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harbringer
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Oct 06, 2009 9:12 am
Posts: 385
PostPosted: Tue Apr 06, 2010 9:19 pm 
 

How long does it take you to write a review, and does anyone have any special rituals or methods when they write?

I'll usually be listening to an album and decide I love/hate it so much I should write a review, or for whatever other reason it strikes me. I'll usually get most of it done through 1 listen of the album, and try to shorten it and make it sound better and see if there's anything I forgot to mention while I listen again. I'd love to say I burn a satanic candle in my dungeon of torture while I sip on blood from a chalice or something while I write a review, but it's more casual than that :)
And most of mines get written in the wee hours of the night.

I read about people spending weeks on a review, so I'm interested in how long it takes and what the process entails for the people here.
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Pfuntner
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Jul 19, 2006 9:33 pm
Posts: 1096
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Tue Apr 06, 2010 10:47 pm 
 

If I know what I want to say it usually takes about an hour. If not, well there's this Unexpect review that's been on my back burner since December 2009.
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OzzyApu
Metal freak

Joined: Fri Oct 13, 2006 12:11 am
Posts: 9897
Location: Seattle, United States
PostPosted: Tue Apr 06, 2010 10:58 pm 
 

For a lot of short releases I just go in and listen to it. Let it sink in if necessary, but nothing that'll take me more than a week at the max. For albums that I dig I like to get a feel for them first - some more deserving of others. For instance, the last batch of reviews I did included Cult of Luna's The Beyond and Edge of Sanity's The Spectral Sorrows. Both albums have a hefty amount of songs with tons of depth, but they're pretty different offerings that require the same process from me.

I own physical copies of both albums, so I can listen to them in the car or while on the go or at home. Each experience brings different perspectives to the table, and since I really like both albums I don't mind sitting through them and getting the full experience with each method. I hear new melodies, catch on to things I overlooked, and have changing (or consistent) opinions on other known truths. I tend to hint at what songs are my favorites without making a track by track list hidden in paragraphs - this way I focus on the overall sound of the album rather than certain songs (unique ones I don't mind mentioning). If I want to add humor in there, then I could, but I'm starting not to do that these days because I don't have the patience for it when reading (noticed this in a lot of older reviews of mine).

It isn't everything that I do, and this particular process / processes focuses on positive reviews rather than negative ones, but that's the general experience. On that note, it took years for me to develop my writing style and process - looking back at my Amazon reviews way back when I started out in 2005, I gotta say that I've come a long way.

I tend not to write reviews for releases I've downloaded / purchased recently. In regard to certain releases by certain artists (Zarach 'Baal' Tharagh, etc.), I'm content with reviewing the very same hour at the minimum (maybe even less).
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caspian
Wanderer of the Wastes

Joined: Tue Dec 07, 2004 11:29 pm
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Location: Australia
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 12:37 am 
 

5 minutes to 30 minutes. I think there's one or two reviews that took me maybe an hour, but that's the exception.
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Malacoda
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:25 pm
Posts: 666
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 12:40 am 
 

Once I start writing, anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour or more, but I usually have to spend lots of time getting my thoughts together in my head. I don't do one-listen reviews.

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EntilZha
Retired

Joined: Fri Apr 25, 2008 9:22 pm
Posts: 2222
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 12:43 am 
 

34.788 minutes.
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iamntbatman
Chaos Breed

Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2009 5:55 am
Posts: 7986
Location: Innsmouth
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 1:05 am 
 

I'd say it varies between maybe half an hour and an hour for me. It pretty much depends on how long I've had ideas about how I want to describe the music, really. If I've had thoughts brewing for quite a while the reviews go quicker.
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SharpAndSlender
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Mar 09, 2010 3:49 am
Posts: 2260
Location: Bradenton, Florida
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 2:40 am 
 

Most of the time like 20 minutes. Sometimes weeks. Most of the time a few listens of the record. Sometimes a hundred.
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ScourgeOfDeath
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2009 3:35 am
Posts: 1083
Location: India
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 7:56 am 
 

The Devil Doll review took me about 25 min while the Rush one ate up about 6 months (sadly it still sucks, I ll edit it when I have time).

