Ask a music journalism insider anything. I don't work at p4k but I do have plenty of inside info regarding them and all major publications and their writers. I will answer any questions.
that's a really good question; the major, major publications such as Pitchfork, Stereogum, FADER, and others are mostly, if not entirely, pr-driven and have no problem with accepting cash for reviews. there are plenty of artists that are hyped from them that are bought out by pr firms and major media companies.
for example, Pitchfork, since they were bought by Conde Nast, have a big problem with their track reviews:
Conde Nast is owned by this even bigger company, which produce film trailers. Conde Nast will reach out to Pitchfork and ask them to hype up a song they will be using in one of their upcoming film trailers. That's to just give you a taste of how they do business.
How do they find people to write up reviews? Is there any set of skills, knowledge etc that tend to be valued, or do they just get whatever freelance writer available who can put together some paragraphs that might pass a layman's smell test?
I don't honestly know, if it helps, you can see this answer of mine as it may answer anything else from you: >>61547761
not much drama honestly. people seem to be fine with her in the journalism industry but she isn't without a very small number of critics of her own. but mostly she's widely respected, ironically. i personally don't like her very much, as with most of p4k.
Okay but that's more along the lines of /how/ they get a track to be reviewed. What about major album scores, predominantly albums made by niggers? Is there funding from the Jewish Medial League going towards niggers making music to appeal to domestic white women? Thanks man, love your work.
How many P4k staff members has Meredith Graves fucked?
Is there rules outlined as to how sociopolitically leftist things have to be? (eg. "This many black releases need BNM a month", "we need more white male shaming", etc) or do they only hire pure blooded cucks so they don't have to?
How much does a good score cost?
How does an artist go about "scratching the back" of P4k to get positive exposure?
they (p4k) definitely reach out to small, independent journalists, even ones who have tumblrs. of course you have to send them a resume and have to have some set of skills but it's actually not that difficult if you're at least a half-decent writer.
they then force you to cover shit that you wouldn't normally cover on your own, give BNMs to albums you dislike, that sort of shit, which, once again, is completely pr-driven. i know people who have ditched places like p4k because of this.
no dude, nothing to do with jews lol
if you're talking about pop-rap, trap, and the R&B they've been covering lately, there's an easy answer for that: p4k LOVE to hop on whatever's trendy, and black music seems to be incredibly popular with tumblr users, which p4k monitor so they can praise whatever a site like tumblr or even twitter finds trendy. it's just trend-following in the end. it won't last in a couple years down or even less, trust me, man.
1) I honestly don't know lol. A wonderful music review site called Cokemachineglow (who sadly stopped running recently, they were one of the last great music review sites) called Meredith out on her bullshit on their public official twitter recently saying something like "if you don't like perfect pussy you're a mean misogynist!!" mocking her speech mannerisms. you should check that out.
2) no, not really, but you can refer to this post of mine if it answers anything related to that: >>61547889
3) there's no set number, really. it can range from anything, so long as it's funded by a good pr firm and it gets buzz in the end.
4) be buddies with the writers/editors on social media, dm/follow them on twitter, strike up conversations, be nice, make yourself comfy in that scene, and you'll get covered for sure. being buddies with p4k writers is the only way you can get covered without paying lol.
1) why does rolling stone suck the dick of u2, springsteen, coldplay, and other mediocre """"legendary"""" artists that much? specially when considering other publications do NOT like them, or their recent stuff, at least.
2) how do p4k scores get calculated?
1) it's because the hacks at rolling stone have a mostly rockist view on music, and they're also heavily funded by the labels who still put out albums by those bands to praise them so they can still gain some sort of relevance. it's like their last resort.
2) it's mostly a calculation of all of the staff writers and editors' opinions + how much a pr firm or label funds them and how trendy enough p4k thinks the album will be to land in the BNM section.
