The Rumpus, a new-ish blog created by industrious Bay Area novelist and essayist Stephen Elliott, has tapped Rick Moody to blog on a regular basis about…music. This is a little troubling, because to the best of my recollection Moody’s last piece of sustained music writing was a tedious, humid paean to Sleater-Kinney that somehow turned into the official bio for the band’s final album, The Woods. I mean, c’mon:
Now, before us, we have The Woods, which appears in the Sleater-Kinney catalogue as opus number seven, and like many things with sevens on it, it features an itch, a need to try new things.
Was it a parody of the written liner notes that appear on the backs of Z-grade jazz albums in the dollar bin? It was awfully hard to tell, if so. Moody’s first blog entry doesn’t seem quite so bad. But he is playing the same old, tired, “the album is dead” card that so many music bloggers do, and he suggests (threatens?) that his thoughts will have larger implications for the radio and publishing industries too:
The methodology is completely democratic and wide open, therefore, and the style is going to be my actual style, which is to say all tangled and slightly incoherent as written at 8:00 AM on a Saturday morning (like this post) before I’ve even had a cup of tea. The lessons I’m imagining to find are lessons that are not confined to music making, but ones that might have implications for rear guard industries like book publishing or, at another extreme, radio (where I also occasionally ply my hand).