Thursday, February 21, 2008

Asia Redux (Redux) (Redux)

As far as I'm concerned, this blog is about disagreeing sometimes with my fellow DVers. So...it's time to do that again. :)

To My Fellow Reviewers (You Know Who You Are):

I acknowledge, first off, that I am often in the minority among my DV friends. I don't get the Grateful Dead, I dislike Bob Dylan, I kinda like Barry Manilow -- I am, needless to say, the very soul of uncool sometimes. After many years of struggling with this, I have learned to deal with it.

But I'm about to take it another step. I kind of like Asia, at least their first and second CDs, Asia and Alpha. I cheerily admit everything after that is crap, except for "Days Like These" off their Then And Now CD. Slick as the Exxon Valdez spill? Check. Corporate, soulless, mechanical? Yep, all that's somewhat true. Live albums recorded in more locations than "CSI" spinoffs in a shallow attempt to cash in on the same songs over and over again? I agree. But damn it, there are occasional moments when "Heat Of The Moment" or "Don't Cry" just hits the spot. I don't own the CDs, I don't need to own the CDs, but they're...acceptably mediocre with a chance of partly fair.

My fellow writers seem to believe they're the musical equivalent of Times Beach, Missouri. And now they've decided to give the new CD a bad rep even before it's been released by being a bit...er...what's the term I'm looking for here...ah, yes, snarky *grin*... about who's actually in the band.

There's a serious point to this; in my judgment, critics perpetuate their opinions of artists without paying attention to what they might be doing at the time. Yes, Asia's new CD, Phoenix, will probably mostly suck. But if it doesn't...are we going to be sufficiently open-minded to admit it doesn't mostly suck?

1 comment:

Jason Warburg said...

In answer to your question, "are we going to be sufficiently open-minded to admit it doesn't mostly suck?" -- yes. I was actually pleasantly surprised by the fact that the recent live Asia DVD chronicling last year's reunion tour did not, in fact, suck. It was, in fact, quite mediocre with a couple of reasonably memorable moments. And I said so, admitting my surprise.

That having been said, there are previews -- 90 second snippets -- of four songs from the new Phoenix album available on Asia's Web site. Guess what? They pretty much suck... ;-)