Are there ever instances where reviewers have to tone down their praise? As in deliberately reduce enthusiasm in order to increase the importance of this subjective "score" their business is based on?
there's plenty of instances where a reviewer wants to give an album a certain score and the publication just won't allow it; both with praising and panning an album. sometimes a reviewer would be lucky to have their own say in what score an album gets at all, since big publications force the reviewer to praise shit they dislike or pan shit they love just to earn a quick buck.
there are a few writers who lurk that thread actually, yea. most namely Zoe Camp, who blatantly visits here all the time. we talk regularly and she even told me this herself. she's admitted she's a /mu/tant.
Zoe Camp actually used to go on here back in high school. she still visits here but not as often, she used to full-time post when she was in high school, just before she got a job at p4k but when she was doing shit for Tinymixtapes.
and i actually don't write for any publication lol, i'm just deeply embedded in this scene and know plenty of people in the journalism industry.
some of them don't go on here or don't care about this place, some of them pretend to "fight" against racism and bigotry yet still somehow embrace 4chan lingo and memes, and then there's just Zoe Camp, who's a /mu/tant working for them.
>big publications force the reviewer to praise shit they dislike or pan shit they love just to earn a quick buck.
So you're saying that somewhere at the top, the executives are calling all the shots and the employees at pitchfork are just drones writing exactly what they're told?
Why does Pitchfork do that thing where they'll give an album anywhere from a score of 8.0-8.4 and talk about how amazing it is but not give it Best New Music? Did the artist just not pay them enough, or what gives?
the employees/reviewers at p4k are hired to just cover whatever the executives want, yes, because they're getting paid and that's all that matters to them. the big leagues like p4k are completely about the money and business and pr firms and not about actual music criticism, which is always why the smaller yet still respected blogs/sites are the safer bets for reading/following.
a lot of the reviewers don't honestly care about music that much, and just see it as any other day job. they just get told to hand out a BNM to an album or do a write-up of an artist and essentially copy-and-paste a press release email-- that is why these reviews p4k publishes seem so fake and pandering to the artist's background:
p4k are essentially repeating what a press release tells them in an email, or any email a blogger might receive that's like "hey! check us out, we're an indie rock band from connecitcut inspired by the likes of modest mouse and joy division, here's our latest lp!". they're just told to be a hype machine without any kind of honesty attached.
If I wanted an album to be reviewed somewhere would the publication write that I asked how much I asked to pay them for it? Would they out me as a self shill, or give me a quote, and how much roughly would it be?
i'm honestly going pretty in-depth here dude, and am saying shit that's kinda hard to make up on the spot. believe me or don't, whatever you wish. this stuff is known within music industry journalism/critic circles but everybody keeps it hush-hush.
not really since pr firms can flip their opinion on a dime but everybody and i mean EVERYBODY hates Chris Ott, as a critic.
they're good friends with the executives, as Cole mentioned in an interview once.
>twitter avi is pic related
>first tweet starts "tfw"
It's definitley possible this person is a /mu/ poster
Hey OP, this thread is great.
I have noticed that p4k is pushing a more socially concious agenda in their reviews and analysis of modern music. For example, the Gnaw Their Tongues/Dragged Into Sunlight review was bashed for glorifying misogynistic violence, which annoyed me. Where does that shit come from? Is p4k entirely PR bought, or is there any integrity?
Also, any albums you know of that the staff didnt like but still gave BNM because $$$?
i go kinda in depth about what causes the whole "SJW" agenda (i don't ever use that word but whatever lol) behind their latest reviews here, but it's basically hopping on the tumblr/twitter trend-bandwagon: >>61547889
there are plenty of reviews that weren't bought out by pr firms before Conde Nast bought p4k, but p4k still weren't entirely clean either. but now they're 100% bought out. they're too far gone, that was the final nail in the coffin.
fuck, sorry dude. i misread your last comment.
oh dude ALL of the BNM's now are completely bought out by pr firms and the writers either dislike the albums they're praising or just don't have any opinion on it altogether.
