Posted byAndrew James
Any particular artist or band you think is worth mentioning? Be it negative or positive or somewhere in between, if you’ve got something or someone on your mind, spit it out.
So I had a fight with my friend the other night about what the best hair band album is. I personally think it’s a no-brainer and went with Def Leppard’s “Hysteria.”
He thinks it’s “Appetite for Destruction.” Sorry, but to me there is no contest.
Plus I don’t truly consider GnR to be officially a hair band.
I am not trying to be hipsterdbag, but I do not understand people’s love for hair bands. It is my least favorite artistic movement of the 1980′s. The music is so dumb without being self-aware. I only like dumb music when I can dance to it — something I cannot do with this music genre.
It is not even an aesthetically pleasing genre. The fashion and music videos of hair bands tend to be awful. Unlike the punk and disco movement, the ideology promoted by the genre and the historical context of which it was created is not interesting.
Nathan Rabin (avclub):
Hair metal essentially functions as glam rock’s lobotomized, skirt-chasing meathead younger brother. This disreputable musical bastard child stole glam’s look and brazen attitude, but drained it of ideas, smarts, and sexual and moral ambiguity. Now glam rock and hair metal have each received the cinematic jukebox musicals they deserved. Todd Haynes’ mesmerizing Velvet Goldmine used the relationship between glam icons Iggy Pop and David Bowie as a springboard to explore the heady intersection of sexuality, fame, and the passing of time, while hair metal’s Reagan-era prime has been faithfully transformed into a big-budget celebrity dress-up karaoke party in the feature-film adaptation of the Broadway smash Rock Of Ages. This glossy musical, from Hairspray director Adam Shankman, is a shameless crowd-pleaser where cardboard characters use the most overplayed and ubiquitous hits of the 1980s to express the aching banality of their souls.
I LOVE it, but I admit a lot of the reasoning is partly out of nostalgia. It was what saved me as a stupid jr high kid from going totally awol. It was the only music I could identify with. At the time, it wasn’t all that cheesy, it was just cool. Motley Crue and Skid Row were cool. It was fun, loud and talked about partying, drinking and banging chicks. Then Nirvana came along and started talking about suicide and killing your parents and being depressed.
As for smart, I agree none of it is smart or really intelligent, but it’s fun. And the musicianship is sometimes shaky, but if you get these guys alone and talk about music, they’re damn knowledgeable and many of them can light up the world with their talent. Queensryche is the only band off the top of my head that I can think of as being “smart” with their lyrics and their music. You can tell they’re kind of nerdy and music school type of guys. I might throw Tesla in that group as well.
But my favorite bands from that era include:
I’m not a big hair metal fan either – it’s just watered down ‘pop metal’ to me. That doesn’t necessarily mean all metal needs to be Norwegian black metal or something like that, but glossing heavy music over and losing its edge and power sort of ruins the point for me.
Saying that, I do like a bit of Iron Maiden now and again if that counts – cheesy, but a lot of fun.
And no, I don’t think I would class GnR as hair metal either.
So call it bubble-gum if you want, but I’ve been listening to the latest Keane album pretty much every day for a month. Every album these guys release I fall in love with.
It’s very repetitive and standard structure, but it’s also very bright and super catchy.
The stand out tracks remind me of late 80s and early 90s U2, but where The Edge should be, it is all piano. U2 meets Coldplay I guess.
Who gives a damn what others think? People like what they like. I’m with you in that I enjoy the hell out of Keane’s music and hair band tunes have plenty about them to enjoy.
I like Keane more than I ever liked Coldplay. LOVE
Track hi-lights: 1,5 and 9
Fucking geoblocking. And here I got all excited about a Keane fix. YouTube here I come.
I’m a big fan of the Night Train EP too. Love this:
Though my favourite Keane tune is definitely “Bedshaped.” I can’t concentrate on anything when that song comes up on shuffle:
And since I’m already on a British band kick, the Kaiser Chiefs are awesome.
I’ve been listening to the new JOHN CALE album. It’s finally something different and interesting compared to all of the indie rock schlock permeating the air waves these days. My girlfriend kind of described it as Tom Jones meets Muse. So yeah.
John Cale’s a legend – I’ve got a couple of his early albums and they’re always a fascinating listen. I actually taped one of them from a cd back in the day and it turns out it’s pretty rare now. It’s called Music for a New Society – if you can find it somewhere it’s well worth a listen.