Pitchfork music critics are now making regular appearances on ABC’s World News Webcast. Good for them! But I have a hard time imagining a more awkward media crossover, both in substance and in style, than a collaboration between the trend-savvy, ultra-hip Pitchfork and the button-down old-media cluelessness of big three network news. And the results are just as off-key as one might expect, as in this segment on Bon Iver, which features a slick and totally out of place Ron Burgundyesque anchorman introducing a record-review segment in which the soft-spoken Amanda Petrusich finds herself in the strange (for a Pitchfork writer) situation of having to actually explain, in boringly precise layman’s terms, what auto-tune is. How undignified! This from a writer whose written review of the album featured the following passage:
“Babys” features a prickly, unrelenting keyboard riff and a curiously zoological refrain (“Summer comes, to multiply!”) but “Woods” is the most intriguing cut here: For armchairists prone to detached psychoanalysis, For Emma’s legend might suggest that Vernon has a penchant for escapism, and there’s no easier way to eschew the crags of your own voice than by piling on studio effects.
(For the record, I agree with Petrusich about the glories of Blood Bank — it’s a beautiful, if imperfect, little EP.)