I wouldn't doubt that they sell reviews. I heard that Lil Wayne paid for a good review in XXL and everyone were calling it out because they gave it such a high score. Info got leaked later.
I'm glad you asked this.
Tiny Mix Tapes (a lot of their writers know about all of this shit and hate p4k with a mighty vengeance, TMT are never bought out and hate any major publication that is).
Cokemachineglow (even though, they're not around anymore, you can still read their old reviews)
some of FACT Magazine, even though they can tend to be bought out sometimes they're still clean enough.
The Quietus (they're pretty solid).
Why didn't p4k review FloriDada? What do they have against Animal Collective all of a sudden? I actually saw some truly nasty, non-constructive tweets from some writers who i'd have thought of all people would be able to appreciate the subjectivity of music.
and the thing is is that p4k's writer will get these PR emails in their inbox on the hour every hour each week, (that Baroness album was HEAVILY hyped by pr firms and p4k just regurgitated what the press release said in their review later on), so it's basically a mess of who's got the biggest combination of $$$ + trendy hype potential.
$$$ + trendy hype potential.
that's what p4k looks for when reviewing artists nowadays.
oh how the turntables.........
do you know anything of noisey? some of their articles are shit, but the documentary stuff with gaahl from gorgoroth and one man metal were excellent and dont seem pr driven cuz black metal is kinda a dead end field
So, there are bands that have ridden the p4k hype wave from being unknown into being popular? thats amazing
what's the best way to get my music out there? do I just email every internet blog saying "Hey check out my stuff!!!!" or will I literally go nowhere without a PR team like you've mentioned here
they honestly didn't see potential or they just had more "important" shit to cover that would garner more clicks. it's strange, but p4k have this weird anti-agenda when it comes to covering music nowadays.
it was even a different reviewer than the one who ended up later reviewing it
plenty are written in advance all the time. they just aren't honest.
they tell pr firms to buy p4k out, so yea lol.
Noisey aren't too bought out and aren't as bad as places like p4k, they even have some pretty good people working for them, their articles are just shit quality most of the time.
the p4k hype wave thing is just a manner of labels funding pr firms and they sit back, relax, and watch all the magic unfold.
it got 8.5
you can do that and smaller blogs and writers will check you out--it's better than nothing.
yeah. what did you want to know?
just labels + pr firms hyping up once again, man. they had ads for Blur's latest album plastered fucking everywhere. it was all just advertisement funds crashing in at a good time.
do the other publications >>61549307 mentioned fucking praise artists like the strokes, arctic monkeys and wolf alice the same way? the way they were treating the strokes in the early 2000's just sounds to over the top to be paid for
Actually, not them, but what's up with NME and their scores? I'm assuming that they're also heavily PR-influenced, I mean just look at the AM (Arctic Monkeys) review; AM actually had a better score than FWN.
Also, what is the most corrupt reviewing site? From the big leagues reviewing sites, of course.
sometimes yeah. this is kinda unrelated but there are PLENTY of musicians that p4k have both praised and covered and spotlighted in interviews that people in the industry know for a fact have raped women. so this just further's the fact that p4k's whole "political activist" agenda they're pushing is just hopping on a trend bandwagon and is meaningless.
the ones who have called them out on their bullshit or just ones who have gotten into fights with them over pr firms. this is why they have never covered Andrew Jackson Jihad.
i don't know for a fact that he did, i just knew by looking at the site just now lol.
>sometimes yeah. this is kinda unrelated but there are PLENTY of musicians that p4k have both praised and covered and spotlighted in interviews that people in the industry know for a fact have raped women
Any chance you know what some of these people are?
>that people in the industry know for a fact have raped women
and i'm not talking about big-name artists either, i'm talking the indie flavor-of-the-month acts and the ones /mu/ talks about and hypes up.
they just have those labels cashing in on those publications for the early 2000s nostalgia in hopes they can get people to go out and buy their new record.
i answered that first bit in my last question.
