[OPINION] Can you really review an album in one day?
Jay-Z recently said:
"I think reviews have lost a lot of their importance now because of the internet,” Jay explained. “Everyone is experiencing things at the same time. You can write a review like the guy from USA Today, tomorrow. Ya’ll both can write the review at the same time…That’s why the critic became important in the music space because they got the music first. They would get the music two months early because the magazine had a long lead time. They get it. They sit with it. They review it. They send it out a month ahead of time. You reading it. You looking like ‘Oh, this album’s gonna be dope.’ You don’t have the music. So, you’re reading reviews for a month. Right now, the music comes out like this. People are writing a review in a day. First of all, you can’t listen to an album and rate it in a day. It’s just impossible…And when I see that I’m like ‘Oh, so this is all just bullshit."
Music reviews these days have a detrimental effect on those who aren't familiar with said artist/genre. Seriously. A lot of people, instead of going through the hassle of listening to a whole album, will look up an album review to let the "professionals" guide their opinions instead of developing their own. I mean, reading an album review is just so convenient, especially when something is really hyped and everyone seems to be in on it, but you don't really want to invest too much time into.
And that was definitely the case for Magna Carta. Of course, a huge amount of people did listen to it and still justifiably hated it, but media coverage definitely paints the album's credibility and has led a lot of people to talk shit or say its amazing. a lot of reviewers basically said jay-z put out a shit album, and then a huge wave of people started saying the album was shit. like a DAY after the release. and it's really hard to comprehend an entire album within a day...which brings me to my next point.
A lot of established publications and blogs are exploiting the album review. every website wants a lot of traffic and a lot of views, comments, likes, retweets, etc. and these days, the fastest upload of a wanted content (like the review of the MCHG- it was getting a lot of press, hype, expectations before its release for obvious reasons) will get the most views, most traffic, while the others trail behind it. So these music critics have to get in their reviews fairly quickly to not fall behind...
This really has the potential to hinder the critic's utmost ability to really review and critique the album. A LOT of reviews were published on July 4 or 5 (LA Times, USA Today, NYT, Billboard, MTV.) on the day of release or a single day after it. And admittedly a lot of these reviews are really well written, But I can't help but think that it's all about who uploads/publishes it first and gets the most views, etc.