Friday 26 September 2014

Rock's Carcass

"But pop and rock belongs at the end of the 20th century, in a structured, ordered world that has now fallen apart."

Paul Morley (via Retromania)

Whilst I believe this is true for rock I'm not convinced that this is the case for pop. Pop has had a pretty good run since say Britney's Baby,One More Time. Rock though that's another story entirely. Just the notion of a rock band seems antiquated doesn't it? It seems absolutely absurd that anyone would be hauling this old carcass around in 2014. Moribund ideas are still being thrown at us as if it's supposed to be authentic man. Surely we're all over and done with rock in the new millennium.

Ah...but herein lies a paradox. Our thinking might be ahead of our actions ie. our listening habits. I made a list some time ago of my top 50 albums of the 00s. There are 19 or so rock records. Grinderman, Eddy Current Suppression Ring, Rowland S Howard, The Drones, Yawning Man, Dungen, The Flaming Lips, Ooga Boogas, Boredoms, Deerhoof all of whom you would say were ROCK. Then there's the in between like Sun Araw, Fabulous Diamonds, Broadcast, Ducktails, Gary War, Lamborghini Crystal, Gang Gang Dance and Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti. I mean are that lot rock? In very broad terms you would have to say they were, wouldn't you? So actually rock hasn't fully finished for me in the new millennium despite thinking it's a rotting corpse. It has definitely dropped off in the 10s though with only Swans, Dave Graney & The Mistly, Ooga Boogas and Beaches appearing in my end of year lists. But hang on, then there's Human Teenager, Rangers, Metronomy and Peaking Lights! Are they rock bands? Sure they're not of the White Stripes variety but they have some roots in rock don't they?...or shhh.... maybe Post-Rock. I even thought I was done with psychedelia after Dungen's 2004 classic Ta Det Lugnt but what are The Focus Group's Elektrik Karousel and Belbury Poly's The Belbury Tales if not late in the epoch psych classics? Sure Belbury Poly aren't sitting in tour buses snorting coke off groupies breasts, at least I don't think they are (I kinda wish they were now). I can't think of one rock LP of 2014 that I'd rate although I haven't listened to Scott Walker & Sun O)))'s record yet (I'm psyching myself up for that).

Jeezy feat. Future - No Tears 
A Top Tune From 2014 

So rock's sun is finally setting but that doesn't mean, like Paul Morley, that I'm about to get into ye olde classical music. Current rap, ratchet, trap, bop, r&b/rap interzones, electronic music, experimental and pop still hold sway with me in 2014. As well as old stuff from soundtracks, library music, reissues/compilations (Soundway, Trunk, Finders Keepers et al.),Belgian, Dutch, British and German 90s hardcore (the dance music variety), 90s Memphis Rap to Bowie etc. I think the furthest I've gone back in time, music wise, is like the 30s and 40s with the blues and early electronics. I like the ye olde electronic music but I think that's my cut off point as far as classical music goes. I don't feel the need to go back centuries in time for my music needs. As a youngster I recall thinking by the time I was 40 I'd be a jazz connoisseur and right into my classical music phase but I don't think it's gonna happen. That's for other people. The Person I didn't become. In fact I think my tastes are becoming less sophisticated as the years go on. Rock'n'Roll was about instant gratification and mayhem and that's the way I still like it.

*Ha....I do own a copy of Switched On Bach which I rather like.

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