongst other contributors?
- Do you cover new releases?
- Do you specialize in specific genre(s)?
- Do you plagiarize (if so, you will not be considered)?
- Do you consistently contribute to the site other than reviewing records (adding albums and bands to the database, commenting, providing constructive criticism and feedback to new and veteran writers)?
- Are you a pain in the ass and Dave and I have to ban you all the time, or are you a typically model citizen (a couple hiccups here-and-there is okay)?

Basically, you get to sell yourself to Dave, Trey and I and mx and the other staff writers. Might as well go for the cheese.

Part II

Submit 3-5 links to what you feel are your best reviews, and write a quick sentence or two explaining why you are adding it to your application (e.g. "I added this review because it was a new release and it has over 200 comments and 30,000 views").

Deadline: Sunday, July 08, 2012, at 23:59:59PM EST

Please informally submit your application in a post here.

Thanks for your attention,

*** This was originally written in 2009, but it still works today
These days many politicians are demanding change. Just like homeless people.
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Digging: Samael - Hegemony

Old 06-15-2012, 10:32 AM   #2
Michael Scarn, FBI
Ignimbrite's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 108
Hey, so I'm looking to apply to be a contributor on this fine site. As you may know, this isn't my first account, the old one being called wyankeif1337. Now, I often acted like an idiot on this account, and this in combination with the stupid name and some technical difficulties prompted me to switch to the account I'm on now, yet it was not a total loss. On the old account, I got a significant amount of experience writing reviews, with a final total of 56 reviews and a more-than-respectable approval rating of 95%. On this account, I learned how to write, so when I finally moved to the new account, I had gained significant knowledge of what worked and what didn't when reviewing music. It worked like a charm: now, with 14 reviews written on this account, I have a perfect 100% approval rating, and I receive positive feedback from other users on every review I write. My mom found my account and she also thinks I'm a hella good writer, so that should tell you something.

As for what I cover, it greatly varies. I review a relatively equal mix of new and old releases, basically throwing out a review for whatever album I feel really deserves one (although I arguably enjoy reviewing newer albums more). This often means that the majority of my time is spent covering lesser-known releases in an effort to point others to some great new music, and it also can mean that I write negative reviews less often than others, as I generally review only albums that I really like and want to introduce to others (although there are exceptions to this rule, and I could easily change this if needed). As far as genres, my specialties are those like sludge metal, black metal, post-rock, and hardcore, although, on the old account and on the current one, I have (usually successfully) taken shots at a massive variety of genres, and I am not afraid to cover something out of my comfort zone. And hell no, I don't plagiarize.

I also constantly contribute to the site in ways other than reviews, adding whatever news I can find, making intelligent comments on lists and reviews, pointing out peoples' misuse of "its" and "it's" in their reviews, and adding a serious number of albums and bands to the database. Finally, I have been banned only twice in my tenure on Sputnik, and both were weeklong bans for being an idiot on the old account. Since I have switched, I have gone from a model, if slightly immature, citizen to a fully mature and respectable member of the Sputnik community.
--Out of the reviews I've done on this account, this is probably my most well-known. It was featured on the front page for a few days, it has nearly 24K views and 250 comments, and it's for an album that's arguably more popular than much of the other stuff I review. If I may, I think it's also one of the most well-written things I've ever done.
--As well as being one of my best-written reviews, I think that this review also is a good manifestation of my desire to bring relatively unknown albums to the attention of the Sputnik masses. This album had been in the database for months, and it had had very few ratings, yet after I wrote this review for this stellar release, many were convinced to give it a shot and many loved it nearly as much as I did.
--This is one of my favorites. First, when writing this, everything came extremely naturally to me for some reason with none of the writers' block that I have experienced writing other reviews, and as such this is one of my best-flowing writeups. Also, it displays my prowess at writing reviews for splits (6 out of my 14 reviews on this account have been for splits or collaborations), and I think this is something important as very few of the current staff or contributors often write reviews for these types of releases, making me a potentially valuable addition to this community.
--This is one of the earlier reviews I did on my first account, and I only post it here to show you how far I've come from the TBT-in-disguise schtick that I used to go off of.

Thanks for your consideration!

If you're interested in the stats:
Reviews 14
Approval 100%
Site Rank 567

Soundoffs 56
News Articles 21
Band Edits 32
Album Edits 99

Album Ratings 1094
Objectivity 78%

Forum Posts 50
Review Comments 2,589

Last edited by Ignimbrite; 06-20-2012 at 01:01 PM.
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Old 06-15-2012, 10:35 AM   #3
Jeremy Bentham
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Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Florida
Posts: 8
Contributing Reviewer Application

I have decided to apply for the position of contributing reviewer for a number of reasons. First off, I love sputnikmusic and visit the site on a daily basis. I don't do anything to upset the mods and have always maintained a good attitude when posting on the site. Even though I don't post as much comments as a lot of the members (some of which have been here not even as long as me and have more comment posts) I am always looking through new reviews and looking ahead and writing reviews for new releases. I'm always looking for new albums that are coming out to write reviews for, and to review releases by artists that aren't well known in the sputnik community so that everyone knows what is going on.

I also keep up in the news section as well, and am consistently looking for new articles that may be of value to the news section on sputnik and posting them. I never plagiarize, and take time to make sure my reviews are edited before posting them. I specialize in metal, rock, and industrial however the spectrum of genres in which I review is growing and expanding as my time on sputnik gets longer. I am always open to the opinions of others to help improve my writing and generously listen to the feedback of other users here. For all of these and more, I would be honored to be a contributing reviewer here on sputnikmusic.

Reviews 54
Approval 96%
Site Rank 102

Soundoffs 35
News Articles 81
Band Edits 15
Album Edits 54

Album Ratings 502
Objectivity 77%

My review on the new Marilyn Manson album Born Villain is, in my opinion, my best work to date with reviewing here on sputnik. The review received 26 pos' and has massed over 22,000 views. I took time and careful thought into writing the review for this 2012 release and I received a lot of positive feedback from it.

My most recent review. I wrote a review up for Wish Upon A Blackstar for a number of reasons, one of them being that Celldweller is an artist on sputnik that isn't reviewed by many and being that this is a new release and an album almost a decade in the making, I wanted to get the word out about it on the site. It hasn't massed much feedback as of yet because it was posted just this past week, but I take it as an example of how I review new releases and am always trying to make artists aware to all of us here on sputnik.

My review on Korn's 2010 album Remember Who You Are was another one of my better reviews on sputnik. It was another one of my reviews that was featured on the main page, and has massed 17,000 views. In writing this review I also provided sputnik with the backstory of the recording of the album as well as giving my opinion of the music itself and listing the positive and negatives of the release. This is a review where I really encompass all of the aspects of the release and thoroughly cover it in my review.

Last edited by BassDemon333; 06-18-2012 at 12:10 PM.
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Old 06-15-2012, 10:52 AM   #4
Smells of Genff
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 32
Greetings. I'm Ryan J. Marks, serving under the moniker ThyCrossAwaits.

I've been a consistent member and user of Sputnik for 4 years, 6 months, 6 days as of today.


