Wednesday, 28 April 2010


Impulse purchase of the March issue of music magazine Artrocker made me feel every minute of my 25 years. Which equates to 13140000 minutes or thereabouts. 20 pages in and I’d found I’d only heard of about two of the bands mentioned. Note I say ‘heard of’. Yet to actually ‘hear’.

The font is miniscule but at least that helps balance the proportion of text to adverts (which are relevant, at least). By comparison, as a former Q Magazine subscriber I’m willing to bet that that publication is now twice the price and half the size, brimming over with adverts for cars and watches combined with endless discussion of Paul Weller’s back catalogue. But yes, tiny text, meaning during reading I likely resembled a myopic pensioner with my tongue stuck out wondering if X will really be the one band to rock my sandal-encased socks in the 10s.

Something I deduced from my short-lived return to the world of music journalism is that all the best band names have definitely been used up. You thought !!!, Elbow and British Sea Power were bad enough, try wrapping your tongue around ‘Two Door Cinema Club’ and ‘Everybody Was In The French Resistance...Now!’ (My indie band name would be ‘You Had Me At Hello’ and my punk band would be ‘Unresolved Sexual Tension’. Which are both probably already taken.)

On the topic of inspiring fandom, a member of The Kabeedies actually admits ‘...personally, I would never be THAT excited by us. I mean, I would never go ‘Oh my God, I love that band I’m going to go and do a painting of them.’ That’s a shame. I can distinctly remember putting a lot of effort into copying Richey Edward’s ‘Useless Generation' tattoo until I was satisfied with how it appeared on the notebook I used at school. How impressed would all my peers be! Time well spent! (in isolation during and after, as it eventually emerged). And you have to admire the music journos whose task it is to extract quotes and anecdotes from bands who’ve yet to shape a history they can reminisce over, who are all still bright-tailed and bushy-eyed. Although I suspect one of the attractions of interviewing these bands no-one’s heard of and who will 95% of the time fade to obscurity is that they’ve yet to be tarred by the Sell Out brush having had Ferngully Cotton-Britain present them with the Mitzubishi Hotdog award for Best Beard in a Music Video. Bless these desperados aching to make their name touting the (imagined) successes or failures of pop groups who have yet to ‘pop’ and might as well be imaginary themselves for all I know.

In the live reviews section Alice Wagstaffe, in writing up a Julian Casablancas performance, mentions “The Strokes released Is This It nine years ago (how old do you feel right now?)”

Do I have to answer that.

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