For a long time I was against the idea of applying some kind of rating system to my reviews, simply because for so many people it negates the need to actually read the review that I've written. It destroys the point of the review in favor of a simple picture to show people what I think of the thing I'm reviewing, instead of actually reading the details of what I like and don't like.
However, I'm not sure that's the case, and I think that to appeal to a slightly larger audience, I should at least try it out.
Behold! The same rating system everyone else uses! Stars! Let me break it down for you!
✰✰✰✰✰: Classic. We're going to remember this one. Ex. A Thousand Suns, Zaireeka.
✰✰✰✰1/2: Brilliant. Minor issues, hard to point out problems, but a fantastic package altogether. Ex. The Marshall Mathers LP, American Idiot.
✰✰✰✰: Excellent. Could have been a little better, but still wonderful. Ex. Embryonic, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars.
✰✰✰1/2: Good. Room for improvement in most cases. Ex. Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends, Medúlla.
✰✰✰: Respectable. This is the average, the par, neither good nor bad. Ex. Most Cake albums, Dirt.
✰✰1/2: Meh. Boring, not enough going for it. Doolittle, I'm With You.
✰✰: Not very good. This is the threshold for albums that have more bad qualities than good. Ex. From Under the Cork Tree, Our Love to Admire.
✰1/2: Bad. Little to admire and more to dislike. Ex. Dookie, ...And Justice For All.
✰: Awful. So bad it's almost funny. Ex. Goo, The Velvet Underground (sorry guys, but I just can't listen to it).
1/2: Repugnant. So bad it is funny. Ex. Home (Deep Blue Something) The Second Stage Turbine Blade.
ZERO STARS: Odoriferous. Only once has something reached this level. Ex. The Dissent of Man.
There's a really simple way to transform the ratings to 100 points: just add 10 points for every space beyond zero and you've got yourself a Metacritic-compatible rating system. For example, Fleet Foxes' self-titled debut would get 70 points, or ✰✰✰1/2, because they have a really fresh sound, but they could have handled more of their songs a little better.
And there you have it.