I'm quite happy to admit that I'm not the greatest at keeping up with all that's happening with music nowadays. Before I started the blog, I wasn't too bad as I would buy at least one glossy music magazine per month which at least let me read about what had been released and I would also occasionally, if going on a long bus or train journey, buy the NME and see who was being talked about as the next big thing.
But over the past four years I've slowed down and in fact it must be getting on for nine months since I last handed over cash for a music mag. Neither have I watched any of the music channels on satellite telly - I reckon that there cant be much out there that is entirely new that wont remind of something else, so I've almost stopped searching entirely. It's not as if I don't get the opportunity to do something about it - I must get about 100 emails a week with mp3s attached asking me to have a listen. But I really just don't have the time any more, so all of them will be quickly deleted - sometimes I feel rotten about it, but I've got too many other things going on - particularly in a World Cup year and the fact that the sun has been shining so much that the golf course continually beckons.
My boss at work however is someone who even in his early 50s still buys the NME week after week to keep abreast of things. A few weeks back he passed me a copy which had a band called The Drums on the cover which was entitled 'The New American Invasion.' He did this as the band members, all of whom look too young to have begun shaving never mind living anything like a rock'n'roll lifestyle, were raving about British indie music and mentioning long-forgotten Scottish acts like Close Lobsters, The Pastels and The Orchids while also tipping their collective baseball caps in the direction of Sir Edwyn of Collins.
Now I've never heard any song recorded by The Drums, but based on that I've a fair idea what it might sound like. I'll probably quite like it if truth be told. But then again, I'm sure neither they nor their record label or management really care what a 47 year-old nostalgia freak really thinks in any case.
But what made me laugh most of all about all of this was the fact that the NME was devoting a whole issue to emerging American bands and telling its readers that this was the future of rock'n'roll. Just like they did back in 2001 when a week wouldn't go past without them bumming up The Strokes. And then maybe 10 years prior to that, it was the grunge bands that had taken up all the column inches. So I guess if Stateside boys and girls are thinking that they've got to make it big over here and hope that the UK's biggest and most important music paper will get behind them, they better wait until another decade passes by.
The article did make me dig out Is This It and listen to it in its entirety for the first time in maybe 5 or 6 years. To be fair, it has worn quite well, but it didn't change anything for me the way that the earliest recordings by say The Smiths or Joy Division did. Having said that, I'm guessing that quite a few folk who were 16-21 years of age at the time of its release will still have it high up on their lists of all time favourite records.
mp3 : The Strokes - Barely Legal
mp3 : The Strokes - New York City Cops
mp3 : The Strokes - Someday
Having written all this nonsense, tune in tomorrow, if you can be bothered, for my thoughts on something quite new.