Reviews 40
Approval 85%
Site Rank 155

Soundoffs 83
News Articles 5
Band Edits 7
Album Edits 41

Album Ratings 355
Objectivity 64%

Last Active 06-15-12 12:01 pm
Joined 12-09-07

Review Comments 2,602"

Am I grandfathered into a position yet? I stopped counting my apps, but today is probably my fifth (hire me). Speaking of today, just hours ago I planted a smooch on the Blarney Stone, thus becoming eloquent. I'm an avid writer and lister, as well as an extremely cosmopolitan music appreciator, my library expanding exponentially in constant growth, from Tchaikovsky to Corrupted to Bob Dylan to Neurosis to "My Blue Heaven" by Harry Connick, Jr. to Stars of the Lid to whatever's new. I cover new releases like sweat under a fratboy's bust at the midnight release of Skyrim. I've got on ongoing search and checklist for upcoming cool shit. I fabricate horrendously complex metaphors for the most hideous cinderblock-on-fire-crushing-an-amp-someone-put-the-mic-too-close-to noisegrind doomsludge deathshoe as well as fluffy orgasming-clouds-over-puppy-sundaes viola-folk and I'm proud to call it my personal flavor (Baskin Robbins hasn't gotten back to me). I post sparsely, but I always look to do more honestly. There's nothing I love more than listening analytically and sensually to music (I turn off certain albums if the mood is wrong) and reviewing is just my niche. I do add albums to the database as frequently as I come across them, bands as well (I'm still the one that added "Axe To Fall"). I'm also a socializer and make friends easily through parallel music tastes, and conversations with me steer that direction often. Motivate me with a title and a fife of land and I'll surprise you with how much horsepower I'll kick into this site.

P.S. This is my first and only account, NEVER BEEN BANNED. Never been canned, panned, or scanned. Never been planned, manned, or fanned.

^ My best review in my opinion. Shows my flow and metaphor-slinging, as well as my background knowledge of the subject and introspection.

^ Most recent review, and my best attempt at a more negatively-critical angle. I also used several allusions to Old West-ery, and am proud how it didn't come off gimmicky.

^ Latest excursion from my metal preferences, instead going for cockney Brithop. I like the write-up both because it's a display of my flexibility but again for its critical viewpoint.

Last edited by ThyCrossAwaits; 07-09-2012 at 11:36 AM.
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Old 06-15-2012, 12:17 PM   #5
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Location: Somewhere in the Between
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Hey folks, Thompson D. Gerhart (AtomicWaste) here applying for contribooter again.

I generally specialize in prog, instrumental metal, metalcore, and the other 80 bazillion variations, combinations, and permutations thereof, including things that label themselves "djent." As weird a name for a subgenre as it is, I think it's here to stay and it's an easy umbrella for me to put many up and coming groups that I give a listen to under. Of course I also don't limit myself - I've still got Last Dinosaurs' In a Million Years bumping in my head and I'm on the lookout for new indie pop as much as I am new prog metal.

Over the past few years, I've been shifting my focus as a reviewer to newer releases and have tackled several that have been big in the metal community. At the same time, I look for a lot of new releases that people may never have heard of, mostly since reading reviews on Sputnik is often how I find some good new bands, and I'd like to return the favor to anyone willing to read my reviews.

Of a similar token, I will often add bands to the database that are not already there if I have given them a listen and will usually try to at least add a sound off to an album with no reviews. I've also compiled information and written several original band biographies based on that information (though the site likes to tear apart formatting, I think they still work out pretty well). I post commentary frequently on news articles alongside the judging face of Mr. Torbin Ulrich and I do my best to suggest any pertinent feedback on reviews whenever necessary.

As far as being a standout goes, I cover a lot of bands' first releases, which many veteran reviewers should know is a bit more daunting than reviewing a release late in an artist's discography. Rather than providing details about the band's formation and current events, I rely heavily on the album's content and being able to draw my own conclusions about the album's relevance in relation to its genre or the state of music in general. I also try to follow-up on artists who make promising EPs and later submit an LP (i.e. The Omega Experiment), which makes for a slightly different reviewing experience, but also gives me an opportunity to offer a progress report on a fledgling band from a consistent source.

All of my writing is 100% original, in nearly 4 years of activity I have never been banned, and I'm pretty easy to work with. At least that's what the people I've worked with in the past have said. So without further ado, here's a few of my highlight reviews:

This review was a feature in March of 2011 and was submitted the day of the album's release. It has nearly 43,000 views and has received generally positive feedback. For what it's worth, I was also under a tremendous load of pressure (student teaching 11th grade English) at the time I managed to get this done, and I think that says a bit about my ability to produce reviews even when otherwise extremely busy.

This review was written and submitted right around the time the album was released as well, and offers an in-depth artist-centered review that takes a lot of information from interviews and synthesizes it with the album content to present a full view of why Deconstruction was what it was. That, and it's fun to make summary statements like "Woah, good lord it's a Cheeseburger! A double! BEER! BEER! BEER!" which was actually fitting for this album.

Ghost, in many ways, is the companion review to Deconstruction, and I feel that it's hard to post one without the other, though both reviews present a similar insight into the artist as well as the music. Though I generally tout myself as writing reviews of new artists, these are a good sampling of my style in dealing with artists with an extensive back-catalog. That, and I intend to review Epicloud as soon as it drops.

I got some flak for this one, but I stand by my opinions. Weightless was Tosin Abasi slinking into the background and dulling up his sound at the direction of his cohorts. It was nothing special and, for one of the most highly anticipated albums of the year, it was extraordinarily boring.

Finally, here's a review of an emerging new artist that follows up on an EP review and manages to take a look at trends among both the music industry and listeners in relation to its reception (sort of validating what I was saying above... sort of, I hope).

Anyway, that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

As the fat kid in dodgeball once said: PICK ME!

[(Ir)relevant Stats]
Reviews 42
Approval 95%
Site Rank 134

Soundoffs 43
News Articles 2
Band Edits 10
Album Edits 56

Album Ratings 498
Objectivity 70%

Last Active 06-16-12 1:52 pm
Joined 12-15-08

Forum Posts 9
Review Comments 635

Last edited by AtomicWaste; 06-16-2012 at 11:55 AM. Reason: Added stats because everyone else was doing it and I'm a victim of peer pressure wahhhhhh
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Old 06-15-2012, 04:01 PM   #6
El Presidente
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Timisoara, Romania
Posts: 240
Hello, my name is Raul Stanciu (more known as insomniac15). I've been a member on Sputnikmusic for almost 5 years now, but in the past two years I started taking my reviewing seriously and I feel that I have improved a lot ever since. I constantly listen to any constructive criticism I am given to become a better reviewer and at the same time I try to give others advice as much as I can. Even though I've been a member for a long time now, I don't have that many comments because I usually post when I feel I've got something to say. However, I access the site on a daily basis and read most of the reviews submitted by everyone. I have never got into an argument with anyone here and don't have a bad attitude to be banned or have trouble with the staff members or moderators.

