It’s amazing to me that the new wave of music is moving to the pre-indie style of unfiltered, pre-processed instrumentation, but without any of the poetry. Instead of four douchebags learning nu-metal riffs and angsty, self-absorbed, embarrassingly immature lyrics, four douchebags get together and learn how to play like The Pixies or Radiohead or The Violent Femmes, with crappy lyricism and the same musical structure.
When music became so institutionalized that schools were created specifically to build the kinds of bands that were popular in the 2000s, I thought that the impending financial disaster of all these huge labels and production companies was going to foster a return to the –real- indie style. Instead, they shifted to stealing that style, and even making the idiosyncrasies into a mainstream style. Every song is still about the same subjects, the same gimmicks and the same teenage-esque philosophies. “Mainstream” will always look to keep its base in a perpetual state of adolescence.
And now, that mainstream base thinks that they are the underground edge of culture. The long-banged, off-angle camera poses have become iconic of everything wrong with every generation, but even more insidious. Self-conscious self-absorption. Because the individual is so worthy of being the center of the universe, even when every other facet of society is crumbling and degenerating into primal violence, The Corporate Individual still ravages creativity on the larger scale.
That’s all I can think of whenever I see some “indie” or “electronica” or “super-cool unknown” band that is obviously just trying to get into the mainstream. I think that the idea of culture is such a joke, now, that it makes me wonder how small the percentage is of people who genuinely care about creating real humanist art, and not just peering off to the side, far away enough to show that they aren’t interested, but close enough to lock everyone that’s watching them in their periphery.