Friday, March 12, 2010

In the dark

Black Nielson was an English band that was active in the early 'Oughts. I accidentally stumbled across one of their songs, which led me to this one, "Come on, come on". I wish I knew more about them, but sadly they were just one of those interesting bands that popped up, didn't get much traction, was in hock to the record company and sleeping on audience members' couches, and the members sort of looked at each other and said, "y'know, this is bollocks" and went home and got day jobs and maybe, occasionally, get together at a local bar and tipple a few brewskis and play a few songs for old times' sake.

Only a fanatic -- or someone who just doesn't have anything better to do with their life -- stays around in the music industry as a musician or band for more than a few years, because it's a huge amount of work and somehow, at the end of it all, you're still impoverished and in hock to the record company no matter how much money you made for them. Sane people will go, "y'know, this sucks" and go drive a cab or something. Luckily there are insane people who stick with it for years and make good music for so long, for so many years, that eventually they pick up a core of fans capable of sustaining them. Because if it wasn't for that small group of insane people who keep making music despite the fact that the industry will suck the life out of you, everything would be Lady Gaga.

-- Badtux the Music Penguin


  1. The video made me think of the style of music called "Dream Rock," which is kinda like neo Moody Blues with a slightly harder edge. Still focusing on psychedelic, wistful lyrics, though. One of the best exemplars of that style is a Swedish band called "The Soundtrack of Our lives." (Like most Swedish rock bands, they sing in English.)

    I used to be way into Nordic rock bands when I lived in S.F. Swapped compilation CDs with people in Sverige, Finland and Norway, which twigged me to the huge pool of talent in those underpopulated lands. Had the good fortune to see Soundtrack do an in-store set at Amoeba Records on Haight in early 2003, then a full show at Bimbo's in North Beach.

    Those were the days, when I could hear all the great bands that came through the Bay area, before I got so angry and cynical over politics that I lost my joy for music. Meanwhile, Mrs. Bukko is in San Fran tonight to catch Phil Lesh (bass player for the Greatful Dead, but you probably knew that already) doing a gig on his 70th birthday. I'm sorry, but if you're a folk-based musician like Leonard Cohen or Bob Dylan, it's OK to play out for your 70th, but it strikes me as wrong for a ROCKER to still be doing it at age 70...

  2. I do post some dream pop here from time to time, and usually (but not always) label it as such. This rocks a little harder than most dream pop, but it's still recognizably part of the genre.

    I have a Swedish singer-songwriter coming up in the next couple of weeks (sorry, can't be specific, I'm queued up several weeks in advance and I know she's in there). She sings in English too. Odd, I guess... but I suppose that given the small Swedish market, if you want to get any sales, English it is.

    - Badtux the Music Penguin


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