More than half of my earlier work here is for older records because I wanted to improve my writing skills before moving on to new albums. However, starting 2012, I concentrated mostly on current releases and I tend to continue so. I don't focus on only one genre, but my reviews are mainly included in the rock sphere (hard rock, stoner rock/metal, psychedelic, alternative, industrial rock/metal, blues-rock, etc.). Still, I have written reviews for electronic and pop records too. I never plagiarize and I usually look for different reviews on one album to see other thoughts so that I won't write the same thing again. At the same time, I document myself on artists and bands I want to review to better understand concepts behind their work and read or watch interviews to know more about the release. A big number of my reviews don't have so many views because they don't belong to so many high profile bands and I usually want to write where there aren't any and not add where isn't necessary. I know there is a lot of room for improvement and I try that with every new review I submit.

Beside my reviews, I very often submit news articles, edit or add albums and information for many artists and bands. I try to contribute as often as I can and know anywhere on this site. As a result, I believe I am suitable for being a contributor on this site.

Saint Vitus' latest record, Lillie: F-65, is important for me because is the first review for a doom metal record, a sub genre I hadn't dabbled in to until then. I was worried first that I wouldn't have much to say about it, but before the release I listened to a lot of doom records including the band's discography and finally wrote it. However, it was well received.

With Cairo Knife Fight, as well as for some other bands I added to the database, I wanted to review their latest work to bring more recognition to some less known bands around the world. I also consider this review to be one of my best yet.

Same goes for the most recent Spiritualized album, Sweet Heart Sweet Light. I feel it's a strong review and provides some insight on earlier records as well as a detailed view over the whole atmosphere of the record.

The review for Soulsavers' The Light The Dead See is one of my most recent work and stands out for me as an example of spontaneity. I listened to the album a few times and wrote the whole thing in about an hour. Still, it was well received by other Sputnikers, but because there wasn't much publicity around it there aren't many who have listened to the album yet.

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Digging: Carbon Based Lifeforms - Derelicts

Old 06-15-2012, 05:26 PM   #7
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: UK
Posts: 143
Hello, I'm Joe Hawker. Also known as Noctus. A contributor position is something I've been coveting for a while. As an active reviewer and poster on the site, contributing and being a more central part would be great. Despite my manner in posts I take my reviews very seriously. I contribute reviews and news articles on a very regular basis, growing and growing in numbers with every passing day here, and due to me being able to keep on top of current goings-on as far as bands or records go I'm an ideal choice for new releases since often I hear them before most people and very quickly start gathering and writing opinions on them, though not prematurely. Several of my reviews have been on release day. Though I haven't been here quite as long as other contributors, I feel that in my time here I've made very good use of it, there not being anyone who doesn't know of me and I'd like to think a good portion of them have enjoyed or appreciate a varying number of my reviews.

Reviews 26
Approval 98%
Site Rank 264

Soundoffs 94
News Articles 22
Band Edits 3
Album Edits 42

Album Ratings 844
Objectivity 84%

Last Active 06-17-12 12:33 pm
Joined 02-09-10

Forum Posts 132
Review Comments 6,631
Part of what makes me stand out from other contributors is that I let absolutely nothing get in the way of my opinion of an album - I go utterly by the album's merits and enjoyment value, as opposed to anything else that might affect it, such as popular opinion or controversy. I'm also not afraid to go against popular opinions, as a reviewer that's obviously an important aspect. But the biggest aspect that makes me stand out is my writing style, always trying to come from an experienced and fair perspective and not giving in to obvious review blunders, trying as hard as I can to make every review as interesting a read as I can make it. As for my speciality my obvious forte is black metal, doom metal, post-rock and experimental but I try to step outside this and review other things, I'd be interested in reviewing a variety of records as I'd like to think my taste and forte isn't too linear. My reviews vary from either new releases, releases where I have a strong opinion or releases that I think just need more attention.

Plagiarism is something I have never considered. I take my reviews seriously, and if they aren't my reviews, there really isn't a point in striving for this. It would just be putting my incompetence into the spotlight for everyone to see. There wouldn't be any reason to plagiarise considering the only reasons I want to do this is because I legitimately enjoy writing about what I think, and wanting to help out a website I frequent (and have frequented actively since joining) on a daily basis. Having added several news articles, bands, albums etc. over my time here I wouldn't be bothering if my motive were to steal other people's work.

Whether I'm a pain in the ass or not is obviously subjective (some love, some hate) but I've never been banned in my time here, the worst I've ever got is a couple of my posts deleted when I've went too far, which hasn't happened in quite a long time to my knowledge. That won't be changing, I'd like to think I've consistently been getting better and better as time continued on. As an active, popular, well-behaved and well-approved reviewer I think I'd be an ideal pick for the team, and I've love to be a part of it.


Though this wasn't a recent release when I reviewed it, it was mostly due to me thinking existing reviews didn't quite hit the mark for what I thought was a very interesting album worth writing about. It was a very well received review despite not being a recent release (or recent in terms of what you might think), and I'm proud of it.

This one was/is far more popular, despite being overshadowed by staff review afterwards. It was the one that got my reviews noticed and from there on people told me I should be part of the team here, from there I put a lot more effort in to put out more reviews, so it's quite a landmark for me.

This is a very recent one of a very recent release that didn't get as much attention as it deserved, but people are still discovering the album and posting on my review. Any possible negs weren't explained in the comments so I assume they're troll negs, like on just about every review with negs I have - but that's fine, I'm just glad people appreciated my writing.

This one is rather different because I reviewed this album from a very personal and emotional standpoint, as one of my favourite albums of all time. It was a difficult one to make an interesting and relatable read but I like to think I achieved it, which is why I'm proud of it, and I think it shows my versatility as a reviewer.

Perhaps my most popular review (though maybe for the wrong reasons :]), I think the balance between objectivity, fairness and humour in this review really stood out from my other ones.

Thanks for giving my stuff a read-through and I sincerely hope I get your consideration! I'll keep on contributing whether I make it or not, but I'd love to be part of the team.


Last edited by DarkNoctus; 06-17-2012 at 10:49 AM. Reason: (added url tags, fixed typos [: )
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Digging: Bell Witch - Mirror Reaper

Old 06-16-2012, 12:45 AM   #8
Fames Jord
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Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 924
Part I:

Hey, SputCrew - I'd love to be a Contributor on the site. I could try and sweep you guys away with big words and even bigger promises, but the truth is that I wasn't born to be a politician and that isn't changing anytime soon. As a start, my favorite genre of music is metal, but I'm certainly versatile - indie and hip-hop are also close friends of mine.

My work for Sputnik is fairly represented from these numbers:

Reviews 44
Features 7
Approval 99%
Site Rank 144

Soundoffs 131
News Articles 16
Band Edits 14
Album Edits 41

I've been a member of the website for 2 1/2 years, and I've been reviewing ever since. 35 of my reviews have been written in the past year - the majority of them have been for recent releases, and more than 5 of them have been featured on the front page. My only negs have stemmed from upset Cloudkicker fans and people that didn't take one BTBAM comparison lightly. I've started contributing more news articles lately, for trending musicians that have many a fan on Sputnik. I also add bands to the database when I see it necessary, and have contributed a fair number of releases to the site.

