Aw shit. Looks like Morrissey and the NME are at it again. Haven’t read the NME article yet (we’ll be sure to post the link as soon as it’s available), but it sounds like the same old story. I.e., “a man in his 50s looking back nostalgically on the England of his youth” interpreted, once again, as racism.
Mega-manager Merck Mercuriadis is on the case, kicking ass and taking names, as well as announcing that “Morrissey signed his new record deal with Polydor / Decca.”
Update: BBC has the offending quote (after the jump)…
Perhaps they are a bit sensitive, those kids from the North who have stormed the alt.nation with their bombast and severe haircuts, but I like them. Win Will Butler, singer for member of the Arcade Fire, responds to an article from the New Yorker (and discussed at some length here) in which he takes offense at the writer’s insistence that his band does not display any influence from black artists. True to his band’s dramatic flair, Butler insists he in fact STEALS from “black people’s music from all over the globe.”
And he proves it by posting an mp3 with, what are to him, decidedly “black” sounding elements from the Arcade Fire’s catalog.
In the New Yorker, Sasha Frere-Jones wonders, “Why did so many white rock bands retreat from the ecstatic singing and intense, voicelike guitar tones of the blues, the heavy African downbeat, and the elaborate showmanship that characterized black music of the mid-twentieth century?” And:
How did rhythm come to be discounted in an art form that was born as a celebration of rhythm’s possibilities? Where is the impulse to reach out to an audience—to entertain? I can imagine James Brown writing dull material. I can even imagine the Meters wearing out their fans by playing a little too long. But I can’t imagine any of these musicians retreating inward and settling for the lassitude and monotony that so many indie acts seem to confuse with authenticity and significance.
Is that what it is? Is that why I’m getting so bored with indie rock? Because it has no soul? And here I’ve been blaming it all on the (far too) widespread love of Talking Heads…