Wednesday, August 17, 2005

S, VII

Soundgarden- Badmotorfinger

You know it’s just a matter of time before the grunge revival begins. Honestly, I was surprised when new wave wannabes took over the airwaves recently because I had been banking on grunge first. It makes sense- get the right pedals, smoke a ton of pot, crank Sabbath, and when you hear the beep, you’re there. The movement (if you wanna call it that) has easily commodified fashion and a martyr going for it, but has a few things working against it, as well- Pearl Jam and Mudhoney, for starters, bands who were there back in the day who are still playing (Mudhoney is still playing, right? I’m assuming because hey, what else are those guys going to do?). Courtney Love, bless her heart, falls into the against category as the poster child for ‘look what’ll happen to you.’

The new wave will fizzle out, something else will fill the void (will it be old school hip hop? Straightedge mach whaveter point oh?) and THEN grunge will come back, I think. A little too early, still- the movement/era/whatever hasn’t had enough time to languish in relative obscurity. There’s that Gus Van Sant biopic, we just had the Nirvana box set released in the past year, blah blah blah.

Whenever the revival does happen, I’m sure that Soundgarden will be held up high in the halls of grunge academia, but will not be imitated. There’s no way- no fucking WAY- that any bunch of kids could pull off an effective dupe of the band without sounding either contrived or pandering. Seriously, how do you do it? There’s Chris Cornell, right, whose voice goes up so high that he sets off garage doors in the suburbs AND manages to sound tough. And the band? Forget it. Chunky, heavy riffage that draws on the whole aforementioned stoner/Sabbath/’My War’ vibe in a manner so convincing that kids in high school smoking areas across the country areas nodded their heads in rockin’ unison, even when the band got all tech on our dumb asses and threw in breakdowns that were in absurd time signatures, like the end of ‘Rusty Cage’, which I think is in nineteen (‘Rusty Cage’, for the record, is a rare song that was not made better when put through the Johnny Cash Cover Machine). Dumb enough for the masses, smart enough for the prog geeks, popular as hell and unrelenting. Not the obvious place to start a revival. Hell, pass the Heaven 17 songbook, willya?

Speaking Canaries- Songs For The Terrestrially Challenged

Damon Che, the incredibly octopus-like drummer from Don Caballero, playing guitar on a bunch of songs that sound like mathier Diamond Dave-era Van Halen. Put your tongue far enough into your cheek and you can do anything.

Spice Girls- Spice Up Your Life
Spice Girls- Stop


If you’re reading this page, you’re a scenester, like it or not. Which means that you’re too cool to admit certain things. Say whatever you need to, keep that image untarnished, or, better yet, use the weak-ass irony defense instead of taking a fucking stand and saying that you like something. Easier to pose.

Admit it- you had a favorite Spice Girl.

Everyone did.

And some of their pop songs weren’t half bad.

No, wait- I’m too hip to admit that they had catchy, disposable radio-friendly ditties.

Check out my Styx hat. Pretty cool, huh?

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