First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic by Jessica Hopper

First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic

by Jessica Hopper Author

Jessica Hopper's music criticism has earned her a reputation as a firebrand, a keen observer, and a fearless critic not just of music but the culture around it. With this volume, spanning from her punk fanzine roots to her landmark piece on R. Kelly's past, The First Collection leaves no doubt why The New York Times has called Hopper's work "influential."

Not merely a selection of two decades of Hopper's most engaging, thoughtful, and humorous writing, this book documents the last 20 years of American music-making, and the shifting landscape of music consumption. The book journeys through the truths of Riot Grrrl's empowering insurgence, decamps to Gary, Indiana on the eve of Michael Jackson's death, explodes the grunge-era mythologies of Nirvana and Courtney Love, and examines emo's rise.

Through this vast range of album reviews, essays, columns, interviews, and oral histories, Hopper chronicles what it is to be truly, truly obsessed with music. The pieces in The First Collection send us digging deep into our record collections, searching to re-hear what we loved and hated, makes us reconsider the art, trash, and politics Hopper illuminates, and helps us to make sense of what matters to us most.

Comments & Reviews


I KNOW bikes are political because when me, or other odd balls mention traveling by bike versus the typical car (which was, historically, an American Dream component forced onto the general American family by advertisement) people get pissed off, or think we're crazy, wrong and everything else to the left of the road. I'd love to have this book to show my daily surrounding beings that I'm not from another planet with this idea.