The others took around 1 hour each.
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The_CrY
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Sat Nov 07, 2009 4:18 pm
Posts: 19
Location: Netherlands
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 11:00 am 
 

Once I start writing it may vary between 20 and 40 minutes, depending on how quick the words are formed in my head and on how much there is to say. Single releases are often dealt with in about 10 minutes. I once tried to review an album I bought the day before, but that ended up as very poor quality and contradiction with my opinion a week later, so I want have really listened closely before I start a review. However, I can review a live album after one listen, because I won't be describing musical details from those (unless there are non-studio-album tracks).

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Zoldaten_ov_Zatan
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2010 6:04 pm
Posts: 665
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 8:29 pm 
 

About 12 days on average.
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Oblarg
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2009 2:59 pm
Posts: 2379
Location: The second sea
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 10:37 pm 
 

About an hour. My reviews probably could benefit from a bit more time and planning (they end up a bit plodding and stretched if I start running out of things to say).

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Charlo
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Sep 10, 2006 7:05 am
Posts: 153
Location: United States
PostPosted: Mon Apr 12, 2010 1:52 pm 
 

I spend about half an hour to an hour, but I spend a lot more time thinking about it before I write. I don't think I'd be able to sit down with an album that I'd only heard a few times before and write a good review for it. I guess the review starts getting "written" in my head about two weeks before I actually type it out.

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Whackooyzero
Metalhead

Joined: Fri May 30, 2008 10:57 pm
Posts: 833
Location: United States
PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2010 12:50 am 
 

Only takes about 30-35 minutes although there are a few exeptions(my Millenium review took a bit longer, as did the Damien Steele one) I listen to the album before and point out things I want to mention and go for it. This ends up being my downfall sometimes though because I always end up editing them non stop.
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mbx1
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Mon Mar 01, 2010 6:56 am
Posts: 7
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Thu Apr 15, 2010 3:50 pm 
 

it depend with how long we can understand the material what we want to write a review about it...

for example, if we want to write review about CD album, we must listening it more than 1 time...until we can take conclusion about the album.

so that is my opinion.
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glyndwr_2002
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Apr 01, 2003 9:52 am
Posts: 519
PostPosted: Thu Apr 15, 2010 3:53 pm 
 

Whackooyzero wrote:
Only takes about 30-35 minutes although there are a few exeptions(my Millenium review took a bit longer, as did the Damien Steele one) I listen to the album before and point out things I want to mention and go for it. This ends up being my downfall sometimes though because I always end up editing them non stop.


I haven't done many, but my first draft is written while the album is playing--It kind of starts with a track-by-track impression of how I'm feeling, what I'm hearing etc. Then it gets revised into something semi-cohesive. Then I'll spin the thing again, and tweak.

But... really I've only done a couple so far.

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DBettino
Metalhead

Joined: Sat Apr 26, 2003 10:43 pm
Posts: 2151
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 1:38 am 
 

1 day. But that's because I listen, jot some notes, listen again, write an introductory paragraph, listen again, do a song-by-song, and by then I usually come up with a conclusion paragraph. I could work on three or four simultaneously using the same process and do that many in a day, but that would make it an all-day affair. But, if I'm working on it off and on, then each review takes me about a day.

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Lane
Metal newbie

Joined: Sat Nov 09, 2002 11:54 am
Posts: 126
Location: Finland
PostPosted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 6:07 am 
 

I try to listen to release I'm about to review at least 10 times. Then I start writing up notes. Then it is time to build a review. It might take several days, but I really want to give in-depth review for any release.
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Empyreal
The Final Frontier

Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 6:58 pm
Posts: 19365
Location: Where the dead rule the night
PostPosted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 12:42 pm 
 

It ranges from anywhere from a half hour to a few weeks, depending on how inspired I am to write in a professional and witty way and how much I am confident that I know the material well enough to review it. I wrote my recent Taraxacum review in about twenty minutes, but I currently have a review for Entombed's Clandestine that I just can't seem to finish...got to try harder.
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Visionary
Veteran

Joined: Sun Jul 24, 2005 3:57 pm
Posts: 2635
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 2:25 pm 
 

I usually find myself writing a paragraph then rewording it then finding myself uninspired and go do something else or find something else to listen to and review. I have tons of reviews I wrote a paragraph or two for and then never went back to it.