My stance towards reviews is fairly simple. People read reviews in order to be able to tell whether or not the music is their cup of tea; soaring diction and philosophical ramblings shouldn't get in the way of this fundamental importance. This is what sets my writing apart - I achieve a balance between writing about the album's contents, and what it makes me feel. This is a tightrope that I tread delicately every time I pick up the pen, because it's essential to remember that enjoyment of an album is comprised of many distinguishable parts. If the reader understands my opinion on an album, then they're one step closer to knowing if it's for them. My job has then been completed. I've really had a lot of experience with writing in the past year - studying it in school helps, especially while writing about music across the Internet. I've come to understand many things about reviewing, like how important it is to balance efficiency with delicacy. I also recognize the necessity for organization on a website such as Sputnik.

Plagiarizing isn't only uncool from an ethical standpoint (taking credit is never smiled upon it also deprives a writer of his or her potential. It's surprising that the act still takes place, considering the amount of opportunities that exist on Sputnik for aspiring writers. For instance, it helps me immensely to be able to receive feedback on my writing. What also helps is being able to assist others, reading through other reviews and deconstructing them. It's a feature that should be used more, and that could help everybody out. In addition, I can safely that I'm proud of my behavior on the site. I've had my moments of impatience, but overall I can get along with all sorts of users, and have never had reason to be banned.

Part II:

I'm including reviews that make me proudest, and that most accurately represent my writing style recently.

Beach House - Bloom.

[I feel positively about this featured review, and received much praise for it at the time.]

Of Montreal - Paralytic Stalks.

[I'm really proud of this one, especially the band coverage in the beginning.]

Jason Mraz - Love is a Four Letter Word

[This was my first negative review - I nabbed a feature for it.]

The Mars Volta - Noctourniquet

[It's easiest to write about things you understand well; this review is proof.]

A Lot Like Birds - Conversation Piece

[I wrote the main review for the album, and it's grabbed more than 16k views and received 167 replies. My writing's improved since then, but I still like this one for sure.]

Thanks for the time. It's a pleasure to be a part of Sputnik, and no matter what I'll continue to contribute to the site.

Last edited by Jade; 06-16-2012 at 12:59 AM.
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Old 06-16-2012, 02:47 AM   #9
Individual #452
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Join Date: May 2011
Location: UK
Posts: 57
I realise now that a lot of what comes after this sentence will focus on "what I have done" and "what I will do" in place of "what I am doing now". For the past few weeks - and for the next one - I've been knee-deep in exams so the normal procedure has been halted for a while. Even now my application has me bleary eyed; hunched over a computer screen at some incongruous hour in order to fit self-set quotas and deadlines. I'm sure that the more experienced writers will tell me to get used to it.

In my 13 months visiting Sputnik I have submitted 60 reviews, the newest of which have all been new releases. For me, reviewing is just a natural part of the music-listening process: it gives me a chance to distance myself from an album, to analyse it and dissect the reasons the album in question evokes the response it does. It's a curiosity that's pushed me to the more untouched genres of ambient, experimental and the more quirky corners of electronic. It's lead me to diversify, essentially, and in the context of a contributor position that means more variety from the higher-ups on the site. For many of the albums I review I find that I need to add them to the database myself, so often my reviews serve a double purpose as an introduction to a new style or artist, as well.

Before my little hiatus I also kept up with making lists pretty regularly. These almost always focused on introducing people to good, new and lesser known releases; mostly in an attempt to coax the lazy into exploring some areas of music more thoroughly. As a consequence of these lists, I also find myself adding an ever increasing number of artists and albums to the database. Three of these lists were featured in a space of three months, and it's a practice I certainly plan to continue once the seemingly endless expanse of summer arrives.

Best of all I'm a model citizen who has never had an argument with anyone ever, especially not over artistic influences or definitions of words.

tl;dr: lots of reviews, new releases, different genres than everyone else, lists, features abound, passionate lover.

I have chosen to include these reviews because they're indicative of what my reviews are like when I spend enough time on them. My free time is going to sky-rocket, so shortly I'll be able to spend enough time on all my reviews and possibly start pumping them out more frequently.

Pepe Deluxe - Queen of the Wave
This is an example of me wrestling with an album that's incredibly hard to really get your head around. It was also reposted by the artist on their facebook (quote: "wizard of words"), which made me a very happy person.

Bersarin Quartett - II
I just immensely enjoyed writing this review. It was also featured.

The National - Sad Songs For Dirty Lovers
Not a new release, but one that I understand fully. I'm really proud of the review for the writing, too. On another account because I've now reviewed it twice.

On top of everything else, being made Contributor would give me the added drive to really perfect my writing; something I've been rather obsessing over of late. I cannot tote huge numbers of views and pos', because frankly I don't think I'm reviewing the right albums for that, but I can assure you that my enthusiasm and commitment should more than make up for it. Thanks for your time.

Last edited by StrangerofSorts; 06-16-2012 at 04:56 PM.
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Old 06-16-2012, 03:31 AM   #10
mr. manager
hernan's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 350
My name is Hernan McKennan (email: and I'd like to apply for the position of Contributor. There are probably much more qualified users than myself for this position, but in my short time with in this site, I have taken my writing quite seriously. In the span of roughly 5 months, I have written 50+ reviews. Music has always been a passion of mine. I'm constantly listening to music and when I discovered Sputnik, I took up the opportunity to write reviews. I dont know if my writing style is really that different from anyone else's, but I always try to describe the music in the best that I can, meditating to the sound of the music and having the sounds of the instruments kind of describe themselves to me (if that makes any sense). I recently got hired to contribute for the but I love sputnik much more and would rather contribute here If given the option (or if I can do both). As I said, I love to write and I mostly write reviews for albums that don't already have reviews or albums that just manage to speak to me and are "calling" me to review them. I have written 5 reviews for new releases (1 even got featured), and 50 others for albums from various years and genres.
My Objectivity Score is 53%- most of my reviews are positive, but I do have some negative reviews.
I suppose my genres of "expertise" are: Progressive Rock, Jazz/Jazz Fusion, Psychedelia, and Classic Rock.

As for other contributions to the site, I have added a few bands (examples are Brooklyn Raga Association and The Moons) and albums to the database, though certainly not as much as others. I try to give out good feedback where I can. whether its reviews or personal stuff, here's 2 examples for both if you'd like to see them:
I'm far from perfect, but I try to be a good person. In a prior account I did some dumb things and I let my ego get the best of me, but I've tried to mature and better myself as "PaperbackWriter". I try to be kind to everyone and I've never participated in any derogative activities like "trolling" or insulting others. Anyway, here are a few of my reviews:

Artist: Omar Rodriguez-Lopez
Genre: Electronica

An example of one of my new release reviews.

Artist: Pink Floyd
Genre: Progressive Rock

I think this is perhaps one of my best reviews yet. It is one of my longer ones but I just really like what I wrote here and the way it flows.

