Nick Drake & Ian Curtis: The Musketeers of Mope

[veering away from fringe artists for a moment…] There are some strange intersections between Nick Drake and Ian Curtis. In my mind, they are the  musketeers of mope. The musicians whose decent into depression, madness, and melancholia are fossilized for all to see in their recordings. Their work slowly developed into the desperation, isolation, misery, and arguable insanity that are so commonly associated with their names. Curtis and Drake committed suicide, and their dissatisfaction with life lingers in their music. Lyrically, Drake and Curtis share similar themes, yet very different motifs. Drake was known for his apt usage of natural […]

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On Music: The End (?) of Major Label Rule

The 1970s; a time where people had lasting attachments to the music they listened to. Where conscious decisions were made to buy an album out of the thousands available. Where your record collection actually reflected your taste in music. Albums were investments, if you bought something that wasn’t immediately enjoyable, you listened to it enough times so it became enjoyable. Albums were with you for years, and the ones you loved the most were the most beat up, the most scratched. You know the exact lyric that scratch on your favorite LP obscures. If it wasn’t your copy, it just […]

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Prog Rock: It Still Exists, People Still Listen

Prog rock. A genre that has so many unappealing stigmas associated with it, often times I wonder if it’s even possible to escape them. Somehow, the younger generations think that prog rock is something to be scoffed at, and to be discounted as “old” or “tacky.” At the time, the genre was trying to accomplish a new level of musical credibility, of artistic credibility in music. Commercially, this completely backfired, and was often seen as pretentious. Yet to some, it was an idea that was embraced with open arms. Oh there were some commercial successes, of course. For instance, Yes. I […]

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Nostalgic Listening, and The Process of Association

Whenever you listen to music you are playing a game of association. Constantly. Listen to Pulp, relive an experience, listen to Talk Talk, relive another. A specific key or tone might elicit an emotional response whenever you hear it. Perhaps on first listen, you enjoyed the music for the sake of the music, but associations are bound to happen, irregardless. If you view an album as your favorite due to nostalgic reasons – memories – is it possible to see beyond the memory to the music? Can you obscure your perception of the album to the point where it is […]

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