Posted by: willenvelope | November 24, 2008

Rubbish reviews, part 2


[From The Rolling Stone Record Guide (1st ed., 1979), edited by Dave Marsh and John Swenson. Review by Dave “The Hater” Marsh. Four years later, in the next edition, the “seminal” album receives five stars.]



  1. So are these two separate Rolling Stone Guides? The edition used in the first entry is marked 1983, and this one is marked 1979. Just curious.

  2. Yes, the first one (The Rolling Stone Record Guide) came out in 1979. The second edition (The New Rolling Stone Record Guide) came out in 1983, with updated entries as well as a lot of repeated material. Both of those were edited by Dave Marsh and John Swenson, old Rolling Stone regulars.

    Then in 1992, Anthony DeCurtis edited The Rolling Stone Album Guide, and everything was rewritten.

    The two Television albums received 3 stars apiece in the ’79 book and were downgraded to 2 each in the ’83 book; in ’92, Marquee Moon got 5 stars (all-time classic) and Adventure, I believe, got 3 1/2. The Hell album got panned in ’79, with 2 stars, but was a five-star classic by ’83.

    I’ve spent a lot of time with these books over the years.

  3. That is absolutely hysterical and confirms my theories about the majority of music hacks..there are some excellent ones out there though.The Richard Hell review is funny as f**k ,even if it is,to quote Mark E.Smith,”Self satisfied,smug”.It kind of reflects the ambivalent attitude towards U.S. artists from their own music press who then garner praise in the U.K. only to find that they are The Dogs Bollocks all of a sudden in their own country.
    The Pretenders were another band who were adored/ignored in the U.K./States respectively early on in their career (when they released imho one of the best debuts/follow-ups of all time).Like yr blog btw 🙂

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