Roderick on year-end lists

John Roderick on his disdain for year-end top ten lists:

Compressing your emotional response to art into a 1-to-10 scale is robbing yourself of the appreciation of nuance. Albums are complete works of art: flawed, human, beautiful. Even the worst album I listened to last year couldn’t be properly described in four long paragraphs. Reducing an album’s worth of songs to a “five star” rating and a pithy sentence is painfully dumb.

On people who rely on top-ten lists for discovery:

I wonder–did they listen thoroughly to every record they bought last year? Did they listen to them all the way through, even? The people making records are still spending months and years on them, while the people buying them are munching through them like corn chips. Slow down.

Much broader application than just music here—there is much we encounter in life that requires time, patience, and perhaps effort to fully experience, appreciate, and learn from.