Other time I find myself writing through it all at once and it takes me about 15minutes or so for my short ones and over an hour for the long ones.

I'm pretty sure I have ADD though growing up in England I was never diagnosed as they don't believe in doping up children on Psych meds like the US does.
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Leperous
Metal newbie

Joined: Mon Mar 22, 2010 9:37 pm
Posts: 98
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2010 8:06 pm 
 

Visionary wrote:
I'm pretty sure I have ADD though growing up in England I was never diagnosed as they don't believe in doping up children on Psych meds like the US does.


Hahaha that sucks for you.

I've been working on a Mr Bungle review for a few months, just got back to working on it again after forgetting about it. I would have a lot more reviews if I used my time in my creative writing class to work on them rather than do nothing. I don't get albums for the purpose of reviewing them though so I have almost no reviews.

It takes me around an hour to write a review, depending on what the release is, how long it is, how much I like it and my opinion about it. Albums I praise generally take the same amount of time as albums I despise.
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zeingard
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Aug 01, 2007 7:49 pm
Posts: 546
PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2010 9:28 pm 
 

Pretty much the same as Empyreal; anywhere from half an hour to a couple of months. Sometimes the mood just strikes me or I just come up with the perfect idea and act on it as quickly as possible to get it all out.

Otherwise I usually come up with a line or paragraph but don't know how the rest of the review should start or continue. At that point it sits in a notepad file on my computer until I go back to it or come across it while bored on a random day.

I always at least make sure to have a few notes or points per song, even if I'm intimately familiar with the album. It's good to have something to read over and use as a reference, plus to remind me of minute details I might otherwise forget.

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Twisted_Psychology
Veteran

Joined: Sat May 16, 2009 8:22 pm
Posts: 3006
Location: United States
PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2010 9:50 pm 
 

I can spend a few weeks brooding on what to say for a review, but writing everything down can usually only take an hour or so.
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Radagast
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Dec 01, 2004 6:41 pm
Posts: 349
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2010 9:14 am 
 

Because I write to a schedule (currently 2 or 3 reviews per month for metalcdratings.com) I'm sort of forced into a routine. I'm usually not familiar with the album in question before deciding to review it as we focus on new releases, so I end up gathering the albums, and listen to them extensively over the course of the month. I then set aside a couple of nights at the end of the month to get all my jumbled thoughts into a word document and then rearrange them in an orderly fashion.

I think this causes my reviews to end up quite formulaic and I'm often not overly happy with them, but I at least try to get the main important points of the album down. MCDR as a site is a more of 'buyer's guide' rather than a place for lengthy dissertations.

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MetalNorge_Asgeir
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2009 4:11 am
Posts: 15
Location: Norway
PostPosted: Fri Apr 30, 2010 4:05 pm 
 

We got a "policy" to review everything so usually I listen through three times while writing the last round. It depends on the material, lol

Sometimes it sucks and only will get 20 mins in the player... .-p
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Axel_Sikth
Metalhead

Joined: Wed May 07, 2008 9:30 am
Posts: 910
Location: Hong Kong
PostPosted: Sun May 02, 2010 12:08 pm 
 

Writing for Extreminal means I do 2 or 3 reviews a week. I'll spend most of the weekdays listening to the music and making notes here and there. I'll usually piece together the review on the weekends. Sometimes though, some albums inspire me enough to write a review after one or two listens. It usually takes multiple listens to find out how I feel about the album though, and not just assess it in a "Oh, these guys have some death metal as well as grind influence. Their drum tone really sucks but they have sick riffs" level. Unfortunately, between schoolwork, studying, and the rest of my real life, I rarely get to really delve into a release as much as I would like and as a result, my reviews tend to get formulaic.

As for Chainsaw Justice, there is a lot more freedom (my own blog after all). When people send stuff over, I try to get to reviewing it as soon as possible, but not without letting their material sink in and make an impression on me. With stuff I review of my own accord, I tend to get stuck at the "letting material sink in" step and never get to writing a review.

I'm working on it. :P
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