Artist: Danger Mouse
Genre: Hip-Hop/Mash-up

This is one of the few hip-hop albums I've reviewed, it shows that I can branch out of my "comfort zone" genres.

Artist: Jazzanova
Genre: Nu Jazz

This is one of my more condensed reviews, though it shows that I can be informative without saying too much.

Artist: Weather Report
Genre: Jazz Fusion

This is perhaps one of my finest reviews, yet. At least I think so.

Well, anyway. I hope you consider me for the promotion, If not then I hope you find someone more qualified.

Last edited by hernan; 07-08-2012 at 07:31 PM.
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Old 06-16-2012, 01:59 PM   #11
Jommy Toughass
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Location: Illinois...and not Chicago
Posts: 2,298
Hallo. As just about everybody knows now my name is Greg Viessman. I have been on this site for five years now. I've had the luxury of being a contributor before back in 2008 when everyone and their brother was able to attain that status. These days I look to become one once more because I feel like I bring something good to this site. While the second half of 2010 and all of 2011 were more of a hiatus for me on here, I feel rejuvenated although I have only written three reviews this year.

The rest of this application should be pretty straight forward for the fine moderators/staff members. I review new albums from the metal genre, especially power metal. While I have only strayed away from reviewing metal only a handful of times, I have no problem reviewing other material. I've been banned only once (dumb Pokemon) and I pretty much can not stand the jackasses that roam on here. I add albums when necessary and really do enjoy talking to the user base about music; although it has not been as much over the past couple of years.

Reviews of Note:
Best review I have written. Although some dufus negged and unconventional, it still got the Jom Seal of Approval
A recent review for me. Said I would stop reviewing on this site at the beginning of the year, but the reviewing juices kept flowing.
Shows that I can do more than just metal.

I heart you all!!!!
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Old 06-16-2012, 02:42 PM   #12
rap music
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Location: Murderapolis
Posts: 2,972
hint to everyone, please use URL tags when linking to your reviews ('[url][(slash)url]')
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Old 06-16-2012, 07:49 PM   #13
Ryan Lizotte
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 1
Contributing Writer Application

Greetings, Sputnik's elite. My name is Ryan Lizotte, and I am a writer, deeply interested in a Contributing Writer position. As a user, I have contributed twenty reviews, and have every intention of increasing that number. I have never been banned or warned for anything posted on this site. Nearly three years ago, a friend introduced me to Sputnik and I was very drawn to it, rather than to AbsolutePunk or some similar site. I have seen my writing progress in leaps and bounds, and it is almost assuredly due to this site.

My taste in music has changed over the years (as is the case with anybody), but I have always been the type of person who can listen to any genre of music and enjoy it for what it is. Although most of my reviews on this site have been metal/alternative releases, I have expanded to other genres as well, notably rap/hip-hop. Most of my reviews have been new releases, but I have never shied away from reviewing an old favorite or two. My preference is to review new music because of the vibrant nature of it. Nothing feels much better than writing a great review of a new album only for the artist to gain hype or a buzz. On a side note, I have never plagiarized, and never will. To me, writing is therapeutic, as well as recreational. I write to get my personal opinions across, not somebody else's.

Last year, when I started college at Rutgers University, I began reviewing music for the Daily Targum, our school newspaper. As a staff writer, I contributed throughout the year, producing what I would consider to be some of my finest writing (see links below). I also made the decision to double major in English and Journalism, with hopes of pursuing a career in writing. Both of these decisions were made due to the experience I have received from this site. The user feedback (excluding the occasional idiotic remark) has definitely aided my writing; getting great feedback on a review reminds me of my strong points, while receiving negative feedback continually shows where I have room for improvement. When I give feedback on this site, I am honest in my interpretation of the review and give constructive criticism. Nothing bothers me more than somebody neg'ing a review simply because they "hated the album." The point of giving somebody feedback is to analyze his or her opinion, not give your own.

I graciously thank you guys for considering my application, and I will continue to look forward to reviewing for your site. In the meantime, I bid you farewell with my top five reviews (in no particular order):
Although I didn't like this album too much, I was really happy with how this review came out. When I went back to find my best reviews for this submission, I was surprised to see that this had over 11,000 views, and even more surprised to see the great feedback on it. This is not the best I've done, but I was confident that I made the points I wanted to make.
When I first heard this album, I was stoked to review it. I was very unexpectedly caught off guard by this album, and I wanted my review to convey that. I vividly remember that when I was listening to the album, I had known exactly what I loved about it, and wanted to write about. To me, my best reviews are where I can be as specific about what I liked, and I feel like I nailed it on this one. The feedback was also great with this, and it got more views than I had expected, which was definitely a treat.
Upon hearing Foxy Shazam, I was convinced they were the craziest, most out there band I had ever heard. Immediately, I began processing a review. I chose to include this review because it did not get a whole lot of attention (only about 3,000 views), but the user feedback was great. I feel like I hit every nail on the head in this review, and I knew that as soon as I had heard the first song, I was DYING to write up a review. One of the few times I was completely sucked into a band's sound and originality.
This is one of the first reviews I had in my school's newspaper, and a few of my friends read it and loved it, without knowing it was me. My editor also loved it, and only corrected a few punctuational mistakes. After writing this review, I truly had felt that my writing had improved, which was a great personal feeling.
It was this review that meant a real lot to me. Not only was this my absolute first review on anything other than Sputnik, but it was the first time I broke my traditional, metalcore mold. Also, I described exactly how I thought this album was (i.e. not that great). I will always look at this review as one of my most important, and it undeniably belongs on this list.

Once again, thank you so much for the consideration. Farewell.

Reviews 20
Approval 89%
Site Rank 365

Soundoffs 15
News Articles 5
Band Edits 0
Album Edits 2

Album Ratings 203
Objectivity 67%

Last Active 06-16-12 8:20 pm
Joined 11-08-09

Forum Posts 0
Review Comments 119
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Old 06-17-2012, 11:18 PM   #14
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Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: nyc
Posts: 12
Part I

Apologies I'm applying with ferociouslettuce rather than as aokuneff, but for some reason I can't log into the forums under that account, so ..

Because I pride myself on brevity, I'll try to keep myself short. In the year and a half or so I've been using this site, I've very much enjoyed swapping opinions, listening to new music, learning from the wealth of knowledge that (sometimes) is the userbase and adding my own thoughts and opinions from time to time. My reviews focus generally on easy to listen to electronic music mixed in with an indie or hip-hop review now and again. I take great pains to only review records that haven't been or have barely been covered by others, and I generally appreciate the response and discussion I start when I do so. Beyond that, most of my lists seem to get featured (and I work hard on them so I appreciate it), and, when possible, I try to add artists (like dirtybird and mothership label owner [L]Claude VonStroke[/L] that aren't yet in the database. I'm no voivod, but between both my accounts, I've added my fair share.