FADER, Pitchfork, and Stereogum are by far the top 3 worst offenders. stay away from them.
you should start as an indepdnent blogger if you have a passion and make yourself heard and put yourself out there, start applying for writing jobs (even if they're just for local and college magazines, you gotta start somewhere) and be friendly with the big writers on social media
I know you mentioned it's all about pr and money, but why exactly did p4k give My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy a 10? Was it for shits and giggles because they knew people would be pissed off?
>there are PLENTY of musicians that p4k have both praised and covered and spotlighted in interviews that people in the industry know for a fact have raped women. so this just further's the fact that p4k's whole "political activist" agenda they're pushing is just hopping on a trend bandwagon and is meaningless
i think i did at one point but forgot, but they're pretty popular and get covered frequently by many sites and blogs. they're out there.
pretty much everything. i love all genres. i've been getting into Joy Division, Wire, Taj Mahal Travellers, and a bunch of experimental/drone/minimalism stuff lately. :)
>Was it for shits and giggles because they knew people would be pissed off
oh dude, it's NEVER like that. but it's pretty close for what happened then:
that review was heavily funded by pr, not a press release, this was before the whole Conde Nast thing, but was still funded. it was also because p4k knew that MBDTF was going to be a fucking huge, decade-defining release way in advance, so they were going to cash in on something they knew was going to be a huge success.
Does it scare you how influential Pitchfork is in making or breaking artists' careers? I assume the reason why a lot of the huge artists will never speak out against Pitchfork is afraid that it will have an extreme negative impact on their own career.
nope. he does receive press emails but as far as i know (i'm not a fantano expert here) he isn't bought out like p4k--he is nowhere near as big enough or reputable as them to do that.
haha no i'm not. i think he's a dick. as with pretty much everyone else in the industry, too.
2) in private circles, yes, but if they did publicly, and from a huge review site, music would have its own Wikileaks situation going down.
3) he's pretty hated by most writers for big publications. i constantly see many writers on twitter mock him and say his show is only to please 12 year olds. like he's the Pewdiepie of music reviewing or some shit. there a couple i see who still like him but they only do shit for Popmatters and, surprisingly enough, they don't seem to get their own karama of reputable source from bigger critics because of this.
that's just how big music review corporations are nowadays man. it's a business. they gotta make money somehow i guess, but i'm still against it.
and yes, you are right on that front, plus it would be a huge shitstorm and music discussion would probably be pretty wonky for a while following that.
no. i can only go so far with my inside knowledge, and they tend to keep that shit on tight fucking lockdown. which makes no sense, since it's all strung together by pr and labels in the end.
also the Black Star score was already public when I said that. I just looked at the front page before i made that comment.
do you agree with the sentiment that writers have against Fantano? I only ask this because 1) he's gaining influence at a noticeable pace and 2) Chris Ott supports his thing. i'm neutral and very curious
>2) in private circles, yes, but if they did publicly, and from a huge review site, music would have its own Wikileaks situation going down.
This sounds like something that should definitely happen.
oh boy, i knew this one was going to be asked sooner or later. ok, here's what was up with that:
This pr firm, a major one (i won't name names but if you look up popular ones on google you'll bound to find them in the first results), constantly sends p4k press releases and new album advanced copies for coverage. they're a main asset for them, and they're a major role in a lot of p4k's BNM choices.
each year this pr firm assigns p4k with a specific BNM number they can go up to: like a cap limit. they apply this different limit to them each year so they can play this sort of reverse psychology mind game with their readers, where if p4k's followers get used to seeing a certain repeated number that's also sort of high (such as 9.3), they'll get excited when a new 9.3 review comes out and they'll go out and buy that album.
kinda yeah. i can't really stand fantano anymore honestly. i thought he used to have some potential and his channel had a nice thing going on, but now he's just worthless and is piggybacking off of other major sites.
the ones from these publications that I mentioned, as well as people like Adam Harper:
How much integrity did P4k have before being bought by Conde Nast? Like back when Brent DiCresendo or whatever would write those bullshit dialogue reviews.
