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“Cannot discern what is so great about it”: Rock’s Backpages

Barney Hoskyns, the co-founder and editorial director of Rock’s Backpages:

As a staunch and loyal fan of Dame Katherine, I have to confess to some surprise at the plethora of 5-star reviews elicited by 50 TYPES OF SNOW. I’ve spent a week with the album and cannot discern what is so great about it. Even if you don’t miss the wild pop genius of the ’80s and love the mature piano melancholia of middle-aged Bush, she did the latter a lot better on AERIAL … Only on “Wild Man” does she pull off the kind of haunting pop classic we remember …. Or am I missing something?


“A great experience, but it all feels somewhat flat”: Muzik Discovery


Hear Mike Ragogna’s interview with Kate


  1. Neil

    Yes you’re missing something

  2. Neil

    You are missing the correct title.

  3. Rod

    In his book ‘Interpretation and Overinterpretation’, Umberto Eco talks about the infinite number of interpretations public art, art created for an audience, will be open to. All these interpretations will be valid. Some will be more valid than others; and that will often be down to the critical faculties of the reader, viewer, listener, of the text (any text; art, a book, music), and the amount of effort they put into the act or reading – but everyone can, and will, have their own interpretation of the work.

    When someone says “I don’t get why other people get it”, that’s not the same as saying “I don’t get it”. What they are really saying is “there is only one way to interpret this, my way, and every other interpretation is wrong”. If I were writing this piece, and ’50 Words for Snow’ didn’t work for me, I’d say, “I don’t get it”, wouldn’t you? But I would never dream of attempting circumlocution to say “I don’t think it’s great, and I don’t know why anyone else thinks it’s great”. Is he missing something? Yes, I think the overwhelmingly positive reviews from across the world would suggest he is. Poor lamb.

  4. pip

    He’s certainly missing the correct title for the album.

  5. edov

    Yeah completely missing it Barney… and that’s okay!

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