Part II --> I was upset that this thing hadn't been covered so I filled the void (Massive Attack and Burial fanboy here). 17 people seemed to like that I did so --> Gotta respect the classics. How this incredible album didn't have a review yet is beyond me, but this is the earliest review I wrote that I'm still proud of. --> I wrote (and I guess still do) for this site, which has decreased my sputnik output of late. But I realize that starting a discussion with sputnikers excited me more than writing elsewhere, where there isn't the same community feel. Anyhow, I'm pretty proud of what I wrote here. --> It's a travesty that more people haven't been immersed in Nosaj Thing. I'm just trying to do my part.

You guys run an incredible community, so keep it up, and either way, I'm sure I'll be popping in fairly (far too) often in the near future.
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Old 06-18-2012, 11:22 AM   #15
The One Who Knocks
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Michigan
Posts: 6
My name is Travis Marmon, and I'm applying for a contributing position to this site because I love music and writing more than anything else. I realize that I don't post reviews as often as I should, but I feel that happens because I try to be very selective about what I review and prefer quality over quantity. I tend to shoot for new releases that don't suffer from Sputnik hype and the subsequent drowning in a sea of write-ups--this is why I've never written a Mastodon review, for example, even though they are one of my favorite bands. Otherwise I try to review albums that don't have a quality review (or possibly a review at all) or have otherwise been neglected.

I could easily increase my reviewing numbers if need be. I can write quickly and don't need much time for editing. I've been writing for school newspapers since I was a junior in high school, and am currently a sports editor for my college paper. I do make frequent appearances in A&E though to review music, whether it be a tribute to Jaco Pastorius put on by our jazz band, a review for the new Roots album (also on this site), or a column on the greatness of Relationship of Command (seen below). I've been honing my writing for years and work well under pressure. My approval rating on this site stands at 91% over a five-year period of reviewing. Some of these reviews have even helped me get into college and earn scholarship money.

I specialize in metal, but I listen to tons of classic rock, hip-hop, hardcore and post-hardcore, alternative and post-rock. I live for concerts and enjoy nothing more than the energy of a live show. I play bass in a blues/rockabilly band that does covers of ska, hair metal and pop. I'm as big of a music nerd as they come.

I've never plagiarized or gotten in trouble with the site. I don't take over the front page and I despise unfunny troll reviews and reviewing fads.

Here are some of my best reviews:
Easily my most-viewed and most-approved review. I got quoted in the user's top 100 of 2010 for this, although sadly I didn't get featured.
This is a review for one of my favorite albums of all time, and one that really need it at the time. Reviews for albums I am passionate about come easily to me.
My knowledge of thrash has grown exponentially in the three years since this was written, but this remains one of my more solid all-around reviews.
This is for a series that my school paper did last semester. The web editor made an error on the last line--it should say "can only hope to achieve any time soon."

Last edited by HenchmanofSanta; 06-18-2012 at 07:28 PM.
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Old 06-18-2012, 11:46 AM   #16
st. captain freakout
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Indiana
Posts: 30
I'm applying for the position of contributing reviewer. My earlier reviews are admittedly utter crap, but after a break, I believe I have vastly improved in my reviewing skills. Although I haven't covered many new releases, my two most recent reviews were new releases, and there are/were some that I would like to review, but because of personal issues I haven't been able to keep up with new albums or use the site for the past month (it was by pure chance/luck that I saw this opportunity), which will continue for the next 2-3 weeks. The new releases I would like to cover would probably not be reviewed by many others, because of my deep knowledge of psychedelic rock (which has been greatly added/clarified in the database by yours truly), and reggae (one of the sputnik genres with a small following), and an affinity for black metal, albeit mainly in the winter months of the northern hemisphere. As previously mentioned, I have added many bands/albums to the database, and I also partake in the community aspect of the site with comments. I am not a pain in the ass and haven't ever been banned, or warned. -- This review is the first of a planned series of reviews to cover the vast discography of the band, which only has one review other than my two completed reviews. This is what I believe to be my favorite review, although I am completely sure I could churn out something vastly superior when I get the time. -- The second and last completed review of the discography, also uncovered, which I believe to be very good, but not my best, but it seems that a couple users think that I didn't give it enough credit. -- This was my first review after taking a short break because of the extremely poor quality of my first few reviews, and its where my skills really took off. I wrote about this album because King Crimson is one of my favorite bands if not my favorite, and it was the only album that spoke to me enough to write at the time.

In short, I have the necessary writing skills for the position, I would bring diversity to the musical palette of contributors with genres usually left uncovered, especially by the current staff/contribs (sans black metal), and I contribute to the site in more than just reviews, which I plan to do as soon as possible. Thanks for considering.

Last edited by tarkus; 06-18-2012 at 01:57 PM.
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Old 06-18-2012, 12:03 PM   #17
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 43
Contributor Application

Part I

Greetings, Sputnik staff! I shan’t bore you by making this application too long, but I’ll try to quickly highlight the reasons why I think I should be considered for a position as a contributing reviewer. It seems like other users are posting their stats to start things off so I’ll follow suit:

Reviews: 45
Approval: 95%
Site Rank: 110

Soundoffs: 73
News Articles: 3
Band Edits: 6
Album Edits: 40

Album Ratings: 9 (I recently wiped my ratings, but I had just over 1000)
Forum Posts: 29
Review Comments: 9,365

So, before I adopted the Gyromania moniker I was a lurker on Sputnik. I’ve seen this site and its writers progress very nicely over the course of 7 or 8 years, and I’ve been interacting with people for quite some time. So I think it’s safe to say I know this community very well, and I know what’s expected of contributing reviewers.

If I had to pick something that I think makes me stand out among my peers I’d likely note that I don’t stick to just one genre. That’s not to say that others do, but I tend to cover a lot (look at my reviews, you’ll see). I noticed a lot of people noting specific genres they specialize in, but truth be told, I don’t think there’s any particular genre I excel in writing about or focus on more than others. From Evanescence to Gonjasufi; Nickelback to Arvo Part - I’ll cover it all. Aside from that, I’ve helped a lot in the way of giving constructive criticisms to reviewers both old and new. I come to Sputnik and read reviews almost every single day, and I like to give detailed input to aspiring reviewers to help them better their writing. It’s also worth noting that I cover a lot of new releases and I’ve been lucky enough to secure 10 features so far.

In the past year and a half I’ve really focused on musical journalism. I’ve secured connections with press managers and bands, conducted a few interviews, and written for a couple of other sites. Music and writing are my greatest passions in life, and these are the reasons I believe I would be an integral part of the Sputnik team. So without further adieu, on to the reviews!

Part II

Arvo Part - Tabula Rasa
Perhaps a little highbrow, but I think this review helps showcase my analytical side. I tend to be more approachable with my writing these days, but certain albums demand a certain tone and angle, and I feel like I presented my points very well here.

Evanescence - Evanescence
As well as a lot of the unknown releases I cover, I don’t shy away from mainstream albums. This was my first feature and I’m proud of it.

Nickelback - Here and Now
I had to post this one. I’d say this is my most popular review (over 30 thousand views). Perhaps it’s a little bit too scathing and lacks objectivity, but I had a lot of fun writing this and I stand by my points.

