Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Uncharacteristic Negative Musings

Some time ago, I penned a long and pointless stream of negativity entitled 'Who Do You Loathe?', in which I examined a number of much loved and respected bands that, for various reasons, I just don't get. In the end I decided not to publish the piece, as, by and large, I prefer to promote positivity. Ultimately, even if a particular band or artist is not to my personal taste, I can usually appreciate the qualities in what they do and understand their popularity.

Having said all that, Muse......what's that all about? I listened with interest to their recent hour-long chat with Steve Lamacq on 6Music, in support of their new LP, 'Drones'. They are without question a pleasant, funny, engaging, interesting, eloquent and thoroughly decent bunch of chaps, who I wish no ill towards whatsoever. It's just that when it comes to their music, I struggle to find a single solitary redeeming feature.

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On a more positve note, here's a band who are currently pushing all the right buttons here at Swede Towers. Young Knives played a Marc Riley session last week, which I'm very glad I caught, as I was unaware of their recent 'Something Awful EP' up until that point. The title song from the EP deals in part with the death of singer Henry Dartnall's Grandfather from Alzheimer's disease in 2010 and the dark accompanying clip is '..an imagining of a deteriorating mind, like an old VHS tape that's been recorded on too many times'.



14 comments:

Singing Bear said...

Snap! I heard some of that same interview and was thinking exactly the same thing - well, along the lines of, 'Who can spend any of their precious minutes listening to this crap?' I was surprised how genuinely enthusiastic Lamacq seemed. He's either very professional or has poorer taste than I thought. Muse should actually be banned. 'Who do you loathe?' - fine idea but I know what you mean about trying to be positive - you know it's an idea I could have run with! Oh, the list.

Young Knives - good one.

TheRobster said...

For what it's worth, I find Muse intriguing in a "how ludicrous can they possibly get" kind of way. I don't dislike them, but I'm not nearly as excited by them as I used to be. They really, really want to be Queen. Lamacq, I think, is genuinely keen on the band. He's a huge fan of Catfish and the Bottlemen too, so his taste has to be called into question.

As for the Young Knives - bloody brill. I saw them perform their latest album in full when it came out. A rather intense show, but they still managed to keep the audience smiling throughout. MrsRobster is a big fan, so they've definitelky got something going for them.

Anonymous said...

I cannot make head or tail of Muse. Bafflingly popular for a band who make such ridiculous music.
Swiss Adam

Erik Bartlam said...

More lazers.

george said...

I have a Muse album. I do, though, like The Young Knives, that is a splendid noise. Searched for them on bandcamp but came up with nothing, though

Scott said...

Thought about doing a similiar post a while back, but decided against it for the same reasons. If I was ever to go ahead with said post Muse would certainly feature. One of my mates runs a club night in Glasgow every 3 months where everyone that goes each picks 3 tracks and that makes up the playlist for the night. You can pick whatever you like, with the only stipulation being that you cannot pick anything from Muse or Coldplay.

Brian said...

I get trying to stay positive. To get around that, I had this idea for a series called Musical Confessions where we would all come clean about a band we like... despite the fact we know we probably shouldn't. To balance it out, for every one of those somewhat positive confessions we would also point out a band we just don't get. I don't mean someone we loathe, necessarily, but a head-scratcher. Something you're supposed to like, some of us probably like, but it's just not happening for you. Perhaps that would keep us from getting too negative. Then again, a "THEY SUCK" choice might be therapeutic too.

The Swede said...

Singing Bear - He lets his professionalism slip sometimes. Let's just say that if Lammo put together a 'Who Do You Loathe?' series, Prince would featured in it for sure.

TheRobster - When Lamacq gets his hooks into a band he's extremely loyal. He still likes Coldplay and Stereophonics fer goodness sakes!

Swiss Adam - Not just me then.

Erik. - Dunno about that!

George. They have a Soundcloud page.

Scott - Sounds like a good club. A pub in Norwich used to run a Seven Sevens evening once a week. Anyone was welcome to turn up with seven 7" singles from their collection and play a brief set.

Brian - Sounds like you mean Guilty Pleasures and Singing Bear would have it that there is no such thing as a musical guilty pleasure. He's right of course. Some things just make us squirm a little more than others. I ditched the 'Who Do You Loathe?' thing in the end because the last thing I'd want to do is put down a band that someone taking the time to read my blog really likes. If, however, we all have a Bloggers Anonymous outing to a pub one day, I'll be happy to join in the thrust and parry of a rigorous debate over a few beers - and name some names!

Anonymous said...

A trip to the pub sounds fun. Central location, Travel lodge nearby, a blogging summit.
Swiss Adam

charity chic said...

And take in a Muse concert Adam?

Dirk said...

Count me in for that summit, will you? And as far as the list is concerned, I would VERY much like to see it, apparently my ethics are not as high as yours! Perhaps 'the other blog' would be a good place to feature it, I mean, no-one reads it anyway and it's supposed to be dead as well ...

The Swede said...

A blogging summit, perfect - and the American contingent can be with us via Skype! But who'll select the tunes?
Dirk, Perhaps I should start another blog under a different name as a negative counterpoint to this one?

Dirk said...

Swede, in fact such a blog already exists, "run" by Swiss Adam, Drew, Simon and me: http://thisblogcontinuestodecline.blogspot.de/

Feel free to contribute something/your list whenever you want to!!

C said...

I would never own or play a Muse album in a million years, BUT.... seeing, simply witnessing them perform Supremacy at the opening of Brits 2013 was so over the top, so theatrical, and somehow so classily overblown that I loved it just for what it was - you know how you can just be drawn into something when you don't expect to be at all. (I wouldn't ever listen to the song on its own!) If you haven't seen it, maybe you could bear to allow yourself a few minutes to watch it on youtube and hang on in there for Matt Bellamy's perfect statement flourish as he strikes his final chord. I kept thinking when I was watching it, if they put one tiny step wrong, boy is that going to fuck it up completely. Of course they didn't... consummate professionals if nothing else!
As for talking negatively... I know exactly what you mean because there is so much slagging off and negativity in much of what we read online BUT (another "but"!) I also find it therapeutic, very amusing and somehow rather satisfying to read others letting rip... it's only normal... if you're thinking it privately then it's still valid...and if it makes a good, entertaining read who cares whether we agree or not, the pleasure is in the participation. I'd love to read the occasional loathe list, full of passion and ridicule! Especially if the reasons given are really quite unjustifiable ;-)

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