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Jon Dale

Jon Dale writes for UNCUT, Red Bull Music Academy and FACT. He teaches across sociology, media and communication, and experimental writing. He is currently completing a book on UK DIY music from the late '70s/early '80s, as well as working on a book on the diary films of Jonas Mekas.

Jon Dale reviews ‘Jazz: The Australian accent’ by John Shand

September 2009, no. 314 01 September 2009
On paper, jazz critic John Shand’s Jazz: The Australian Accent is a welcome intervention, one of the first books to take Australian jazz seriously. Shand’s prose is well paced and easy to read, if slightly glib. There is little obfuscation in his method, which is infinitely preferable to the pretensions of many jazz critics who fail to translate jazz into prose. Shand’s descriptions of music ... (read more)

Jon Dale reviews 'The 10 Rules of Rock and Roll' by Robert Forster

February 2010, no. 318 01 February 2010
Why do otherwise sane human beings decide to become music critics? It’s often to jump on the PR treadmill of free passes to gigs and free records for review. There’s the writer who wants to be closer to his idol, the careerist who sees it as one more step to editorial power, or the music junkie who’s compelled to make the leap from mute fanaticism to the written word. ... (read more)

Jon Dale reviews 'Heat 21: Without A Paddle' edited by Ivor Indyk

February 2010, no. 318 01 February 2010
As with most literary journals, Heat 21 is a curate’s egg. Notably, Without A Paddle shines when in analytical-critical, essayistic mode. The poetry and fiction are rather more prosaic, with a few exceptions: Ken Bolton in fine form; Michael Hofmann’s beautifully spare poetry. Hofmann’s poem prefaces an extended interview with the poet and German-English translator; his responses are humble, ... (read more)

Jon Dale reviews 'Another Little Piece of My Heart' by Richard Goldstein

November 2015, no. 376 30 October 2015
Richard Goldstein, one of the first rock critics, has always occupied a weird place in the history of music criticism. His memoir could have sat uneasily as an attempt to justify and reconcile his position, but instead, Goldstein taps into a strangely confessional vein, tracing his history from the Bronx to the Ballroom, finding his home at the Village Voice, with honesty and wit. The honesty is ... (read more)