Hadnot Creek – Oh Silly Me
The hair metal bands must have felt pretty silly by the 1990s. Here they’d spent the past decade working on their dance moves, their awesome stage attire and, of course, their hairstyles. But, suddenly, these songwriters who barely looked like they bathed, or could afford more than two shirts, came storming through record stores, radio airwaves and on to people’s listening preferences.
Most remember the grunge bands, but less socially aggressive types like the Silver Jews’ David Berman and Sparklehorse’s Mark Linkous also, surprisingly, gained loyal fanbases. Their tools were usually their words, the sad feelings those expressed and an untold pact between themselves and the audiences. The artists would focus on their poetry, while the audiences wouldn’t ask them for stellar production values or a hard-rocking good time. It was part of the deal.
Hadnot Creek is a man of similar ilk. Oh Silly Me is the kind of love song determined to break your heart, just like it broke the writer’s while putting it together. It’s more of a poem than a song, really, but if you put your trust in this artist, the music is bound to repay you.
Routine Faces – Mates
Back in the 1980s, the lines were clearly drawn between artsy music, pop music and rock. A few bands successfully meddled with all those styles, but as far as labels and the record-buying public was concerned, an artist would need to choose.
Thankfully, as record label behemoths were put to rest, so did their influence and marketing strategies got tossed out the window. Many of the new generation of indie-rockers like their pop hooks, their well-produced dance songs, as well as artsy, off-the-wall tactics to their writing.
Routine Faces, a four-piece group from Chicago, embrace their love of pop music but deliver it in a manner where the stages of big rock festivals will surely open (once, of course, live music is once more on the cards). When that happens though, make sure that Routine Faces gets a slot towards the end of the day. This is music to be played in the dark, hopefully, accompanied by a dazzling disco ball.