Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Musicians that Owe Me an Apology (a rock snob rant... sorry)

I first posted this list in late January. I removed it because I was in discussions regarding a ministry position and concerned that the organization would not understand my political incorrection if they looked at my blog. I no longer care, so I am bringing this post back. I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed writing it...

As I have been putting together this Album list, I have realized there are many sacred cows out there; musicians that cannot be spoken of truthfully, for fear of offending somebody.

However, many of these sacred cows owe listeners an apology (especially rock snobs). In fact, there are 20 Artists that owe ME an apology for the scourges they have left upon the world. Because of these artists (some of whom are quite good), I have had to endure individuals and bands of very little talent copying their music, mannerisms, etc.

(in no particular order)
20. Led Zepplin (we would not have Hair Metal without them. And every boy would not play a bad version of "Stairway to Heaven" either. You know something? Stairway is about as dumb as anything by Bon Jovi or Nickleback.)
19. Radiohead (when they decided to leave pop music behind after the glorious The Bends album, someone had to replace them. However, everyone in England did not have to. First we had Travis, which is a great band. Then we had Witness UK, Divine Comedy and Coldplay. Coldplay became huge co-opting Radiohead and adding a little U2. They made a couple of decent albums and 1 brilliant one. And everyone decided to copy them. Now I have to listen to Aqualung, Keane, Starsailor, Snow Patrol and The Fray. And, don't get me started on all the Christian bands and Worship bands that are Coldplay and Radiohead-lite wannabes. Coldplay is not edgy, people. Coldplay is good ole piano based pop, like Elton John if he listened to Radiohead and U2.)*
18. NWA (let's cuss on the mic tonight.. And let's talk about Hos, b-----s, drug dealing, murder and how much of a Bad A-- I am- even if I am from the suburbs, made straight As and had asthma growing up. Oh, and we will keep singing about it to prove our street cred long after we have a house in the Hamptons. Yeah, well Johnny Cash shot a man in Reno just to watch him die- in the 1950s.)
17. Jeff Buckley (Jeff Buckley was the most talented and original vocalist of his generation. He was also a creative guitar player. Guess what? If you continue to copy his vocal stylings for 10+ years, you are neither original nor creative -this goes for you Kevin Max, and you Howie Day, and you Chris Martin. I am waiting for Tyler Hicks or some other AI Karaoke singer to break into "Last Goodbye" or "Grace" so I can shoot my television and buy an HDTV.)
16. The Strokes (how many horrible Indy Rock Bands have come out since these guys?)
15. The Cure (so, if you take the music only the freaks listened to 20 years ago- and I mean freaks in the most endearing way, I was one- add some sheen and a cool video by well manicured Metrosexuals it becomes teeny pop. Hey, I lived through the 80s musically. Those bands were good, so why should I listen to generic versions of Cure and Smiths songs today?)
13/ 14. Pearl Jam and Nirvana (when done poorly it becomes Cock Rock- more on that later. These great bands unleashed Creed and Puddle of Mudd, along with other scourges on society)
12. Jewel (suddenly every teenage girl has "something to say" with her guitar and poetry book. Actually, I think that is nice to play that stuff for your family and keep the poetry hidden under your bed and share with your therapist and friends, but don't bring it out at every "talent show." Apparently, I have not yet recovered from my days as a Youth Minister)
11. Dave Matthews Band (lets grab all the kids in band that were not picked up by the ska kids and play Dave Matthews Band covers. Oh, and make sure the drummer is really busy and sucks, too. And, we will call it "college rock" and make Frat Guys and Sorority Girls think they have good taste as they hit on each other with MGD in their hands singing these crappy songs at the top of their lungs.)**
10. Rage Against the Machine (suddenly every white boy in a baseball cap thought he could mix rap and metal- while still being a frat boy- did you listen to the lyrics of RATM- they hate people like you. This style invariably gave us Korn and Limp Bizkit which signed overwrought metal band Staind, which, when combined with Creed gave us the phenomenon called Cock Rock. Oh, and learn to spell?)
9. Toad the Wet Sprocket (too many mediocre Christian artists trying to be slightly alternative and still not offend grandma cite them as source material- and way too many worship bands.)
8. The White Stripes (They sound very cool with 2 instruments and no bass. You do not!)
7. U2 (my favorite band gave us huge crescendos and never ending choruses, which led to bands like Delirious. Suddenly every Christian band wanted to be Delirious and then found out about U2, followed by doing a pathetic cover of a U2 song. And every worship song sounded like an outtake from U2's unreleased album from high school.)
6. Indigo Girls ( gave us maudlin folk singers that think we "don't understand all the pain they feel." Well, bless your hearts. So, cash your checks on the way to the show and sing about how bad your life is some more. The 90's folk revolution gave us some good stuff, but, way too much self serious politically correct crap. Oh yeah, and Lilith Fair- which, in theory, is wonderful, but just because she sings doesn't mean she is good. Oh, and it gave us Melissa Ethridge, the Creed of Chick Singers.
4/ 5. James Taylor/ David Wilcox (No! The couplet you are over- enunciating to make sure I hear is not insightful or funny- it does not make me think you are all that intelligent or talented. Wow, you can finger pick. Oooohhhh, you can make a drum beat on your guitar and do a terribly goofy "acoustic rap" song we have never heard before... and those stories between songs. Please, spare us. Spare everyone. Stick to trying to impress the girl that got stuck coming home with you with your renditions of Fire and Rain and You've Got a Friend)
3. Green Day (pop punk... need I say more?- in case I do- Blink, Sum, Fall Out Boy and THE freakin' Offspring)
2. Dashboard Confessional (no one had heard of EMO until cutey Chris and his tattooed arms and "why doesn't anyone understand me" lyrics. When combined with metal or 70's rock we get everyone on Rock Radio today not playing Cock Rock)
1. Jackson 5 (lets get a bunch of talented singing kids together, exploit them, turn them into freaks that will do anything for attention, get a bunch of people in a studio to write their songs and force feed it to radio... Oh, and make sure they can dance. Their lineage includes Backstreet Boys, N' Sync, Tiffany, Britney Spears and American Idol. Sure a few escape unscathed, but the rest of them end up in rehab, Playboy and the Fair Circuit)