Kate Bush - 50 Words for Snow
Of all of the reviews I’ve written, I’ve never captured the essence of an album’s sound quite like this one. It took me a while, but I’m very happy with how this turned out, and I think it showcases how descriptive and detailed my writing can be.

Death Grips - The Money Store
Yep. I have an alt account. I didn’t want people to find out that this is me, but I feel like this is one of my better reviews. This is an example of how I can go against the general consensus while remaining objective in my analysis.

So there you have it. I realize that of those 5 reviews 4 are from 2011, but I’ve been covering 2012 releases as well. I wanted to show my recent mewithoutYou review, but then I’d be posting too many links. A quick glance at my reviews will show that I cover basically nothing but new releases. If given the position, I can promise to review more frequently.

Thank you for taking the time to consider my application.


Last edited by Gyromania; 06-18-2012 at 12:10 PM.
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Old 06-18-2012, 12:50 PM   #18
"The KISS Guy"
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Location: lisbon, portugal
Posts: 86

Right. Let's cut the bullshit. You all know who I am. Seven years. 300 reviews. #1 ranked used. KISScography. Yeah. That guy.

Why would I be an asset to the site? Well for starters, I'm so old here that I remember when this was just an offshoot of MXTabs. For seconds, GO READ ANY OF MY REVIEWS! I'm not always the most popular person (for my music tastes and opinions) but I'm one of the best non-Staff writers on this site (and at the moment, it seems, one of the few non-trolls).

So yeah - that's my application. I've applied before, and never had any luck (at least since losing my Contrib spot in, oh, 2006 or so).But I feel that now is my time. I'm old enough and respected enough to earn it. That is all.

Review links: - To this day, the high point of my reviewing "career". Look at the approval rating on that baby! - What happens when I am left unbridled with a bad record? Reviewing epicness. - The beginning of the project that would eventually put my name down in Sputnik history. - Hey, I review current stuff, too!

Gentlemen, I'll be expecting your call.

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Old 06-20-2012, 08:19 AM   #19
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Location: Guilford, CT
Posts: 7
Hello staff of Sputnikmusic. I, pmmets07 (call me Perry), am applying for the somewhat daunting position of contributor. Over the past two years, I have accumulated 36 reviews for this fine website, more than half of which were written in 2012. I feel as though much of my work here on the site tends to fall under the radar, as I mainly concern myself with albums and artists that are, to an extent, lesser known and non-reflective of the taste of Sputnikmusic’s overall userbase. My goal as a reviewer is to review albums that I find to be “good” – good enough to want to write about – and promote their existence to unfamiliar readers of my work. Since May I have been writing for, a blog that requires five posts (usually reviews) monthly from each of its writers, and since joining the site, I have strictly covered new releases, predominantly in the pop punk and emo realm – a sect of music that is often neglected on Sputnik. By achieving contributor status, I feel as though my reviews will attract more views, allowing the new releases that I cover to reach a wider, or at least more attentive, audience.

As a writer, my biggest concern is to ensure that no readers will be “bored” while reading my reviews. I attempt to speak plainly when describing musical characteristics or personal reactions to an album, but place a great importance of implementing variety in my work. Doing so has proven to be a difficult task, especially when I am reviewing many similar releases at a somewhat rapid pace, but I feel as though each of my recent (past six or so months) reviews is “different” from the rest in one way or another. I try to include some sort of variable focal point for each piece, whether it be an introspective opening paragraph, a posed hypothetical scenario, or a personal anecdote.

As a frequent user of the site, it would be a great honor to be promoted to a contributor position. I already find plenty of enjoyment in simply coming to the site on a day-to-day basis to discuss bands or albums with likeminded Sputnikers, post lists that may or may not receive upward of ten comments, and add albums to the database that usually remain with a single rating from me alone (although I often boast about the fact that I added Joyce Manor to the database). Whether or not I receive the title of “contributor,” my presence on the site will remain. At the end of the day, I keep coming back because I enjoy my time here on Sputnikmusic.

This is a review in which I really pinpointed the writing style that I constantly strive to achieve. I feel as though it demonstrates an effective balance between seriousness and humor.

I am particularly proud of this Sharks review because No Gods is a bigger release than I usually cover and the album is sonically different than most of my music library. This piece demonstrates writing from outside of my comfort zone, but I still feel as though it is one of my strongest reviews to date that reinforces my approach of “to-the-point without being boring.”

This review, I believe, marks a distinct point in my writing hobby in which I found my niche. I finally felt comfortable discussing something other than the immediate content of the album, and was able to offer personal insight and reflection on not only the album’s musical content but also its message and purpose in the grand scheme of things.
Thank you.
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Old 06-24-2012, 08:54 PM   #20
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Posts: 35
Hello staff, my name is Nathan Flynn and I'm applying to be a Contributor here at Sputnik. Due to other time commitments, I haven't written as many reviews in 2012 as I would have liked to, only 6 of my 41 reviews are from this year, but I almost always cover new releases that nobody else on the site does. I think my approval rating (85%) is a bit misleading too because a lot of my negative feedback came when I was just getting started; I haven't received a neg in my last 9 reviews. Furthermore, I try to avoid writing reviews for albums that have a review already unless I feel I can offer an intriguing viewpoint- and my different take is more often than not criticized.
My goal of offering unique viewpoints is one of the main reasons why I'm applying to be a Contributor here, feedback be damned. My specialty as a writer is reviewing pop and hip-hop albums, two genres that aren't given very much coverage by the Staff and contributors- hip-hop in particular, whose only writer is Sobhi and occasionally Deviant. I think I am very competent at reviewing these genres and had a review featured for my write-up of Gucci Mane and Waka Flocka Flame's collaboration album "Ferrari Boyz." As a contributor, I wouldn't limit myself to these genres, but I think I can fill a partial void that is definitely present on the site.

As far as contributions to the site go other than reviews, I try my hardest to update the database whenever I find a new artist or release- although this is a rarity to say the least. I have been known to argue passionately over things as trivial as the oxford comma (I hate it) and the usage of the semicolon (the most underrated piece of punctuation) while still remaining civil in my discourse. I add news articles whenever I see an interesting thing on a band's Facebook page and have never plagiarized in a news article or otherwise. I have also never been banned for bad behavior and I have a pretty good reputation among some people who are already Staff or Contributor. I would love to join the ranks with my friends and I hope y'all find my writing suitable enough for me to realize my ambition.

A recent review of a new album that best demonstrates my approach to reviewing: concise, informative and all-encompassing. I try to give an idea of the album as a whole without drawing on too many examples from within the album because I think that reviews that offer a lot of "evidence" get boring.
Another well-received review of a hip-hop album that elicited far more discussion than the Waka Flocka review. I like this review because a lot of reviews I write are for albums that I care about, but I'm not sure other people would. I think my review made people want to listen to Camp and that's something I'm proud of.
This review shows I'm not just a one-trick pony and that I'm adept at researching and fully understanding an album. It also was called "the most agreeable and relatable [sic] review I've ever read on Sputnik," so there's that too.
I wrote this for my school newspaper and I liked it enough to post here first. This album had already received the Best New Music tag by the time I got around to it but I thought my voice had to be heard. Just another example of me being willing to review different styles of music; and it has one of my better intro paragraphs.

