Ah yes, the accolades continue! As we grow tired of our long journey down the "best-of" lists drawn up by various publications, websites, pundits, public broadcasters, and fourth-grade classes, twin blogs Stereogum
and its sister video site Videogum
decided to go democratic with their own list of award winners. Titled "The Gummy Awards," voting is open now and ends 12/2. YOU decide '09, guys. But do we, really? Let's compare this situation to something, Thanksgiving style! Gobbles!
Look, I'm all for Democracy. I think voting works, especially in scenarios involving who gets the last slice of pizza or Survivor
. But unfortunately, all these best of lists are just a bunch of journalistic speculation. The problem with music, and food, and opinions, are that they are all subjective. No one will unanimously agree that Animal Collective
deserves a Nobel Peace Prize before they fix the economy, so why bother? Because we're all sheeple? We have critics for a reason, but are they free to form their opinions, or merely aggregators of our collective thoughts, personified and expressed? Can't it be both?
The answer, I believe, dwells in the dark dirty caves of food ratings. On this, the day before the day before the day before Thanksgiving, let us discuss how food is rated in this country. On the one hand, we have the prestigious Michelin guide, which rates restaurants anonymously and secretly with secret agents in the field. Then we have the Zagat guide, which takes customer polls and real people input to rate restaurants. Which one works better? Neither. Each has its flaws; Zagat can't accurately deconstruct the complexities of multiple course restaurants with Foie Gras and Truffles as base ingredients in everything, including cocktails. But who eats at those things more than once a decade? If you want Chinese in the neighborhood, you best be checking Zagat.
Of course the food debacle isn't totally analogous. There is no anonymous organization that rates music and doesn't reveal its staff. It is easy to remain anonymous while listening to a record in your bedroom while jumping from one of your twin beds to the other, because your parents stuffed you in the guest room when your sister was born (huh?), but let's get real. Just like Zagat and Michelin serve their purpose, so do best-of lists, even the user generated ones. Just remember, at the end of the day, you should make up your own minds, America! If you want a Big Mac (Lady GaGa), the guys who eat at Le Dirty Projectors with silver spoons won't judge you (they will). But don't normal people eat both? Both Zagat and Michelin are well respected for what they do, so lets all hold hands.
In other news, we're excited to announce we are NOT doing a best of the decade list. Instead, we will just take a hard look at the top picks of other people and judge them. Because really, all that matters is JUDGMENT DAY. Or maybe Rise Of The Machines
. But definitely not Salvation
. Nice try, Bale. Stick to the Batman voice. - joe puglisi
Vote on The Gummys at here if you're a socialist. If not, stick around for our top 25 albums of the year, as rated by the experts at Baeble. Or both!