Monday, 18 April 2016

Incoherent Rage

Alright, troops? Vile has asked me, Mad Cyril, to write this article, cos he is too shy to say it. But we are getting well pissed off with books like this, and the line that everyone's a critic. Everyone's got a cock or a fanny, pretty much, but that doesn't make them porn-stars. Everyone's got an opinion, right. But that's not the same thing as being a critic.

What's that? You've heard it before? Yeah, well, you ain't been listening, son. Pay attention this time, and I won't have to pay you a visit in the middle of the night. Okay? Good.

Let's start with some basics. 'A critic' ain't just someone who writes for an established organ. A critical outlook denotes a set of skills put into operation, and that can happen anywhere. Honestly, I wish everyone were a critic. But plenty of people mistake received opinion for criticism. Plenty of people review, but that ain't criticism. 

But who gives a fuck? It's semantics, innit? I wanna get down to brass tacks, cos this snarling ball of rage needs a steam valve.

Unless equal respect is given to all public statements - and that respect includes the odd proper (literary not literal) beating of dumb-ass opinion - I might as well spend my time doing something useful, like making porno in the back of a flat roof pub. 

At the moment, people care about critics in the same way I care about them: if they say they like me, I love them. That's not good enough. Some artists moan about star ratings when they get four of them, claim that they are despoiling art when they get two. 

Using critique as some kind of 'users' guide' to performance is just spinning out the old capitalist bullshit - art as product, the critic as a consumer advocate. The reason why mainstream media makes such a big fuss about the expertise of its 'critics' against bloggers comes down to a turf war. I do critical work, but I'm not here to provide a consumer service.

It's about the debate, sunshine, furthering the discussion of the ideas that the artist reckoned were worth spending all that time expressing. Reviewing is part of that - a 'good' production, what with the actors giving their all, helps get the ideas across. Actually, the purpose of art in society is worth a chat, too. 

I am raging. Too raging to keep typing. The anger needs to settle, I need to drink less coffee. Just look at the bit in bold. I'm fucking off to try to relax.

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