Update: I got 2 negs for my Maroon 5 review so my statistic earlier no longer stands. Also, I just realized I spelled Sobhi's name wrong, so that's why I edited.

Last edited by FromDaHood; 07-02-2012 at 01:43 PM.
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Old 06-29-2012, 10:16 AM   #21
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Posts: 3
Sputnikmusic Moderators and Staff,

I believe that a promoting me to Contributor position would be a valuable move for the site, one in which I could continue to consistently write reviews at a high quality and expose users of the site to new and interesting releases. I’ve proven in my short time as a member here (I joined in late December of 2011) under the username carouse that my reviewing is an advantageous asset to the community. Because I have a relatively sparse presence on the site in terms of comments and lists (though this can be seen as advantageous considering I don’t have any “behavioral” blemishes and you can be sure I wouldn’t damage the site’s reputation), the brunt of my résumé should be concerned with my reviews. I have 22 reviews under my belt, which averages to a nearly one-per-week, and I put considerable time and effort into each which I believe elicits a level consistency that you should want from a Contributor. Where my Contributorship can be said to have become more valuable than other applicants is in the content of the music I attend to. I’m well-aware that my résumé isn’t as lengthy as some of the other applicants-- this makes sense, I’ve only been here a comparatively short time.

This puts me at an advantage though, I believe, because I think Sputnikmusic could benefit from a “new blood” approach to the promoting of new Contributors. I hope that you might consider me as a more desirable candidate precisely because of my lack of time here; it makes me stand out from the competition, who seem generally entrenched in the same sort of trends. As opposed to writing positive reviews for more popular releases (which I do attempt to keep up with as well), the joy I receive from reviewing comes predominately from allotting smaller acts coverage that they would probably have not received at Sputnik otherwise. This is why you see that much of my writing is centered on a few genres more than others-- sludge, black metal, and hardcore punk. That being said, my reviews also display the fact that my writing style is adaptable; and I pride myself on being able to cover a plethora of genres with an apt level of proficiency and personal flair.

In short, by promoting myself to Contributor you would be adding a member set on offering a consistent, once-per-week review of new releases sure to intrigue many Sputnikmusic users, helping smaller artists achieve more exposure in the process. Additionally, your Staff and Contributor team would be covering more of the music spectrum than before, an obvious positive factor. Please glance over a few reviews that I believe display the qualities I’ve just delineated upon; and while doing so, please consider promoting me to a Contributor position.

Thanks for reading, and if you have any further questions please feel free to PM me on the review site at my profile, here:
Meth Drinker - Meth Drinker
Here’s one of my first reviews that gained some semblance of popularity (56 comments and counting). I believe it does a proficient job at exemplifying my ability to be simultaneously concise and descriptive.
Chromatics - Kill For Love
Another one of mine that achieved more views, my writeup on Kill For Love shows how I can employ a more in-depth style of writing, as well as how passionate I feel about one of my favorite releases yet this year. I’m very proud (and maybe just a little too hopeful, in saying the following) that I’ve exposed many users on the site to this release.
Marissa Nadler - Sister
Another review for a new release, this writeup was featured a week or so ago. Again, I believe it aptly displays the proficiency with which I can write about many different genres of music because I don’t have a “default,” or “go-to,” a skill I believe would be a valuable asset on your Staff and Contributor team.
Karcavul - Rawctaver
Lastly, I’ll offer a review of mine that didn’t receive nearly as much attention. Nevertheless, it exemplifies both my descriptiveness within brevity, as well as my stubbornness to bring attention to deserving new music.

Again, thanks for reading, and please consider me for promotion.
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Old 07-07-2012, 07:43 AM   #22
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Location: Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK
Posts: 25
Hi. My name is Ali. I've been a member of this site for nearly four years, and now that I'm approaching the hundred review mark I feel that I'm finally ready to apply for the position of contributor. During my time on Sputnikmusic, I'd like to think that I've become recognised as a friendly and well-liked user. Much of this can be put down to my general pleasant demeanor, but I believe that the bulk of my reputation has been built on details such as providing honest feedback, offering advice and only making positive contributions to discussions. This approach has gained the respect of fellow users (even those with whom I share very little common ground), whilst also ensuring that my disciplinary record has remained squeaky-clean.

At the time of writing, I've accumulated a total of 99 reviews, the majority of which have been posted in the past year or so. This surge in activity is largely down to having joined the likes of Xenophanes and iFghtffyrdmns at, an activity which has done much to improve both the frequency and consistency of my writing. Music journalism is in fact something I wish to make a career of further down the line, so I'm always looking for further ways to develop, what with it being such a competitive industry and all.

Although I cover a wide variety of musical styles, I feel that my forté lies in genres such as indie, alternative rock and folk. On top of that, I have a particular interest in bands hailing from Scotland, and do my best to provide coverage for acts who aren't particularly well know outside of that country. Most of my reviews - especially in recent times - have concerned new releases, though I do also enjoy revisiting old favourites, as well as providing write-ups for records currently without one. I myself am not a musician, but although this leaves holes in my knowledge I do believe it hands me a certain advantage. I'm always mindful of the audience, and do my best to make my writing enjoyable and accessible to readers of all divisions. This means that I never delve into the mind-numbing depths of musical theory, and instead tend to focus on other aspects such as structure and fluency. Personally, I feel there's nothing worse than a writer whose sole purpose is to exhibit their superior knowledge and grasp of the English language, so while I'm perfectly competent in these areas I prefer to keep things simple and effective.

Reviewing is by no means the only contribution I make to the site. I've long since made a habit of adding new albums and bands to the database, and do so pretty much whenever something I take an interest in is missing. I'm also a terrible perfectionist, so whenever I say an error - say a dodgy tracklist or unofficial album entry - I always make a move to amend or remove it. I also add the occasional news article, although if I'm honest I feel that this is a feature which as a whole could do with an overhaul. They might not receive much attention, but I feel that small contributions such as these are just as important to the site as its reviews, so I'm more than happy to knuckle-down and do the dirty work.

Finally, I solemnly swear that I never have and never will bow to the evil temptations of plagiarism.

The Enemy - Streets In The Sky

Negative reviews are always the most fun to write, especially when the band in question gives you so much to feed from. I'm not the most witty user on the site, but I think this review proves that I'm capable of having a dig, and that I also have something resembling a sense of humour.

The Walkmen - Heaven

Heaven is my album of the year so far, so naturally I took a little more time than usual over this review. I think I managed to convey the whole sense of grandiose and sophistication pretty well.

The Tower And The Fool - How Long

I usually find that average and moderate reviews are the toughest to write, but I think I found a good balance between positive and negative points here.

Holy Esque - Holy Esque EP

This was my attempt to spread my enthusiasm for an up-and-coming Scottish band I've become slightly obsessed with. It was a task which required quite a lot of persuasive description, and overall I believe I did a pretty good job. Those who gave it a go seemed to enjoy it too, which made the whole thing seem worthwhile.

Thanks for reading!
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