Quotes by Rob Sheffield
- 'American Horror' goes for a very specific kind of Seventies suburban downer ambience - 'Flowers in the Attic' paperbacks, Black Sabbath album covers and late-night flicks like 'Let's Scare Jessica to Death.' It even has 'Go Ask Alice'-era urban legends.
- 'American Horror' is the debasement of the suburban family, the way a lonely kid would have imagined it in the Seventies.
- Ah, the bond between English boys and California girls. For those of us who aren't either, it's a bond that fascinates and mystifies. So much of the world's favorite music comes out of that relationship.
- At an incredibly divisive point in pop history, Donna Summer managed to create an undeniable across-the-board experience of mass pleasure - after 'Bad Girls,' nobody ever tried claiming disco sucked again. It set the template for what Michael Jackson would do a few months later with 'Off The Wall.'
- Big Star invented a vision of bohemian rock & roll cool that had nothing to do with New York, Los Angeles or London, which made them completely out of style in the 1970s, but also made them an inspiration to generations of weird Southern kids.
- In their heyday, the Pet Shop Boys were the Interpol of the Eighties, dressing up to sing really weird pop songs about lust and loneliness in the big city. They're low-pro now, not retro-worshipped in the manner of Depeche Mode, New Order, or The Cure, but you can hear the reason why - these guys are too sad.
- It was R.E.M. who showed other Eighties bands how to get away with ignoring the rules - they lived in some weird town nobody never heard of, they didn't play power chords, they probably couldn't even spell 'spandex.' All they had was songs.
- It's kind of amazing how popular 'Grey's Anatomy' is. What other show can boast such an annoyingly sincere cast of doctors, sniveling through such perfunctory love triangles?
- Like many other touchstones of twenty-first-century pop culture, 'The Sopranos' was hatched in the late Nineties, predicting a future that never arrived. It was designed for a decade that would be just like the Nineties, except more so, in an America that enjoyed seeing itself as smarter and braver and freer than ever before.
- Most of an award-show host's job is showing up and keeping a cool head and soldiering through it, whether it's the Oscars or the Hallmark Channel's 'Hero Dog Awards.'
- Movies for adults sucked in the 1980s, and music for adults sucked even worse whether we're talking about Kathleen Turner flicks or Sting albums, the decade's non-teen culture has no staying power at all.
- Sending Paris Hilton to jail for being the most loathed celeprosy lesion in the history of the species seems like a happening idea at first - forty-five days at Century Regional Detention Center is so the new thirty days at Promises Malibu! But it sets a dangerous precedent to jail celebs just because someone hates them.
- Thanks to the greatest invention of recent years, the MP3-playing alarm clock, I can now choose the song that wakes me up in the morning.
- Watching the evening news in 2011 is a strange time-travel experience. 'The CBS Evening News,' 'ABC World News' and 'NBC Nightly News' haven't changed their style over the decades, still going for that old-fashioned mix of voice-of-authority pomp and feel-good fluff. The difference is that people aren't watching.
- When I started out as a music journalist, at the end of the 1980s, it was generally assumed that we were living through the lamest music era the world would ever see. But those were also the years when hip-hop exploded, beatbox disco soared, indie rock took off, and new wave invented a language of teen angst.
- You can't beat the beehive for glam punkette attitude.