Everybody’s A Wenner: The “Rolling Stone” Review-Section Revue

By: Brian Raftery / September 29, 2006

Welcome back to another edition of “Everybody’s A Wenner,” in which we look at Rolling Stone‘s 750-year-old record-reviews section, and try to prove the theory that every album earns a three-star rating–no matter how offensively bad that album may be. For a slightly more convoluted explanation, check out our first installment.

The latest issue of RS is one of the strangest in months, thanks to Rob Sheffield’s two-star finger-wag toward Eddie & the Cruisers’ the Killers’ Sam’s Town. Once you get past that rare moment of critical sanity, the triple-threat verdicts are everywhere: You get a three-star, Beyonce! You get a three-star, Primal Scream! As always, there’s nary a discouraging word to be found in the happy little world of RS: Everything’s great–even The Dutchess (three-and-half stars, which means it’s somehow just as good as the Hold Steady album).

Here’s the break-down:
Issue #: 1010
Total number of stars: 66 (including 8 three-star reviews)
Total number of reviews (excluding reissues): 21
Average grade (number of stars / number of reviews): 3.1, or 3 stars

Oh, and as for the Jack Nicholson piece? Apparently he’s still a bad boy, he and Scorsese had a crazy time on the set of the movie, and Lara Flynn Boyle is “beautiful, but a handful.” We didn’t actually read the story, but we guarantee that’s all in there.