Well, I've been thinking of how to respond to this. Now, before we all jump on ParkwayTom's back, I give the user credit for at least going out and finding legitimate claims. (P.S. I prefer to talk to people who have something more to say to me than five whole words of nothing.) I've been thinking about these claims for the whole weekend since posting the interview and receiving the response that it has gotten. While I first believed the user was attacking the band whose interview the thread ran with, he was instead referring to the majority of claims coming from the general nuance of bands that a lot of (myself included) people are talking about being part of a "revival" of sorts, or others will argue: "The thing that was always there, just more kids like it now. n00b" or "Well, music always circles round every ten years." or "Please shut up, I like my screams violent and my mascara heavy. Deal with it."
No matter your preference on the matter, sides will be taken. As ParkwayTom expressed, he is a fan of the bands and musicians whose attitudes he is referring to. The first thing the user has to understand is that most of the interviews he's pulled quotes from are from South by Southwest this year. A common thread that was being discussed during the week was in fact the common thread of community and "taking out the bad guys - grobble grobble grobble" that in hindsight, ran through all of my interviews. The subject was on my mind; I don't do interviews with questions in front of me; I have conversations.
Now, my opinion on the matter is skewed for the most part on this one because I've befriended a lot of these bands on love of the same music and ethics. So to me, just having casual conversations with the people being called out for having egos and attitudes is baffling in itself on a personal level. Now, I cannot speak on behalf of the artists we are responding to - and clearly do not intend to, but if this is what I'm comparing myself to and this is what I feel myself better than, then, by all means, as a fan (meaning point of interest in the lowest common denominator of where I'm speaking from) YES, I have no problem that these guys and girls feel they are part of something bigger - and especially something brighter.
I'll never say 311 isn't one of the best live bands I've seen, but I'll always remember seeing Pygmy Lush play a house show with Chris Taylor screaming in front of me. Seeing Brand New three times in two years doesn't compare to seeing The Plot to Blow Up the Eiffel Tower on their last tour ever with 25 people in a small room or even seeing Engine Down with 10 people in a small club my first week of college. The intimacy is what makes it for us as music fans. It's why older people want to see Willie Nelson play a small bar as opposed to an arena, and it's why you would give your left ball to see Blink 182 in a local dive bar and just walk up to them after the show. You feel like you're part of something. Once you're in that community, you make friends, hold to memories and really search out something new and true.
I think Brian Shultz (Punknews.org/Alternative Press) makes a point here. The "genuine" feature of "community" really isn't defined than by the people part of it. Time, retrospect and the price of "OOP" vinyl will be the ultimate history lesson for years to come. As of right now, I think there is general idea of what "community" and what is "real" with these bands and what they are referring to though, so for the sake of argument, let's just go with that - though the point is very much noted and agreed upon in the long run.
In some ways, yes, yes you do feel like you're better than other people and other trends. Not speaking, again, on the behalf of the bands and "community" in argument here. Sometimes I fucking do feel like I'm a part of something worthwhile, and why I won't attend Warped Tour for some time after last year, it's why I will save and try to make my way to Fest. It's why I'm quite bummed to have missed Krazy Fest and Bled Fest this year. it's the way I'll kick myself for missing the first Take Action Tour with Thursday, Poison the Well and Cursive and why I'll always regret missing the Blood Brothers/These Arms Are Snakes house show in Baton Rouge so many years back.
I think the bigger picture both positive and negative reactions are missing from my interviews taken during SXSW this year is the response in that there is community. It's not just the music - we all know there's more than that just rolling in by the quantity and quality as of late - but it's the experiences that come along with it. None of the staff members are taking hours of their life telling you how stoked they are on music because they just "listen to it for a living." There's a greater cerebral response and back story to it. I'm sure most of the users of the site are the same way.
This is the best quote I read all week - and in some time: "There are relationships you have with songs or albums or bands that no words strung together can articulate. There is so much about music that is indefinable, even beyond description, like a passage of a book that you keep coming back to because the words create something much more than the words themselves." - Henry Rollins
Do you think Henry Rollins knew he was doing something right and/or revolutionary back then? Do you think people would know who The Screamers were (there are no studio recordings) without the tales handed down throughout the last three decades? Does the story of Jeff Mangum exceed the music he was and is still a part of?
I don't know if my excitement and review scores will mean anything ten years from now? 20? How about five minutes after reading this fucking stupid blog? I don't know. I can only learn from the people I talk to and hold conversation with. I can only further my opinions on an album by track by mp3 on a daily basis.
Seriously, for a while there, I had given up. I traveled back with Mister Peabody and discovered all this stuff I was too young to get at the time because I thought something else "that doesn't matter now and I can't remember" was revolutionary. Then one day I woke up and realized the music I was getting from back then was happening in the now. It's exciting, and I'll go with it as long as I last.
To ParkwayTom and Mr. Shultz, let's meet for drinks in 2021 and we'll talk about the last ten years and how it went?
Last year I sat down with The Dear Hunter before their release of Act III: Life and Death. Funny story behind this. Somehow part of the interview I did with Casey didn't save to my recorder so we had to do a separate e-mail still after. Just goes to show you, no matter how professional you try to be...shit still happens.
