At what point do you trust someone’s opinion? With a film critic, for example, you read the reviews and see if they compare with your own view of the film – and to a lesser extent if the review entertains you regardless of the shared artistic view.
Similar the opinions of friends and colleagues. You take a sample of their views on things, weigh them up against the evidence and learn to trust opinions or don’t.
But what about bias? You might not trust a friend’s ‘review’ of their daughter’s sporting prowess or their son’s art.
So far so fucking dull, Philip. What is the point of this? Well the person whose opinion I can’t rely on is MINE.
How good is the new Stone Roses song All For One? I am not sure I can trust my opinion as I so desperately want it to be good.
After their first hiatus, which felt like an eternity (six fucking years – that felt like forever) I loved Love Spreads from the moment it kicked on the first lesson. I still love Love Spreads, as I love The Second Coming – which some don’t rate. All For Love feels somewhere between The Stone Roses and The Second Coming with the simplicities and vocal of the former and the axe of the latter.
I have previous with this (inaccurately predicting how good something is based on how good I hope it will be – not weak paragraphs about songs). Every Oasis album released after Be Here Now, which I still stand by as a great album, was always something I thought was brilliant. And then slowly realised was just OK. Or – in the case of Standing on The Shoulder of Giants – fucking shit.
Ditto I can’t really trust many other people’s opinions on All For One, because I think they are either as inherently blind to possible mediocrity as I am or similarly disabled to hearing what could be a good song.
One of the immediate reactions I read was from a friend who described it as sub-Beady Eye. I’d heard it once at the time. Now, several listens on, I think that’s a bit harsh (I mean it sounds like a harsh description of even a weak Beady Eye song). Said friend certainly didn’t want it to be a bad song…however, he does have a track (no pun intended) record of being disappointed by the work of most bands post-debut output (which of course if a fair point for a fucking lot of mediocre indie bands).
My own immediate view of the song was more framed about what I wasn’t feeling. I wasn’t feeling blown away. I didn’t immediately feel amazed. On the other hand I wasn’t disappointed that it was shockingly bad.
I liked the vocal. I thought the lyrics were a bit simple, which can be a very good thing – often resting on top of an amazing backing track (which this wasn’t/isn’t). Essentially, I could live with it and hoped that second, third, fourth etc listens would embed it in my ear.
And a few listens on I did like it more. More importantly *grasping at straws klaxon* I thought how good it would feel listening to this live (twice – yeah, I know told you there was a bias here) this summer. Still, when I exchanged opinions with others there was generally a sentiment of hope that there would be more new songs (i.e. an album) and they wouldn’t have come back with the best tunes.
And a YouTube comment alerted me to the riff having a touch of The Fall’s Squid Lord about it. Not that I give a fuck about originality if something is good.
I still don’t know how I genuinely feel, how long does one give it? Will I really know in 2 months? A year?
Note: I occasionally mis-remember title of the Bryan Adams/Sting/Rod Stewart song All for Love (how good is the banter in the first minute of the video? Rod calling Sting ‘String’!!! awesome) as All for One. True story.