The Anomaly Diary

How I Make Album Reviews

Here’s how I do it.

We are technically coming to the end of the second week of January 2019 and there hasn’t been any notable album release so far. Well, as far as my news feed is concerned. To be honest, I miss doing them reviews. If this keeps up I will start reviewing classic albums.

Anyway, while I wait for new album releases, I would love to show you how I do my album reviews. Luckily, there have been hardly any criticisms about my reviews. As a matter of fact, people actually feel the same way about the albums like me. It should be noted, however, that not everyone shares the same opinions so I do expect huge opposition in the near future because people, right?

Despite me starting my reviewing back in August 2018, I’ve come to enjoy it for two reasons: I get exposed to new music every other week and I add new songs to my playlists. What’s interesting is how I thought my reviews were inferior to other guys until I realized we share the same opinions most of the time. This means anyone can be a critic; there really are no rules to it, only some tools that you need.

Here are the items that I use to make my reviews.

Music Streaming Service

We live in the era of streaming everything from movies to even video games. Music streaming is definitely the most efficient way of getting new music than buying every record out there. Unless you have that kind of money. I mean, iTunes still sells albums to date for those who want to.

When it comes to picking the right service for you, it has come down to convenience. For example, I live in Kenya. Apple Music is my preferred option because Spotify isn’t available in my region. I could use it through VPN connections but that would incur an extra cost given that using the free version of Spotify kind of sucks. Plus, Apple charges me $5 per month here compared to $11 Spotify charges for premium every month.

Let me remind you that it is all about convenience here. In as much as Apple Music is accessible here, I do miss listening to Spotify’s playlists.

Good Headphones

Not earphones. Headphones. Here is the thing, earphones don’t offer the full listening experience that most songs offer. This was evident when I bought my JBL T450 Bluetooth headphones and the JBL T110 in ear earphones. While the earphones do pack extra bass, the headphones provide a better listening experience. Also, they are wireless and last 12 hours. You should try them out. They cost $50-60 on Amazon.

I forgot to mention something; don’t be cheap when it comes to purchasing the audio accessory. More money spent means better quality. Except for the Airpods. Their sound quality is just fine. Not worth the buy in this case. Flossing, sure but not reviews.

Notebook

The most obvious thing to have. Just make small notes while listening to the albums. It helps especially if the record has 20+ tracks.

Evaluation of scores

This is probably the easiest part of the whole process. Scores are given on a scale of 1-10, 1 being terrible and 10 being a masterpiece. My scores are given based on whether I enjoyed the album or not. I also consider the replay value of the album. Putting those two factors into consideration usually gives me a comprehensive conclusion.

One thing to note is that I normally repeat the records three times because I have to determine the replay value. This is no problem when the album was great the first time. It becomes a nightmare when you listen to an album like Culture II. Jeez, what a drag that was. Poor replay value has made me release my reviews late before but I am working on it.

And that is how I make my reviews. If you are an audiophile like me, you will realize how indie music is way better than mainstream music. However, the latter gets more attention than the former because of music label connections and promotions. It takes money to make money.

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