Friday, September 27, 2013

New(er) music revelations!

Over the past year that I've been conspicuously absent from my roost, I've determined to update my listening predilections by delving into current-day, more modern sounds than my classic rock upbringings had previously provided. The main constant in my findings has been that, after careful analysis, I still enjoy good lyrics, smooth harmonies, memorable melodies, and medium tempo rhythms that do not bash and crash like machines (too much).

I'll take this blog op to mention some of my most significant discoveries this past year, as my tastes in music have greatly expanded (or not so; classical is still being saved for my near-deaf days!)...


For the most part, my association with Britpop began with a belated discovery of Oasis in the late 90's. Upon digesting their entire recorded output over the ensuing years, and thereby deciding to expand my horizons eastward across the pond, as it were, I encountered many other fine examples of this artform.

Liam Gallagher currently fronts Beady Eye, now on their sophomore release BE (as of the time of this publication), and Noel is still riding out his solo debut of 2011, self-titled Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds. Noel is still in big demand for live performances, and has logged considerable treks across the terrestrial universe.

Both (pictured center) brothers' bands are brilliant in creation and delivery of all the essential rock goods.

Oh yeah, Sir George Martin was said to note that, in his studied opinion, Noel was "the most significant songwriter of his generation", leaving an out for he and his Fabs!

Liam also helms his pricy Pretty Green clothing line. Paul Weller visually supports the firm in adverts.

Blur, Oasis' arch enemies (in the press anyway) were worth a listen for that reason alone, that Noel Gallagher was slagging them so hard in NME and the like. Turns out that the two bands couldn't be more different. Oasis exhibits little to none of the classical British offhanded wittiness, just straight-ahead rocking good music with all the standard pop elements in tow. Blur, fronted by Graham Coxon, always seemed to me to be more of an obvious audience choice. But really, there's no denying the audience share that both bands enjoyed in their heyday.

The Boo Radleys, fronted by singer/songwriting guitarist Martin Carr, amassed a huge tome of released material in their decade of existence (1988-1998), but only charted once in that span, with "Wake Up, Boo" being their sole lucky number. Noteworthy in this discussion, nevertheless.

My Bloody Valentine, roundly considered pioneers of the shoegaze sound, were signed to Alan McGee's Creation Records, and paved the way for Oasis' meteoric rise to British fame and worldwide acclaim. It was widely reported that their benchmark LP Loveless cost McGee and Creation considerably, and subsequently, the label dropped MBV in 1991 after the huge critical success of the LP. My Bloody Valentine later disbanded in 1997 after a stint with Island Records, and released m b v in 2013 to universal raves.

Loveless LP cover:

Ok, now that we've scratched the surface, let's see if this whets your appetite for more!

Keep your valves hot, and your whips erect! Ta ta, till Big Ben bangs anew!

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