Monday, June 16, 2008

Your Favorite Band Sucks

From the Independent (UK), last week.

ANDY GILL: Why I Hate Coldplay

Pompous, mawkish, and unbearably smug, Coldplay have conquered the charts with the sonic equivalent of wilted spinach, argues Andy Gill. And in the process, they've poisoned an entire generation of British rock music

Without wanting for a moment to give the impression that it's anything other than a wonderful way to earn a living, there are times in a rock critic's life when the soul sighs, and one faces the blank screen with heavy heart and empty head. Last week was one such time.

A new Coldplay album.

When, all too frequently, people say how great it must be to earn one's corn writing about music, it's hard to disabuse them of that opinion. Of course it's great! But I tend to offer one small caveat: it's not just writing about music that you enjoy – often, duty makes demands beyond one's personal tastes. And while experience, or low cunning, might spare one unnecessary exposure to the reviewer's less vital duties – hip-hop album tracks entitled "Intro", "Interlude" or "Telephone Skit", triple-albums by Prince, or the solo projects of sundry Rolling Stones – sometimes an act is so huge, so current, that it's impossible to ignore their enervating new release.

A new Coldplay album.

Heh heh heh.

Read the rest here.

Meanwhile -- does anybody know if this is the Andy Gill, i.e., the brilliant guitarist and founding member of Gang of Four? If so, he's definitely one deeply bitter guy....


Anonymous said...

well it looks like someone fingers are heading for chris martins butt -- that should shut him for a while

Ali said...


They are headlining a festival here in July, but I'm not sure why they're the lead act. They make pretty sounds, but who wants to rock out to Coldplay? I picture us all lying on chaise longues, raising our lighters with great effort. Perhaps dozing off from time to time.

Anonymous said...

Is there any truth to the rumor that Coldplay's orginal name was Cold Lay? Seems far more appropriate, IMHO.

Anonymous said...

It's true. They make Radiohead seem like a pack of Alpha Males.

Anonymous said...

The only reason they aren't the worst band in the world is because Panic at the Disco is still together.

NYMary said...

Chris Martin did have an appropriately self-deprecating appearance on Extras, in his defense.

But they still suck.

Ali said...

Oh, I forgot about that nymary. I did think the better of him for that piece. He was wonderful.

TJWood said...

I did some 'net research to see if this Andy Gill is indeed the same Andy Gill from Gang of Four. I didn't find anything truly definitive one way or another, but from what I've found I don't believe they are. For what it's worth, this Andy Gill did review a 2005 comeback album by the other (or maybe not the other?) Gill's band. The album, a 2 CD collection of remakes and remixes, doesn't sound very interesting, but you can access the review here. You would think if Andy Gill was reviewing his own album, he'd give it better than a mixed review :)

As for the article: Well, if you feel you've read it before, you have. The sentiments here are basically the same as in the infamous trashing of Coldplay by Jon Pareles in the NY Times three years ago. I wasn't able to catch the free streaming of the album on their MySpace site, so all I've heard is "Violet Hill", which doesn't do much for me. Just about all the comments about Coldplay on this blog--mostly aimed at Chris Martin--have been quite negative, but I've heard enough interesting things from them(as well as, for sure, some rather trite things) that I'm looking forward to hear what Eno's been able to do with them.

steve simels said...

You would think if Andy Gill was reviewing his own album, he'd give it better than a mixed review :)


I must have missed that Pareles piece...thanks for the link.

SteveNS said...

I put a link to this article in an Eschaton comment thread on the weekend, since I thought it was a great piece whether you agree or not.

Me, I'm not bothered by bland inoffensiveness in my music, but that's obviously not the case for Andy Gill.

(Or for a lot of other people, to judge by the reaction to it.)

danny1959 said...

Gang of Four were a pretty bitter band all those years ago, weren't they?

Noam Sane said...

...any reaction to Coldplay that's more vitriolic than a groan or a cringe can't help but seem unequal to the offense.

I'd agree.

steves said...