The Strokes

There’s an emerging line of thought that frames the Strokes as America’s Oasis: beloved for their first two watershed records, forgiven for uneven subsequent efforts. Recorded output aside, the analogy holds water at least in terms of their media coverage: The “Are they getting along or aren’t they?” tagline is amusing, or exhausting, depending on your tolerance for press conjecture, decontextualized quotes, and your desire to read into the body language and banter of a famously apathetic (onstage) band. The last two days have not disappointed in that regard: Yes, the Strokes appear to be in the studio here and there, working out new ideas for an Angles followup. That’s great news. Angles was alright and it’ll be nice to hear the band make a record that they’re not creating via email attachment or whatever. According to Billboard, Al Hammond, Jr. says “everything’s been really good for a while,” and that any of the new stuff they are making will not be performed until recorded. Great! According to NME, Julian delayed the band’s first attempts at post-Angles studio/writing time because Valensi was fixing (finally) to make a solo album. But the songs he wanted to use were Strokes songs, and so Nick wasn’t allowed to do it for legal reasons, or … something? It’s a pretty strange situation and the quote is sort of unclear, but it is fitting that not even the Strokes can give clear quotes on why the are or are not getting along at any given moment.

Regardless, the FACTS are these: The Strokes have had a writing session, in the studio, and as of today’s Billboard article they are getting along. And those are good facts.

Comments (12)
  1. woohoo! love the strokes.

  2. Writing in the studio is the last thing The Strokes need to be doing. Get a rehearsal space, write some songs, play some shows, tweak the songs, then record.

  3. ‘forgiven for uneven subsequent efforts.’ Haha, their last two albums are my faves since the ‘uneveness’ is what has saved them from regurgitating the same sounds as those first two albums. Their sophomore album was just ‘This Is It’ part 2 & not very interesting imo. I love it when musicians change things up & try new things. I wasn’t that interested in them until ‘First Impressions. . . ‘ came out.

  4. i dont know anyone who doesnt think first impressions is at least as good as room on fire

  5. I never understood the “Room on Fire sounds too much like Is This It” complaint. First of all, no, it doesn’t. ‘Room on Fire’ has a slicker, icier, less-garage feel to it.

    The first two records admittedly sound sort of similar, but who gives a shit? No one complains that ‘Revolver’ sounds too much like ‘Rubber Soul’ or that ‘Doggystyle’ sounds too much like ‘The Chronic’. How ’bout ‘The Godfather, Part 2′?

    What’s better than 11 great songs? 11 more great songs to enjoy.

    • My beef with Room On Fire has always been that awful mix; the buried vocals in particular. Example: 12:51. It’s a great tune, but the guitar-synth being way louder than the lead vocal makes me crazy, especially considering how low the vocal is. That record was a better mix away from being a great sophomore album.

      • I have never understood the “sounds too much like” complaint either. That being said, I am in total agreement that the mix could have been a lot better. Reptilia is an absolutely brilliant song, but it took me like 5 listens before I even realized that I liked it, and the same goes for the album as a whole.

        So either the production is a little inaccessible, or I have a tin ear. Or both.

        • I think their first two records complement each other nicely. Room On Fire has some change-ups but doesn’t throw away the identity they carved out on Is This It. I also don’t get the reviewers that didn’t like Angles, everyone I know who’s head it thinks that album is great, and so do I.

  6. Really? I don’t know anyone that likes Angles. I guess it’s who you know.

  7. ddogdunit  |   Posted on May 2nd, 2011 0

    c’mon, everyone can at least agree that LPs 1 & 2 are classics, and everything else has been lackluster. FIOE was the first major disappointment, and angles just continued in that vein.

    i actually enjoyed jules’ solo album far more than angles or FIOE though, he legitimately sounds like he’s having a good time without the constraints of the pressure to make great albums with the strokes, even if he does go too far in some silly directions as a result.

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