Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Where next?

What's amazing is that there is still so much musical territory left to cover, whether in "indie" or elsewhere.

When you look at the world of music around you and realize the hole you've dug yourself into, be it bad emo music you justify listening to merely because it's "post-hardcore" (so you say...) or post-punk or avant-noise or whatever, it gets scary to look around at what you've never listened to.

For me, that "what I've never listened to" is a huge sea of music. Off the top of my head, I want to get into early '90s math rock... '80s hardcore... mainstream and classic rock... freak folk... the plethora of varieties of metal that don't sound much different from each other... jazz, free jazz, jazz fusion. And I'm certain that this statement applies to everyone. We are all tied up in our musical cubbyholes and to expand into uncertain territory is difficult. We like what we know we like - even if we like what we like because of a fluke or risk into uncertain territory. I got into Modest Mouse back in 2001 by taking a risk, and The Moon and Antarctica changed how I listen to music.

I got into Sublime over the summer and spent quite a few humid nights in Pittsburgh listening through 40 Oz. to Freedom. I always had a disdain for Sublime... perhaps it was those NK stoners (we are... NK! We are... NK!) who overglorified the band's status to deities - in summation, they felt overhyped in comparison to the singles you might hear on the modern rock radio. But I gave them a listen with open ears.

When talking about Sublime, it's important to note that Sublime are simply the ska equivalent of Pavement - especially on that early record, where they use style in only the way that a postmodernist might. And that's what surprised me about them - they were doing nothing that Pavement hadn't. Of course, there's no way that you're going to blast Wowee Zowee at a party (unless it's an art opening... that's a different story), but both bands share the same energy. The same irreverence.

Oh... and Pitchfork just said today that Radiohead's set to play Charlotte. Too bad it might not happen until I'm off to college.

1 comment:

D said...

Explore your relationship to various sounds. There is so much to listen to-style-style style. Can music be about style? Can a band make music about style. I believe the Arcade Fire play with this a bit-and of course The White Stripes!