John Lennon doesn’t strike me as the kind of person who would have ever been on ritalin. And I don’t even know the dates it was invented, or instituted by the Ministry of Behavior, or whatever…
There, I’m making a joke, but let me put it to you an even simpler way: pop music is never dark, anymore. It’s as simple as that. As the empty buildings in town pile up, as people’s focuses are more disbanded onto technological gadgets, our pop music is like ritalin. There’s no isolation, there’s no fabrication of the whirlwind of aesthetic and affective possibilities lying in wait for when any two people meet. Well, women are naked now anyway, so I guess it makes sense for music to be simpler.
Part of the machinist misfortune of songs you’ll hear walking through say Urban Outfitters, is that they actually ATTEMPT to impress. It’s like some dummy-CPR faux-inspiration they’re supposed to instill in us, to go out and “live our lives” when really there’s no vision involved, the idea of people is basically as interchangeable with primates, as far as most radio songs go.
Whereas there is still sneaky, subtle, underdog pop out there, and you’re likely to hear it from seemingly unexpected sources, like MMJ, circa Evil Urges, whom you thought all along were psychedelic. Don’t underestimate those Southern boys, they’ve got some serious taste, and if anything, what we Northern boys get them on is originality, with your Tom Waits’s and your Iggy Pop’s (whoa, totally didn’t mean to make a Coffee and Cigarettes reference there), they make up for in aesthetics, class, and overall skill in crafting a song. But the south isn’t “cool.” There. All the better. Pass me a glass o’ that.