And what do you think about Tinymixtapes? Are they bought out?
How about Consequence of Sound and the Wire?
To Pimp a Butterfly, New Bermuda, to name a couple.
Pitchfork used to be completely honest in like the first 8 years of starting out. but they slowly became more corrupt. sometime's this will happen lately but it is very fucking rare.
what would it take to have the sheep fans unblinded and have a wikileaks situation for all this stuff? Is it even possible? why hasn't it happened yet if there is such major dissent against this on the insider's circles?
>if p4k's followers get used to seeing a certain repeated number that's also sort of high (such as 9.3), they'll get excited when a new 9.3 review comes out and they'll go out and buy that album.
the small labels don't bribe p4k, but sometimes their pr firms do.
the bigger labels have a role in bribing, but not the smaller ones, as that's the pr firms' job.
the best small labels can do without bribing nowadays is a track review and a future, sometimes you gotta be good friends with a writer.
they probably have some pr firms and label cash supporting them, yeah.
they had way more fucking integrity before Conde Nast. it slowly crept in before they bought p4k but now p4k are done for. it's over. no more honesty. p4k were a great source those first 5 years, completely honest, no bullshit. they used to be fine.
read here about tinymixtapes. they are the LEAST bought out of all of them. do support them:
CoS are definitely bought out and are funded. The Wire are kind 50/50, but they're decent enough.
>if p4k's followers get used to seeing a certain repeated number that's also sort of high (such as 9.3), they'll get excited when a new 9.3 review comes out and they'll go out and buy that album
that's so fucked
>ITT: Tiny Mix Tapes PR team uses anonymous poster to convince /mu/ to jump ship from p4k and come to their side
because even the smaller review sites want to keep shit intact, and if a Wikileaks situation were to go down, they would suffer too, because then no one would know who to trust, even if there were still some safe ones out there.
oh fuck, sorry. i was going to answer that.
he's pretty beloved by everybody. nardwuar is a legend to both journalists and artists alike.
no idea honestly--that's not my field.
this thread is really amazing. somebody should honestly archive all of this shit this dude is saying for the next time p4k is discussed somewhere. hell, even maybe bring this info public without tracing it back to here.
so... this is perhaps why they ignored björk saying the n-word like 6 months ago (i'm a big björk fan, but that was pretty stupid), but starting panning pc music after gfoty made a dumb joke about cultural appropiation, and after lotic (björk's friend, didn't call her out for saying that word, super hyped by p4k) called her out (+ pc music) for that stuff?
i hope this made sense.
yo OP, idk if you're a lit poster or serious writer but you could write a pretty good book with this info. exposing it all. You'll also probably be killed for it tho. Ever thought about it? Or at least making this info known on a larger scale somehow?
yeah dude i understand what you're saying.
yes and no, what an artist says rarely comes down to what the review score is (unless the artist "attacks" a p4k writer, i.e. Sun Kil Moon), it mostly just relies on $$$, pr firms, and trendy hype value.
yeah but there are plenty of potholes. not a book lol, but maybe like a blog post or some shit.
i could do it anonymously but there's also some shit i just want to keep intact for now. i don't know dude. we'll see what happens down the road.
its actually documented that major labels that want repressings of classic rock bands will pay to push indie vinyl back to accomodate the reissues. there are a finite number of pressing machines because no one makes new ones, so that forces indie labels to up the price
I mean hasn't Chris Ott done this to some degree already? He's made a few videos talking about the bullshit of music press but they never gain much traction -- and he's a very interesting guy to listen to (imo).
