honeyiscool wrote:I don't know how it could even be argued that Annie Clark is technically brilliant and inventive. That's just fact. Whether you like her innovations is another matter, but it's a fact that she's doing really innovative things, and at the core of her innovations is her unique style of play. She's not unlike Tom Morello in that sense: can play traditionally, chooses not to.
My main point is how the article asserts much but provides little to no evidence. You've done exactly the same. If that works for you and how you negotiate the world, then that is what works for you.
So you say. But all music critique is so subjective and rooted in opinion that it is my belief that Annie Clark being an innovative and brilliant guitarist is completely self evident once you listen to her playing, whereas, say, Slash, he's good but is he innovative? I don't know. I say this in the sense of being able to digest what they're doing and figure it out easily. Many of the best known guitarists do difficult sounding things that are actually rather simply put together. Things follow a shape, patterns, boxes. I find that Clark does things that can't be figured out right away. And she plays with a bit of abandon which means she does mess up a lot, but I don't think this necessarily keeps her from technical excellence. I think the mistakes are an important part of her style.
So me personally? As a classical pianist turned guitarist, I can figure out a Jimmy Page or a Slash part pretty easily. It's technically difficult (sometimes) but it's musically simple. I don't feel that way about Clark. It takes time for me to figure her music out. There's something going on there. Her writing doesn't follow the whole multiples of 4 thing either. And while one could strike her innovations as mistakes that work, I don't think they are. I think they're on purpose. Or maybe because she went to music school, I'm seeing innovation and complexity where there is none. But I see it, nonetheless.
I admit that I favor guitarists who don't play in a pentatonic box over those that do. Probably because I think it's a waste of musical talent when you're otherwise brilliant but you have one scale you can play. One of my favorite guitarists basically plays fun sounding things that are fast but clearly just hammer-ons and pull offs with clever note choices and capos in the right place. I find that to be technically innovative and brilliant, too. And of course I use pentatonic boxes and typical guitar patterns. I just don't rely on them. I want to be more like Annie Clark. I love shredders, too, but at the end of the day, my #1 guitarist is Tanya Donelly so that probably says something about me.
But see, have I actually provided evidence? I just don't know that it's possible. It's all opinion. But just because something is subjective doesn't make it impossible to establish reality. If one person sees things one way, it's possible to declare it and know that the listener or the reader will know that it's opinion. In a world where most people favor Drake over Mozart, any fact over musical excellence isn't even possible. And I'm not saying that Drake sucks because that's also impossible to declare as fact. I'm saying that under a truly objective standard, we probably can't even truly establish why Mozart is good. And yes, I said it's fact that Annie is a brilliant guitarist. But since objectivity isn't even possible, I'm just saying that I don't even see it possible to see it any other way unless you have an agenda to be contrarian. Like I said, fact is perhaps more like musical consensus. If enough people see it one way, it becomes fact. Mozart had many critics in his life. Many classic films were dismissed at first. I'm just convinced that in a few decades when people aren't annoyed by her persona, they'll see that she was brilliant. Because it's true for me.