* yes, I suppose it is Coldplay that owes me the apology, but they are not original to acknowledge (yes, I own each of their albums, even X&Y)

** p.s. I was actually in a Fraternity in college. I make fun because I know.


Christian said...

Brutal, just brrrruuuutttal.

Mike said...

thank god someone finally said it...

the thing is i like some of the offenders, none of the immitators.

the upside to having so many bad imitators is that when an original and good band comes along they sound all that much better because we are inundated with such crap most of the time.

Anonymous said...

beautiful....therapy indeed, and right on the money!

aBe said...

Love it! Especially the Toad comment :)

james said...

I'd say change number 19 to Coldplay instead of Radiohead. Read what you wrote again. It really sounds like they are the one's who owe you the apology. And in my opinion, the link between The Bends and Coldplay is really thin. But hey . . . i don't have near the insight that you when it comes to music my friend.

cade said...

please lord, don't let gentry see this list. i will never hear the end of it.

i am unapologetic about the fact that i like most of the radiohead knock-offs.

and the strokes can burn in hell.

Rick said...

Cade- I actually like the radiohead knockoffs for easy listening pleasure, but truly get tired of people trying to show their cred by listening to them.

James- I added a *caveat for you. It is debateable ont he connections between coldplay and radiohead to some. Some of us see it too readily. I have seen Chris Martin talk alot about radiohead.

Nate Custer said...

Well after this link you can shoot your monitor.

Sorry dude.

Rick said...

absolutely sickening. I think I may have just tasted my dinner in my mouth.