Something I see a lot as a critic is the accusation that we analyze music instead of feeling it, but I don’t imagine any writer thinks that’s fair: The analysis gets spun out of the feelings if needed.

Tom Ewing’s latest Poptimist column is as delightful as usual.

That is such an absurd criticism to make. To indulge in a little Music Critic Apologism, if anything what critics do is articulate the feeling. This is why almost zero music reviews confront the specific instruments used, or the individual chords played; Most reviews are more concerned with the sum rather than the parts, and generally approach it from the perspective of a listener (which is every critic not out for blood) rather than attempting to reverse-engineer. I don’t think we’re trying to pick apart the seams as often as we try to describe what we appreciate about how it’s sewn together.

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