Editor’s Note: Prefix Magazine will not run the submitted review of Prefuse 73’s Extinguished due to difficulties with the assigned staff writer. The Prefix editorial staff sincerely apologizes for any inconvenience. In order to shed some light on the situation, Prefix presents the phone transcript of the conversation between Publisher Dave Park, Editor-in-Chief Brandon Wall, and Staff Writer Mike Krolak during which the decision to withhold the review was made.
Brandon: Mike, we have a little problem with your review of Extinguished.
Mike: Really? What’s the problem?
Dave: It sucks.
Brandon: Yeah, it kinda sucks.
Mike: Hmm. Can you be more specific?
Dave: It isn’t really clear at any point in the review what you actually think about the album, your descriptions of the album are less than vague, and you neglected to give it a number rating.
Mike: I see.
Brandon: The press release says that Scott Herren "insists [it’s] his favorite Prefuse work."
Dave: If he cares enough to drop a record only three months after his last work, especially one as good as One Word Extinguisher, I think we owe him a few coherent paragraphs.
Brandon: And I count maybe four complete sentences.
Mike: That was supposed to be a, uh, metaphor. Extinguished runs through 23 tracks in 39 minutes, right? A third of the tracks are under a minute long, and only four of them last more than two minutes. Four complete songs, four complete sentences, get it?
Brandon: Yes, but that doesn’t mean I can [expletive deleted] read it.
Dave: When back-to-back sentences read, " ‘For Some But Not For Me’ = lite rock remix. Sounds like collaboration with Alec Empire on ‘Tel Aviv’s Gravel Toothbrush,’ " you’re bound to lose some readers. It’s accurate, but it sounds like you’re just typing out notes. Nobody wants to read that.
Brandon: Since Extinguished is a collection of outtakes and alternate versions of tracks from Prefuse’s One Word Extinguisher, I’m surprised you didn’t just cut and paste most of the text from your review of that one.
Dave: It probably wouldn’t have worked, since the two differ substantially, but at least that would have been creative.
Brandon: Perhaps even readable. I’d like to go back to the point about "four complete songs." Does a song have to be three minutes long to be complete?
Dave: "Dubs That Don’t Match" is one of the dopest tracks released this year, and despite it being two minutes long, it unfolds perfectly into a collage of piano, vocal samples, and a bit of glitch. Doesn’t that qualify as a song?
Mike: [garbled noise]
Brandon: You didn’t even mention the amazing opener that captures the range of sound and emotion from One Word Extinguisher in a tight, four-and-a-half minute package.
Mike: Ahh, that’s what it was. I knew it sounded familiar.
Brandon: I’d venture so far as to say that Extinguished has more melody and more soul than One Word Extinguisher.
Mike: Yeah, but didn’t you find it kind of frustrating at times? Take "Sao Paolo Arkansas," for example. Just as it feels like it’s building some steam, it gets chopped off and we’re interrupted by three seconds of a bootleg grunge sample, and then it’s on to the next song.
Dave: I’d agree. And I’d say that it’s that lack of cohesion that keeps it from being as strong as One Word Extinguisher. But all you said was "Lots of melody. Short though."
Brandon: No verbs there.
Dave: At least you could have called it…I don’t know, an equally stunning but more exasperating companion piece to One Word Extinguisher.
Mike: Ooh, I like that. Maybe I can use that in the next draft.
Brandon: There isn’t going to be a next draft because we’re not going to run the review.
Mike: But this is an important record.
Dave: He may finally have a point there. We really should run something about it, although I’m pretty [expletive deleted] tired of hearing the word "extinguish."
Brandon: Well, if we run anything, we’re giving it 4 out of 5.
Mike: I’d agree with that.