Staff Top 10
Top Ten Musical Signifiers (Almost) Guaranteed To Make Me Fellate A Record Regardless Of Its Quality

By: Nick Southall

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Posted 03/16/2007 - 07:45:06 AM by smezzer:
 brilliant article Nick, my favourite Top 10 for a long while. i'm with you on a lot of the points, particularly the love for trumpets, vague jazz pretentions, and dynamic productions. plus i have a few of my own, more embarrassing, signifiers which at least make not great records quite listenable, funk bass and martial drums amongst them. also, thanks for giving me a checklist of things to include on my first lp. B+ here i come
Posted 03/16/2007 - 07:52:13 AM by NickSouthall:
 Oooooh, martial drums! Good call!
Posted 03/16/2007 - 08:32:27 AM by d75cub:
 Haha you're funny. BTW it's Brundisium not Brundidium
Posted 03/16/2007 - 09:56:23 AM by J_R_K_:
 let's hope nme doesn't make new dub indie the next big thing or your head will explode.
Posted 03/16/2007 - 12:05:53 PM by dr_breaks:
 funnily enough, this seems like a list of things that actually make me hate albums. 'interesting instruments' = artists who cant play basic (real) instuments properly and require some sort of crdibility. Dub died quite a few years ago, surely? and jazz and pop never, repeat, never work well together (except in life in a glass house). Horns sound, well, silly and 'dynamic range' is something lazy journalists say that is meaningless. Nick, I implore you, look through these lazy signifiers and listen to the songs as wholes of pieces and then perhaps you'll stop liking Embrace!
Posted 03/16/2007 - 12:36:05 PM by jhitting:
 That song "Louisiana" by The Walkmen would be dead in the water without the brass at the end.
Posted 03/16/2007 - 03:50:58 PM by raskolnikov:
 In the future, perhaps the ludicrous phrase "pointillist guitar" should be replaced by "guitar with lots of reverb on it" or "guitar heavily processed by delay". The songs that Mr. Southall selects to illustrate his very dubious list are pretty much all horrible. If these songs make you fellate records, I'm afraid that you're pretty easy, Mr. Southall....and you must have a lot of records with dried saliva on them.
Posted 03/16/2007 - 04:45:59 PM by ZakAce:
 I play trumpet, so I fully support more trumpet being used. Sure, I'm biased, but c'mon! We need more trumpet in rock. I also agree with the 'good dynamics' thing. For example, I got Wolfmother's debut, and for the first few listens, I liked it. Then after a while, I realised that the blatant overcompression was really putting me off. It's a shame, though, there's some good songs there.
Posted 03/17/2007 - 12:14:43 PM by karlkafka:
 i liked this article. raskolnikov is pathetic.
Posted 03/27/2007 - 09:57:40 AM by hey_mippy:
 Or, you know, maybe he's not a guitar tech. I know music theory, but I still couldn't pin down what it is about a record that makes me go wow...which is why I like N.Southall's pieces. I think for me it's that kind of staccato-speed singing you get on some records: Fill Me In, and Walking Down Madison being two examples.
Posted 05/26/2007 - 10:19:03 AM by brrrrr:
 point 8!!! agreed See "my body is a cage" arcade fire, neon bible!!! " body is a....insert FUCKOFF organ and FUCKOFF violins!!!!"
Posted 05/26/2007 - 10:23:18 AM by brrrrr:
 point 4: Trumpets...See Springbok Nude girls. album titled: Afterlifesatisfaction!!! SUPERB Also point 3: see Scott matthews song called Elusive...very interesting, yet brief, used of static
Posted 09/08/2007 - 09:41:02 AM by richardob:
 What's more concise? 'guitar with lots of reverb on it' or 'pointillist guitar'? Southall explained his point perfectly clearly, I understood the metaphor and it's much more interesting to read as a phrase.
Posted 09/13/2007 - 10:23:35 AM by raskolnikov:
 Let's call it "pretentious guitar" instead then, shall we?