Find Me On:
Couldn’t you also say that 2015 is the year post-punk came back based on the strength of Viet Cong and Sleater-Kinney? Or that it’s a psych renaissance based on Mark Ronson bringing Tame Impala into the pop sphere and Panda Bear’s great new record? I like both of these records but given how many albums are still coming out and how early the year is, this is silly (but fun).
Yeah not godawful, but this lineup is pretty bad, especially compared to last year’s or to Gov Ball or Coachella.
This is fantastic, best thing he’s done since “The Shock of the Lightning.”
I’m glad Chris acknowledged that alt rock is still a growth market for radio, seems like every other think piece on Stereogum talks about rock’s impending doom and death. I really like what Stuart Berman wrote about rock in his review of the Royal Blood album for Pitchfork:
In the year 2014, the only thing more tired and predictable than mainstream rock is the perpetual reports of its demise. But then, the gatekeepers of tradition need us to believe rock is dying in order to keep selling us a new resurrection narrative, like any consumer product in the mature phase of its life cycle and in need of a good marketing hook. But the audience for rock music never disappeared, it merely pluralized. Classic-rock radio may still play Black Sabbath alongside the Eagles and the Police, but the modern-day descendants of those bands are now funneled through discrete radio formats that serve different demographics. When you consider the combined festival-filling fanbases for metal, indie, and new country (and whatever derisive invented subgenre you’d apply to bands like Magic!), there’s still a healthy demand for songs played on plugged-in guitars and backed by bass, drums, and (budget permitting) pyro. Rock may no longer be the center of popular culture, but it still occupies vast amounts of space around it. When purists lament its supposed death, what they’re really lamenting is not so much the disappearance of guitar-strapping bands as a dearth of ones we can all believe in.
Just sad, really.
The album isn’t bad and is even pretty good in places, but most of the songs don’t really stick with me after repeated listens and feel a little formless. Hats off to them experimenting more, but I’m not sure how compelling that leaves the songwriting.
The AV Club took some time to listen to the record and not have such a knee jerk response. http://www.avclub.com/review/u2s-digital-surprise-has-some-value-despite-its-pr-209161
I love the “This Week in Pop” column and Stereogum’s increasingly wide focus on a lot of different genres, but I don’t know how this piece is anything except SEO clickbait. “And because she’s filthy rich, she went down to Brazil to celebrate the final in style, getting drunk with the players and documenting it on social media. Let’s see what the good girl gone bad was up to all weekend….” Just looks like something from TMZ.
The Verve/Richard Ashcroft did it first and better.