Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

J.K. Rowling reviewed the Violent Femmes’ debut album on Tumblr

(Photo: Getty Images, Rob Stothard)

There’s a Tumblr page called Ruth And Martin’s Album Club that’s built on a simple concept: Each week, they get a guest to pick a “critically acclaimed album they’ve never listened to” and then offer their opinion of the album after listening to it “at least three times.” This week, Ruth And Martin’s Album Club managed to land J.K. Rowling, the extremely famous Harry Potter author who seems to spend most of her time these days owning people on Twitter. Rowling was asked to review the Violent Femmes’ 1983 self-titled debut, explaining beforehand that her current favorite albums are Revolver by The Beatles, Broken English by Marianne Faithful, and Hozier’s self-titled album.

As for the Violent Femmes, Rowling thinks she missed them the first time around because she was dating a guy at the time who sounds like a bit of an elitist hipster. She says NME was his “bible,” and he was vehemently against any music that was “commercial or popular.” Now that she’s listened to them, Rowling’s a fan—though it did take some work. She explains that she put the record on for the first time and instantly liked the catchy guitar riff that opens “Blister In The Sun,” but when frontman Gordon Gano’s vocals kicked in, she said, “scratch everything, I hate this.” Eventually, though, Rowling came around on Gano, realizing that his slightly weird voice simply sounded too much like the “nasal, whiny, and brash” bands that her NME-worshipping boyfriend liked. By her third listen, Rowling says that she realized she “loved the album.”


The whole piece is interesting, both for Rowling’s thoughts and a little prologue story about the Violent Femmes, and there’s a whole archive of other guests reviewing albums they’ve never heard of.

[via Pitchfork]

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