Where Ya Going?
by Dan Greene
An album that redefines a band or a genre, hey?
When I was younger I used to completely ignore jazz. If I paid attention it was only to deride it as pretentious shitty music. I eventually caught on to some of it and decided that it might not all be a waste of time. Miles Davis’ Birth Of The Cool was one of the first albums to grab me. Miles was always experimental as hell, and this album is considered to be the one that started the break away from bebop jazz in the late 40’s– which is cool too, but, you know. One step at a time here.
Miles pissed people off a lot in his career, and he did it again in 72 with On The Corner. That one redefined what I thought jazz could be altogether. That was like nothing I’d ever heard before the late 80’s or early 90’s, and Miles had put it out in 72. And everyone hated it for years. That album sounds like some kind of ambient funk jazz remix, full of repeated movements with background loops and samples and shit. Give it a listen, it's a crazy record. And it's crazy that it was put together in 72.
Now this is easy.
Everyone knows that London Calling is a great album, a breakthrough milestone yeah yeah yeah. And it is, and it completely redefined The Clash at the time. The first two albums are that classic late 70’s punk sound, but London Calling drew on a lot more influences. Other influences were expanded on.
The Clash were a group that never wanted to stop exploring boundaries and redefining themselves, and they weren’t afraid to venture into sucking ass either. It’s hard to find people to even admit it these days, but have you ever heard Cut The Crap? I love The Clash, and I’m a forgiving sort, but c’mon. Hell. There’s a good argument that that album actually helped redefine sucking. There are no good songs on that album. There are only songs that don't suck as bad as the others.
Gang Of Four
History has been kind to Gang Of Four. The way some people write about it, you'd swear that music was standing around and scratching its head, wondering what to do next when Gang Of Four came along and showed music the way. This is a bit of a stretch, but there's no denying that Entertainment! doesn't sound much like anything before it, and you can still find traces of their influence in a lot of bands today.
Dirty Rotten Imbeciles
Man I loved DRI when I was a kid. Still listen to them every now and then for that matter. Not as much as some other stuff from my younger years but it gets its turn…. the self titled album and Dealing With It in particular. Makes me think of drinking beer in a garage. Those guys were young and messy and they had a blast making fast messy music. But they had ambitions too, and they liked more than one kind of music. So they threw some metal into it and released Crossover. And yeah, I still liked it. That album redefined DRI pretty well. Some people hated it, they didn’t want no chocolate in their peanut butter. Other people loved it. DRI are mentioned time and again as influences on newer bands, and the boys are still around.
Well that's all you're going to get out of me. You've heard from the other editors, now do your part. Who did we leave out?
For my generation, Nirvana was the start of a revolution in a sense. Signifying the birth of the grunge movement integrated a new spin on how artists could interpret angst into a song.
Posted by: Jennifer (from a Lady Laments) | March 4, 2007 3:52 PM