Last year I talked with August Burns Red over Skype while they were over in Europe. Only interview I've ever done over Skype. It was pretty interesting. Anyway, this is what's up with Constellations....
Before I started work here, I was freelancing at some other publications, and a few articles I did never surfaced. About a year ago I was able to sit down with Dredg to discuss The Paraia, The Parrot, The Delusion. Here's what I put together.
Stay tuned every day this week for a new article/interview from the archives.
It's been an eventful weekend. By eventful, a trip home turned into somehow lacerating my eye and ending up laying in bed listening to Comedy Central stand-up and VH1 docs all weekend. Needless to say, I'm slowly regaining my sight.
Being half blind for about 48 hours has been interesting. First off, most technology (that stuff we take for granted every day of our existence) is off limits due to its bright lights. No computer, phone or television. Only blindly answering phone calls and listening to your thoughts, social commentary off ESPN or sleep (maybe something I desperately needed to catch up on anyway).
Hey, at least I had my hearing. Headphones intact, or iTunes running while I dozed off, there was still that central part of my life. In conclusion, I'd rather go blind than lose my hearing any day of the week. So kids, if you're up front for shows, start remembering to bring your earplugs.
I also want to take this time to say I'll be launching a feature tomorrow throughout the week entitled AP.net (LOST) Interviews. There are a few interviews that took a back seat to others and got lost in the mix. They were still really good articles and interviews that I think for the sake of the artists who took the time out to do them, should surface, even if it's a year or less later.
Be sure to check the front page and this blog for some archived/shelved talks. I won't reveal who, but I can say you'll be very pleased.
Kind of makes you think about the power of the Internet over print...
Daryl: “The people who are only thinking about the record, they’re the same people who get mad when you play an hour and 15 minutes and then go to bed rather than playing an hour, walking off, coming back and playing 10 minutes. They are the same children who say, ‘You didn’t walk off and THEN play the last two!’” - Rock Sound
Sometimes it takes the actual band to say something many of us were thinking.
I love this band.
I cannot wait to see what surfaces.
When I get the chance to interview them, I think my first question is going to be "Is your mother a whore?" in an Andrew Dice Clay voice.
Then again, maybe they didn't watch ESPN like I did all day.
So, I've only shot out three of the eleven interviews I did during the week of SXSW in the past two weeks. It's pathetic, and I'm not happy with myself. So here's the deal, below are the interviews I have queued in my recorder to sit down and transcribe. I can't tell you what will come first in being posted, but it's a way to look into the future. Unlike some interviews that ended up a hot mess, I can guarantee that all these will surface by the end of this month. I apologize to the readers of AP.net, the bands and my networks.
Builders and the Butchers
Kenny Vasoli (Person L)
Minus the Bear
Ace Enders (ICMAMLNB)
Set Your Goals
Want to hear something more pathetic? I was going through my dictaphone to save space and realized I never sat down and transcribed my interview with Evan from Young Widows at last year's Fun Fun Fun Fest.
I put too much on my plate. I promise I'll have it all dished out soon. Only one review left on my queue for the month, so it's this and Five and Alive and that's it.
I've had the privilege to interview some pretty interesting people this past year. One of the reasons I prefer interviews over reviews or any other writing is getting a perspective from the artists about their work. We all perceive music differently, sometimes I'll have an interview, and someone will say something that really makes me think for the next week, or even couple of months.
The past six months of interviews were pretty awesome, and I've definitely taken some advice from them. The lovely Deborah Remus has also given one of her choices to the pile this week. These are our favorite quotes from our 2009 interviews.
What quotes have you heard from an interview that really intrigued an internal discussion or you thought added to the marketplace of ideas? Doesn't even have to be an interview we did here on Absolutepunk or a direct quote if you can't remember it. How did it shape your opinion of music or the industry in the end?
1) Frank Turner - 10.1.09 - “I think that it’s [punk rock] that sort of invades your life. When you get into it when you’re younger and grow up with it, it’s kind of there no matter what you’re doing or where you go.”
I’ve been told that I’m going to grow out of it completely, but to be honest all I’ve done is discover more bands and get more involved. I hate using myself as an example because I’m only 19, but I’ve had the opportunity to meet some people in their 40’s who are in bands or own record labels. Some of these guys have gone to university and worked towards degrees in law and zoology, but at the end of the day they’re working with punk bands and they love Broadway Calls just as much as I do. These are the people that make this quote from Frank Turner a reality and it’s comforting to know this really isn't a trend. It “invades your life” more than I think anyone ever imagined it would. (Deborah Remus)
2) Jacob Bannon (Converge - 12.3.09) - "...just leave your own mark in this world. That's it. Let it be a positive one. It's really, truly as simple as that. If you stick to that, and you stay focused on that as an individual and the positive aspects of life and positive music...just positive anything. There's so much negativity in this world, I just don't want us to help spread that."
