Is there an age when people lose the need to listen to the urgent?

From one New Yorker rock critic to another: Sasha Frere-Jones fisks Nick Hornby. One: I adore Nick Hornby's books, and have autographed versions of High Fidelity and How to be Good. Two: having said that, his New York Times article (not available online anymore, but you get the text from SFJ's deconstruction) was the epitome of wetness. Somehow the ironic remove of High Fidelity - 30-something man who does nothing but listen to music writes about 30-something man who does nothing but listen to music, and both author and narrator can afford to be wry about their situation, and the author knows that at some level the situation is somewhat pathetic - got lost along the way, and Hornby became a non-ironic champion of that wistful faux-nostalgic musical point of view. Three: Hornby still retains the ability to write about how pop can make one feel - I love Christgau, but sometimes you need a refuge from the obscurantist - the problem is in the pop he chooses to get moved by...


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