It takes a lot of balls to name your band with a reference to The Fall. These New Puritans (apparently abbreviated to TNPS, though I prefer the simpler ‘Turnips’) have done just that and after they were featured in the Guardian the other day, I thought I’d check them out. You know, see whether they live up to their name.
The answer is: no, they don’t. They’re basically a mixture of Franz Ferdinand and The Klaxons – and not the best bits of either band, for that matter. I’ve been intrigued by several newspapers and websites referring to them as actually sounding like The Fall. I figure this was more lazy journalism than impossible fantasy: These New Puritans have nothing of Mark E. Smith’s vitriolic wit or poetry, let alone a proper-sounding jangly guitar. In Numbers, the lyrics go “What’s your favourite number? / What does it mean? / Number 1: the individual / Number 2: duality / Number 3: …numerology is all shit”. Talking about the song, lead singer Jack Barnett says, “It’s our attempt to recreate numerology in a song. It’s a pop song with a dubby beat. But I say “numerology is all shit”, so it’s all deconstructed immediately”. Hmmm.
Anyway, here’s Elvis, another of their songs.
Robert Hughes in The Guardian Review writes a very interesting history of the development of the Catalan national myth through art and architecture. He writes a great deal about Antoni GaudÃ but also manages to mention Ildefons CerdÃ (creator of the Eixample) and Lluis DomÃ¨nech i Montaner who designed the Hospital de Sant Pau and the Palau de la MÃºsica Catalana. He also draws attention to bourgeois Catalans’ apparent love for famed anti-Semite, Richard Wagner. His mythological dialogue of the Bavarian/German nation was apparently very attractive to Catalan nationalists for whom the only way to create the new Catalan nation was to root it in the misty glories of medieval times.
As if you couldn’t tell from their boring music, Bloc party reveal in an exclusive interview with the Guardian today just how dull they really are! Moaning about the kids having too much fun sums up the attitude of these ‘technical rockers’ – the bands out to complete the destruction of rock’n’roll music.
Indie music has a lot to answer for – dull meaningless songs about cleaning your shoes, droney wet sods complaining about the rain, nihilistic bank clerks denying themselves – and Bloc Party (along with Franz Ferdinand) represent the lowest ebb of indie music. Pure as the driven snow patrol, a bunch of nice boys with nothing to say and saying it quietly. I will never comprehend how people can get excited about this music. The only polite way to explain it is that other people work much harder than me and therefore cannot afford to invest the same energy as I have. It’s easier reading the NME.
Edit: I make no apologies for my taste, but I fully respect anyone’s right to enjoy any kind of music they choose. This is my blog after all.