It’s been a pretty quiet day at the Idolator flophouse. (I’m staying in a lovely guest room. Maura is a great hostess–she even made me blueberry pancakes! A++!) I’d been hoping that my guest spot on this site would line up with something crazy, or eventful, or weird–y’know, something easy to write about, if we’re being very honest. And here we are, at the end of the day, and it’s here: an honest-to-goodness Pitchfork nontroversy! More specifically, it’s the first round of what could be the critic-on-critic showdown of the season!
Earlier this afternoon, Chicago Reader critic Jessica Hopper called out Pitchfork‘s Jessica Suarez on her charmingly titled blog tinyluckygenius aka the Unicorn’s tear:
I’m really no longer in the business of being upset by what Pitchfork does and doesn’t do–but– there’s some emails flyin’ fast an furious on back channels discussing the flip self-sexism of Jessica Suarez’s Tegan and Sara review. “Tegan and Sara should no longer be mistaken for tampon rock, a comparison only fair because of the company they kept.” (The company they keep? Vaginas? Cos their lesbians? is it a joke and ps. who is tampon rocking? Is that post-Lilith fair? Or just music by people who get their periods? ?!?!?!?!?)
Ahhhh! It’s exciting, right? Can’t you just feel a 1,000-post thread on I Love Music brewing? It’s like when it’s really, really humid out and you can almost smell the rain coming!
I definitely disagree with the gist of Suarez’s review–The Con is a reasonably strong pop album, and I don’t think it’s nearly as mawkish as she makes it out to be. In the other corner, Hopper’s “self-sexism” charge seems to go a bit too far, but then again, she’s not exactly a stranger to that sort of thing. On one hand, the whole “tampon rock” thing does seem weirdly misogynistic and unfair to the band, but on the other, it doesn’t seem all that angry in context. If anything, it’s just kinda snotty and dismissive in a way that isn’t overly invested in why “tampon rock” would be an obviously bad thing.
It’s hard to say whether or not Suarez will choose to step into the ring, but with or without inter-Jessica warfare, everyone here at the flophouse expects to see at least five or six blog posts about this by Monday morning, especially since it’s supposed to rain a lot in New York this weekend.