It’s Wednesday & I stayed up all night last night reading a book. That’s how exciting this week has been. I will say, though, that one element of a boring week is having the time to discover new & exciting artists. I should clarify that, new & exciting artists for me. While away it was certainly hard to keep up with new trends & artists. So the “new & exciting artists” I refer to are merely new & exciting to me. Now, that I’ve driven that phrase into the ground I should get on with the post.
Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros have been around for awhile, but I just discovered them recently. This excerpt from the always reliable Wikipedia:
After breaking up with his girlfriend, moving out of his house, and leaving a 12-step program for addiction (he left, as he has said, to live in a more honest reaction to the truth of the moment, not be bound to certain behaviors by fear-based dogma), Ebert began work on a book about a messianic figure named Edward Sharpe. According to Ebert, Sharpe “was sent down to Earth to kinda heal and save mankind…but he kept getting distracted by girls and falling in love.”
It’s all kinda been done before. Perhaps, this is Ebert channeling his inner Ziggy Stardust or perhaps it’s a marketing gimmick. Regardless, the finished product is fantastic. It’s sort of Avett Brothers meets Sly & the Family Stone. I wasn’t a huge fan of Ima Robot which was Ebert’s first/other band & to be quite honest I’m not really a fan of his, but what I am a fan of is the band. It has such unique sound & quality. It fits so nicely into the indie scene. A quote I heard from Alice Cooper this morning actually sums up the music scene these days & why a scene like the so-called Indie scene is thriving:
If Bob Dylan ever showed up on American Idol he would never get past the first stage because he’s too unique. They [the judges] are looking for the perfect little package, so Mick Jagger would never make it. You go through all the big stars, none of them would ever make it.
Alice speaks the truth. There is such little room for creativity these days in the framework or box of popular music. It’s a bit disheartening to think that a band like Arcade Fire is considered Indie even though they have the Number #1 album this week with their phenomenal album The Suburbs. They sold over 100,000 units in one week & they’re still considered Indie. They’re a “fringe” group, because they don’t fit neatly into the box that Justin Bieber fits into. The only box that Jason Mraz fits into, however, is the one that goes into the God Damn garbage can.
My contention is not that there shouldn’t be Justin Bieber’s, but only that there is room for other acts. I saw the other day that someone pelted him with a water bottle while he was on stage & there were so many people who got a kick out of this. I was not one of them. The kid, obviously, has talent. He has an androgynous look about him that seems to appeal to someone, but I wouldn’t wish him ill. He’s living his dream & while he’s doing everything he can to ruin music, he really isn’t hurting anyone. The only artists that there are no room for are Jason Mraz & She Wants Revenge & really She Wants Revenge are pretty much irrelevant at this point.
I’m really not sure where Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros fit. I just know that I like them. To quote Tim Robbins from Bull Durham this is what it’s like to listen to them.
“It feels out there. I mean, it’s a major rush. I mean, it feels radical in kind of a tubular sort of way, but most of all, it feels out there.”
40 Day Dream – Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros
Home – Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros
One More Night – Bob Dylan
Miss You – Rolling Stones