Website names Lou Reed most overrated lyricist

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Flavorwire just released a list of their top ten most overrated rock lyricists, and surprisingly, the voice of jaded decadence himself, Lou Reed, was at the top of their list. These types of lists are subjective of course, and mainly serve as argument-starters. Here's Flavorwire's rationale:

"Now, don't get us wrong here. We are huge Lou Reed fans, and no one is denying that he has written some of the best rock 'n' roll lyrics ever. But it does seem like he loses interest at times — whether it's comically bad clangers like "Just like poison in a vial / Hey, she was often very vile" (from "Caroline Says II"), or generally lackluster songs like "My Red Joysticks," Reed has been responsible for a surprising number of pretty awful lyrics. When he's on form, he's up with the very, very best. But we think he's dropped enough stinkers over the years to not entirely merit his reputation as a consistently great lyricist."

The other part of Lutallica would probably disagree. The others named in the list, in descending order, are Paul Banks of Interpol, Serj Tankian of System of a Down, Bernard Sumner of New Order, Matt Bellamy of Muse, Conor Oberst (Bright Eyes), Jim Morrison, Robert Plant, Chris Martin of Coldplay, and (sacrilege!) Bob Dylan. Obviously a very rock-centric list. But we don't want to be hurting Taylor Swift's feelings. She's so nice.

The first thing that occurs to me about this list, is that it's no knock on the lyricists, but rather on the listeners who made them out to be better than they actually are. Reed can, of course, interpret this as being a result of fanatical overpraise. The same with Dylan. I don't think Dylan should ever win a Nobel Prize, but why not give him props for his colorful and ambiguous metaphors?

And when it comes to System of a Down, who really thinks about the lyrics anyway? If you name a song "Chop Suey!," you probably don't take yourself too seriously. (Armenian genocide aside.) You can say Morrison sinned against his talent, but the dude was crazy well-read, and did release a couple books of poetry. Robert Plant was probably punished for liking J.R.R. Tolkien too much, and Martin could be on the list simply by virtue of being married to the not-universally-popular-by-any-means Gwyneth Paltrow. (At least he's not married to Rachael Ray.)