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it can be disheartening and it’s certainly tough to watch your friends work so hard and struggle to get heard while others seem to fall into success. but after a while it just seems like the way the world works, ya know? i dont know how old everyone is around here, but i’ve been involved in underground music scenes for over 15 years. it isn’t fair…there’s no justice…and of course you have the right to get upset…but is it really worth the energy? i’m not sure about the payola type stuff. i dont really think its that insidious. as wide spread as we all feel like this “indie rock” thing is…it’s still a relatively small community. and people look to trusted voices “so and so likes a lot of the same music as me…so i’ll listen when so and so says this is good”. until those voices become the status quo…then we must rebel and blame them for everything. p4k has turned me on to some great shit…they’ve also recommended some stuff that i found absolutely boring/annoying…no harm. no foul. and because the community is so small i think a lot of the “reporting” gets redundant. it’s not unlike mainstream news media….a story breaks everyone runs it into the ground…people get angry that so much attention is devoted to it….it dies down…the next story breaks…
i dunno. i just really think it’s all harmless and we’ve been conditioned by the all too easy, all too anonymous blogosphere to over-react to things that really dont matter. in a year no one will care about wavves. and hopefully our friends will still be workin their asses off making good music!
i’m not so sure though that the indie rock game is rigged any more than anything else. that’s life. sure i also have plenty of talented friends who haven’t rocketed to fame overnight (myself included). some of them slog it out on the road 200+ days/year…some just keep making music, playing local shows and recording songs. one band’s “stardom” really isn’t affecting other musicians chances. people rocket to fame because they’re in the right place at the right time. it doesn’t mean it’s the best music…it just caught the attention of whatever mood was in the air.but i think it’s problematic to blame an artist for getting shot through the hype grinder…regardless of how you feel about someone’s music…they’re making the music they believe in and have just as much right to try and find success as anyone. i dont agree that the only thing we can do is point out “injustices” and complain…what we can do is not support artists that we dont believe in. freaking out because someone doesn’t agree with you is kind of pointless and silly. stuff like this doesn’t ever seem fair…but it can’t change. there will always be more musicians than there’s room in the marketplace to support…some brilliant work will always fall through the cracks….i think it’s safe to argue that today’s digital media network allows far more musicians to be heard than at any other time in history. your 20 friends have a much better chance of reaching an audience than they would’ve 10 years ago. i just think whining about it is a waste of time…and it come across as petty jealousy….make music, play it, tour. buy records you love, go to shows…that’s all you can REALLY do.
isn’t this the same sort of backlash that vampire weekend got about a year ago? i mean, it’s pretty typical. anytime someone gets big praise it’s only a matter of time before the “indie” crowd turns on them…it’s all part of the tired cooler than thou posturing that defines any underground culture. once something is popular/accepted by an authoritative voice (in this case p4k) then people have to be cooler than that and discredit the work. wavves gets blasted for being “no talent, lo-fi, simplistic or whatever” VW got slaughtered for being “pretentious, white-bred, too clean, soulless” it doesn’t really matter. good musicianship or not there’s always gonna be a reason to hate whoever gets popular. why does everyone feel so threatened by other people’s popularity? does it really hurt you in any way? maybe if you’re a musician who’s not getting the attention you feel you deserve…but that’s just jealousy. someone else’s popularity isn’t stealing your audience. that’s a cheap excuse. i can’t even remember the big deal backlash before VW, but there was one…and there will be another one in about 9 months….then 9 months after that….it’s just music people. listen to what you like, make the music you want to make, see the shows you want to see….it’s all pretty harmless really.
too much too soon. this kid is young. has very little live experience under his belt then bullets to indie fame over some bedroom goof-off tapes. i actually like the records and when i saw them a while back in san diego…i was totally surprised that the show kinda ruled. everything sounded great. maybe it was the hometown crowd, although i’m pretty sure that most of the kids there were there to scoff at the new indie darling. anyway. whatever, he does seem like a spoiled brat and he certainly needed more time to mature/learn how to play live before headlining a fucking festival.
remember when this band used to actually write interesting songs? now they’re caked in tired 70′s tropes, parliament funkadelic, bowie, alice cooper… they all did this shit 35 years ago, but managed to have music that could outshine the bombast of the live show …i have no problem with flashy shows and cheeky productions…but the songwriting seems to have been lost somewhere along the way.