April 28, 2007
For years, Pitchfork’s reviews have been indie rock’s most influential, and a glowing review can earn a formerly obscure band lots of attention, not all of it kind. In the case of Deerhunter, boosters and bashers alike are waiting to see what happens next. What exactly is a high Pitchfork score worth these days? How many people want to watch a man eat a microphone? How big a venue can Deerhunter sell out? And how many people will last till the end?
Needless to say, none of this is Deerhunter’s fault. Certainly the members didn’t look very concerned on Thursday night. If they had seen the industry-heavy room get a little roomier during their set, they probably would have been amused. And while it’s easy to chuckle at the microcycles of praise and backlash that characterize the Internet music age, it’s not hard to see the upside. In an earlier era, a weird, intense band like Deerhunter might well have remained a secret. Not these days.
SJ: How do you feel about the current state of indie rock music? What's good about it? What's bad?
Roderick: There are obviously some great bands out there, and the more popular indie music gets, the healthier it is for music as a whole.
It means that the audience is growing for music that isn't industrially processed.
Still, I'm afraid that indie-rock isn't a very innovative genre.
People copy each other and play it safe. Actually, I feel like that's true of most modern music. Musicians now seem content to ape a certain musical style, a certain look, and count on the fact that their young fans either can't place, or don't care about the plagiarism.
Stylus lists the top ten "penultimate songs."
In the New York Times, Henry Alford examines the current trend of "literary mis-blurbing."
The New York Times has posted chapter 14 of Michael Chabon's serial novel, Gentlemen of the Road.
Bloom County creator Berkeley Breathed puts his iPod on shuffle for the A.V. Club.
David Gilmour, "There's No Way Out Of Here"
BB: Eric Clapton isn't God. There isn't one. But David Gilmour and Pink Floyd fill the void. My good friend Douglas Adams, author of The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy, died shockingly early, but lived long enough to step onstage and play guitar alongside Gilmour for a birthday present. Almost worth dying young. I think of Douglas when this song pops up, and that's good.
"A lot of times, those soundscapes are what we begin with," Sierra said. "We might have some notion of character or story, but we begin with the tiny sounds to create that narrative sonic ambiance. We use them as a guide to the songs"
AVC: What are some lyrical ideas that interest you?
GR: For this record, it was a lot of kitchen-sink drama. Domestic stuff, describing rooms and parties and people.
SP: We tried to take from F. Scott Fitzgerald, like The Great Gatsby. There's definitely a lot of paranoia going on.
GR: Lots of Lost Generation-type stuff.
The A.V. Club lists "songs that make the A.V. Club cry."
Counterside Noise interviews indie comic Patton Oswalt about his love for comics.
Author Dennis Cooper talks to the Los Angeles Times.
"The theme (of the album) is a person going about their life and something happening — something that shakes them out of their routine," Hrasky says. "They suddenly realize they have lost touch with the friends or family or people they are close to. (It's about) the isolation that they would feel."
The Age examines the "new wave of back-tracking Neil Young's career."
"Our only influence was to move forward from where we came from, or at least go somewhere new," group member Josh Dibb tells Billboard.com. "Most of the album is made up of jams we've been playing live already. There are, nonetheless, a few new ones that we've never played live."
Mother Jones lists "the 10 ways to stay hip: the Coachella edition."
Chabon's new novel, "The Yiddish Policemen's Union," is, finally, a spiritual descendant of "Kavalier & Clay," a book that expands on the sensibility of the earlier novel and its roots in Jewish storytelling. It is very good — let's just say that at the outset — a larger-than-life folk tale set in an alternate universe version of the present where issues of exile and belonging, of identity, nationality, freedom and destiny are examined through a funhouse mirror that renders them opaque and recognizable all at once.
IGN has a "must-see" list for Coachella festival-goers.