(not op, by the way)
it's honestly hard to tell. they still cover them dude but they have panned them, if that's what you mean.
i think it's because those artists don't send out good pr firms to p4k, so even if they're hyped up on tumblr, they'll still get a negative review because they don't garner a good enough cash flow.
hey, >>61549972 here. There's no huge conspiracy. There's nothing to be blown open. If you work in the music industry then you understand that this is how music publications work, especially the bigger ones. It's a business, and like any business it needs to generate both press and revenue.
i've only been inside there a couple times (i don't work there), and it's really comfy, has a nice air conditioning vibe going on and you can fucking tell those writers are gushing with money. so much cash everywhere man. they shouldn't be complaining about jack shit.
i was waiting on this couch they had there one time while waiting for a friend and everybody seemed nice. i kinda saw on people's computers what the behind-the-scenes layout looked like for pitchfork writers, even though their desks were a mess lol.
i might go to bed soon, but i might start this thread up again tomorrow and answer more questions. thanks a lot guys.
theres not enough capital investment to make new machines because the revenue from vinyl is still under 10%. There was a bloomberg businessweek article in 2014 among other articles talking about how no one can afford to build new machines or finance them because of the risk of a bubble or just how slowly the ROI is.
not op btw
personally i already knew the majority of what op was saying, although i was surprised to hear the smaller pure sites were afraid of a meltdown; what everyone loves though is that its yet another confirmation of whats happening and the exact mechanism of how its happening.
nothing to frown at
it's like when musicians harp on about the spirit of rock 'n' roll
it's unsurprising, and if you were surprised you don't understand how businesses in the upper tiers of their industry operate
Drake is easily the most obvious artist that helps prove all of this is true. Not that he hasn't put out a good tune every now and then, but the way that every major music review site slurps him is ridiculous when you consider the actual quality of his releases. There's nothing special about Drake at all.
not OP but it's suspicious that Prurient's only release from 2015 (he put out 2 other albums) which got covered was released by Profound Lore, a growing Canadian Metal label. Their albums always end up in P4k review-cycles so it probably isn't a coincidence
>mfw this thread
thank you based op. maybe now all the dimwitted p4k drones will finally understand what everyone else has been saying here for years.
If I ever encounter Ian Cohen at a show in LA i will immediately start beating him until i get arrested
what are your thoughts on this?
reminder, THESE are the people you have to suck up to in order to succeed
there are plenty of bands that are commercially successful but critically derided.
How would one go about personally bribing Pitchfork to get a good review off of them?
Do you always have to bribe Pitchfork through a PR firm?
What would approximately be a medium-sized bribe?
Also, I’m an amateur Musician myself. Any tips on getting my content out onto more people?
> pr firms pr firms pr firms tumblr lol
> artists that very obviously suck and are clearly outside p4k's intended demo just don't have good enough pr firms on their pr firm pocket
this thread fucking sucks, you guys are so fucking gullible I swear to god no wonder you believe in jewish conspiracies
Does Fantano accept bribes?
Explain Payola, its is actually running Pitchfork? Yes.
It's about commerce, iTunes, Beats 1... Business... money interests.
They only hype and praise artists that got them more popular visits-wise
Poptism = more money !?
because its logical and nothing is to unbelievable, Also I noticed prior to this thread that pitchforks reviews had started to become WAY too predictable. I just thought it was Pitchfork's desperate attempt to seem hip and relevant to their fan base. (as he says, to seem trendy). Never thought about pr firms paying for reviews though.
>Tiny Mix Tapes
>and hate p4k with a mighty vengeance,
explain the picture please
>nope. he does receive press emails but as far as i know (i'm not a fantano expert here) he isn't bought out like p4k--
At that time, youtube channels wer runing a constest and we were stealth marketing fantano to make him win, I saw some youtube reviewer comenting on this fantano video (where he call people to vote on himself) asking if MTV called fantano, he said he was asked to go to a interview and if I remmber the guy that posted on fantano video said he said no to mtv
yeah, they can share the same music taste, but TMT hate the writers and all of the pr-driven, paid shit I've been talking about in these two threads. sure they share some music taste but TMT are against pr-driven sites.