The importance of being earnest: Sanoponic

The importance of being earnest: Sanoponic at the Beat Kitchen 02/24/01

Why do we hate bands that take themselves too seriously? We appreciate real conviction and dedication to art, yet we are thoroughly irritated by pretense. Sanoponic is pretentious and it bugs the shit out of me.

I like a lot of what Sanoponic does. I am a fan of Radiohead and so is Sanoponic. So much so that their singer has adopted many of Thom Yorke’s mannerisms, not to mention his voice. But that’s not the problem. I like bands who steal from other bands—most notably Fortune & Maltese, the late 90s garage rock phenom who have stolen sounds, riffs, lyrics and hairstyles from everyone that made the hit parade in the years 1964-69. I don’t even believe in the possibility of complete originality, so that’s not my issue with Sanoponic.

It’s not that they have an attitude. First of all I love bands with “attitude.” The least interested they seem to be in me the better. But I also like nice people and nice bands who are genuinely appreciative when fans pay to see them perform. Sanoponic is a group of really nice guys, even COOL guys. I sat with them for a couple of hours after their show Saturday and we laughed our asses off. That’s what makes it hard for me to NOT like this band.

The lyrics are pretentious and the vocals are WAY too affected. I can’t get into the music because I am so irritated by this guy’s singing, which isn’t bad at all, but it’s like acting: you never know when a good actor is acting. This guy is always acting and I keep waiting for him to flub his lines.

Musically, Sanoponic does some really interesting stuff. The rhythm section is tight with creative drumming and melodic bass lines. Even the song structure is interesting, but I’ll be damned if I can tell you what any ONE of the songs was about. I couldn’t concentrate because I was so embarrassed for the singer. He’s a cross between Crispin Glover and Thom Yorke and brother, that is bad medicine.

I’ll go see Sanoponic again because I like the guys personally, but I’ll be sure to hit the $1.75 PBR several times before I belly up to the stage for more of Crispin Glover’s antics.

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