Jacquibim
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Last Active 06-28-15 9:41 am
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Criteria For Rating Albums

This is something I've always wondered, what factors do you include when rating an album? I rthink I covered the most common factors, even if a couple of them are completely ridiculous, in rmy opinion. Tell me your personal criteria for assigning a value to an album, and also if I've rmissed anything here. Just to clarify, I go exclusively on personal enjoyment, nothing else.
1The Beatles
Abbey Road


Popularity/commercial success:
I hope there aren't too many people here who use this as a means of judging
albums, but we all know people who do. The perennial "if it's so good, why haven't I
heard about it?" line has to be one of the most vapid and irritating things I hear in
regards to music.
2The Velvet Underground
The Velvet Underground & Nico


Cultural relevance/Influence:
I know there are a lot of people who factor this into their ratings, which makes no
sense to be but oh well. All too often I see people listing faults with "classic"
albums but dropping a perfect score on them simply because it's The Beatles, Led
Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Pink Floyd. This is especially annoying when people will do
nothing but praise a new album and then give it a 4 or 4.5 saying, in light of all of
its strengths, "it will never beat the classics".
3Between The Buried and Me
Colors


Technicality/complexity:
We all know people who think that just because a song is difficult to play or
structurally complicated that it's the be all and end all of music. Common among
prog metal or djent fans, who will endlessly defend something by requesting that
you play something faster or write/record/produce an album on your own and on
the spot else you're just a jealous hater.
4Charles Mingus
The Black Saint and The Sinner Lady


Originality/creativity:
A sense of originality can do wonders for an album for many peolpe, and a lack
thereof can severely inhibit it. No matter how good a melody or drum pattern is, if
I've heard it a thousand times before in prior records, it's going to have less of an
impact.
5Nirvana
In Utero


Nostalgia:
If an album takes you back to a particular time in your life, even if it's the gayest
shit known to man.
6Beherit
Seventh Blasphemy (demo)


Obscurity/eliteness:
We all know those special little people who prefer to use music as a means of self-
gratification than something to be enjoyed. These people often have the initials
"MS" and are insufferable fuckwits.
7The Tallest Man on Earth
The Wild Hunt


Lyrical content:
Many people believe lyrics can turn an otherwise unspectacular album into
something breathtaking, but can also break an album that is competent musically.
The most obvious example is hip-hop, but this reigns true in practically every genre
that incorporates lyrical wordplay.
8Godspeed You! Black Emperor
F#A# (Infinity)


Emotional impact:
This is usually a combination of many of the factors above, and is different for
every single person, but nevertheless is used by a lot of people to argue the case
for one album of another. Thing is, an emotion doesn't have to be be ostensibly
"enjoyable", many people listen to albums because they evoke feelings of sadness,
grief and anger. Different strokes for different folks I guess.
9Autism
The Crawling Chaos


Objectivity:
By far the most backwards criteria on this list. I never quite got the idea of
"objectivity" when judging an album, considering music (and art in general) is a
completely subjective thing. I often see people rating their favourites lower than
more commonly acclaimed albums, usually throwing the word "objective" around, as
if there's some kind of consecrated standard upon which art is judged.
10In Flames
Whoracle


Personal enjoyment:
Complete subjectivity, this depends upon limitless factors, many of which could
have been listed above already. Personal enjoyment constitutes my entire ratings
criteria (and a lot of other people I can imagine), irrespective of whether or not an
album is critically lauded or panned. This can make reviewing a little difficult
sometimes, because I have to explain why I like something or not even if the
reason is totally ridiculous.
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