In this political season we are reminded of those basic human emotions that make the modern world go ’round:
The last is the worst. And its on glorious display in two darling candidates of the left wing of that large Bird of Prey that is the 1-party oligopoly called U.S.A – Elizabeth Warren & Barack Obama. View all photos
The Tea Club are a young Philadelphia-based progressive rock band that I interviewed in 2010 for my podcast site BandsLikeRush.com. I’ve kept their 2 albums in slow rotation on my iphone ever since.
These guys have dutifully adopted (just as all the music marketing geniuses advise) a stylistic “brand” and elevator pitch description of their sound: “Pastoral post-rock blending into proper prog“. I’m guilty of this too – Ben Sommer’s “Edgy, political prog rock” was concocted by a cold, calculating focus group, not by any music journalist or fan group. But their description is as apt as any I could come up with.
Copyright is dying – that is obvious to everyone. What isn’t obvious to everyone, especially in the music industry, is what a glorious and just outcome this is.
International copyright only came into being in 1891 – very recent considering the long history of music and the arts. And it was publishers – not artists – who convinced governments to foist the system on us. Prior to that, during monarchical times “copyright” was permission granted to writers by the king to print what was politically correct. It was government that introduced the entire concept of “idea ownership” – the basis of copyrights and patents – precisely so it could crush the ideas it didn’t like. Copyright has rotten origins.
Up this week is a new band discovery – Guided By Voices (GBV).
I know I’m about 20 years late to the hipster indie party – this band and its impresario Robert Pollard have been indie gods since the 80s. I remember hearing my vegetarian, feminist girlfriends in college play GBV’s “low-fi” stuff for me in college in the early 90s. Just didn’t grab me – seemed douchey. Well, the good thing about GBV is that they’ve got about 75 albums and 1000+ songs to choose from, so you’re bound to find something enjoyable.
In the publicity blitz for my first album america’d I didn’t limit myself to music blogs. I also reached out to libertarian and anarchist websites and print journals, since my charming message of government/corporatist hatred wasn’t always coming off well with the pure music journalists.
Ron Moore was a Manhattan Libertarian Party member who got back to my request for a feature review. We struck up an acquaintance as well, meeting in person last year to talk business as well (our day jobs are similar). Below is a reprint of the interview that was published in the print edition of the MLP’s magazine Serf City.
I’m constantly late to the party when it comes to musical fashion. There’s just such an astounding mass of good music – especially pop music – that its just very unlikely that the best stuff to listen to is what is being performed and promoted right now.
System of a Down is one of those bands. I got into them in 2008 when I was FAT. I haven’t heard their latest album – released in 2011 – but wouldn’t be surprised if it was great. They seem to have held interest from their early albums to their late ones. Their 2005 double-issue “Mesmerize” has some of my favorite songs on it.
Cool cats like Frank Zappa, but like even more advertising to the world that they like Frank Zappa, because liking him is what makes a cat cool.
I like Zappa – not obsessed though. I don’t like too much humor in my music. My first released album contains much sick and sarcastic humor,
but I still don’t consider my music in the Comedy Rock genre. I need some anger and angst in there. Frank’s music is often too happy and goofy for me.
But today’s song, though tongue-in-cheek, is hard-hitting punk/prog Zappa at his best. Its why I love Zappa.
Training to be a composer exposes you to music from a wide historical and stylistic range. It gives you a higher-level view than most people. That’s why “genre” to me means popular, classical, folk, religious – and every major civilization’s flavors of those high-level categories.