I've never been a person about money. It seems that we live in a society based on our wallet as opposed to our merit. Sure, I'd love to live comfortably, but both in financial terms and peace of mind. Anytime I go into doing work, whether for this site, serving part time or writing in general, I put my best into it. I want people to walk away from it ready to discuss what they read with their community. Whether they agree or disagree with statements made, a progressive discussion is all I hope to leave behind. For Bannon to say this about his band leaving behind that sort of legacy really hit me hard, and was the one thing I took the most away from in my interviews last year, and will carry in my career from this point forward.
There's not enough praise I can give for how Sargent House is run, and the roster it contains. It reminds me of older labels like Dischord, BYO and Touch and Go, where there were heavy hitters and smaller gems that were worth discovering in the roster. Pellow has been a network of mine since the beginning of my writing career, and she has always been very welcoming to my coverage whether I was writing for a smaller site or this one. As for the "community" thing, it's something that far extends that of a label, but the "community" of family, friends and even users who further discuss their ideas on this site. Journalistic integrity aside, consider me the Jonathan Lally of Sargent House.
4) Kevin Devine - 10.29.09 - "I think there's a lot of good music out and plenty of people looking to enrich their lives listening to it and seeing it live. I don't think anyone will sell 10 million copies of anything musically ever again, but I do think people have never had more access to music, more ways to find out about bands, and I think people will keep seeking out things to enhance or mirror their experience, or to provide a social context, a way to meet like-minded people, a night out. So I think, I hope, if you keep making things of a certain quality that you like and believe in, people will find you."
I'll never get sick of talking to Devine. Whether it's the numerous interviews, or just off the cuff conversations we've had, he's constantly got something thought provoking to say. Even though I'll be the first to admit that the music scene is quite flooded, and no one really has time to grasp a new band for more than a couple of seconds, let alone be able to afford the numerous shows and tours as of late, Devine makes a point that music is okay, and there is plenty of us seeking out the good and sifting out the bad. He also denotes that the good will strive forward with hard work and quality art. The next decade is safe. No one panic! (at the disco...)
5) Jade Puget - 11.23.09 - "We have long since begun not to worry about people wanting us to stay the same, because they should know by now we are not going to. This is who we are, and we're not going to make the same record again. If those people like a certain record, or a certain sound, then they can just listen to that record."
I had a friend who hated the new AFI album. He's been a fan ever since I can remember. In fact, I'm pretty sure he was one of my friends that got me into them. Well, he sort of denounced the band after Crash Love, until he read my interview and what Puget had to say about his attitude and many others. It changed his thought process, and gave him a new found respect for the band. It's not so much the quote, which I think says a lot about fans of bands like Say Anything, Thursday, Thrice, etc., but the fact that the quote retreated back to a positive influence in someone's thought process (see #2 choice quote).
Hey guys. Just a reminder, I have two things running this week. This ends Wednesday. I will announce the winner in the forum late Wednesday night.
Also, don't forget about our AP.net Photog 2009 feature. One thing about this though. I'm not sure why I'm getting so many photos for Madina Lake, but I'll probably only feature two, three at most. Other than that, the submissions look great. I'll be dong a blog this week with photos I've done this year, and leave the feature to you guys.
I have about 6 more interviews coming at you, and Drew's big New Found Glory interview coming before the end of the year. The ideas and line-up of interviews for next year are already being stacked - so get excited!
Here's my interview with Cursive guitarist Ted Stevens. After my initial questions, I let the recorder keep going and Ted and I talked a bit about the future of this industry. Maybe it's relevant, or maybe we were just having a simple conversation.
Anyway, I have my interview with Tim Kasher tomorrow coming at you, and my interview with Jacob Bannon of Converge for you on Thursday. That said, join me this weekend for some snidbits of the post-interview conversation with Mr. Stevens.
Are your stomachs aching from all that candy? It's okay. Like everything, that too shall pass.
This week, expect my 40 minute interview with These Arms Are Snakes tomorrow. Oh, and I'm reviewing some big album for the site that will go up late tonight when I get off work. It's some huge band I've never heard of, it's no Beach Boys, but it's okay - I guess.
My interview with John Nolan will be up on Thursday, and a special guest Five and Alive will go up Friday, because there's still so much more good music to discover!
This weekend I will be attending Austin's fourth annual Fun Fun Fun Fest. I will be conducting interviews with just Young Widows and Coalesce because there are so many bands I want to see to show you guys, that I felt that was more important.
I'll be interviewing Converge next week, and hopefully that band I'm reviewing in the week to come.
Now, for some me time: In the following months, I will be completing 90% of the interviews I've been waiting for so I can finish my book. In January, I'll be taking a leave from the site (popping up here and there) to completely focus on finishing the majority of the book, probably sans two chapters. I will be looking to tentatively release some self published copies at a showcase for South by Southwest this year. We'll see. Who knows what the future brings.
Other than that, thanks for reading! Life is good, and music is greater. Being alive is the best!
I will be setting up interviews with HEALTH, Dead Confederate, Young Widows, and hopefully Coalesce (will be interviewing them for my book, but waiting to hear back from Sean if we'll have time for a proper for the site).
I'd like to hear your input though. Is there anyone on the line-up you guys really want to hear from? I'll be setting up interviews this week, so speak now, or forever not hear from....