This is a miniature music-related commentary. I say that only because much of what I blog about pertains to fiction writing or is crystal clear evidence that I’m spiraling out of normalcy.
I’m a fan of this Scottish trio named CHVRCHES. Their second full-length LP is due out at the end of September, and I’ve been reading some articles about the band’s constant touring, their musical inspirations, and their individual interests outside of the success of the band. I read one this morning from stereogum.com that was well done, so I’m going to post it below now.
The Unflinching Gaze of Chvrches – Caitlin White
Ms. White, I believe, does a tremendous job cataloging the band’s history and newsworthy moments of the last few years.
What really bothered me was the dissatisfaction of some of the comments posted beneath the article. One response suggested the band is too hyped and that the two released singles from the upcoming album sound too similar to the first work.
In short, he/she was baffled that three musicians were producing songs in 2015 that paralleled the sound of the songs those same three musicians produced in 2012-13.
I’m having trouble understanding what the comment suggested. Was he/she anticipating a George Strait-feel to this new LP? Perhaps the lack of the increasingly common “(feat. Pharrell Williams)” attached to a track’s title pissed him/her off. Maybe he/she fully expected Lauren to have played only the triangle while Iain and Martin smashed trash can lids in between hate-riddled racist commentary.
The band sounds the same.
Artists are known for their breakthroughs, whether it be in music, the visual arts, or in live performances. However, if we think about what artists do over their careers, we ought not be too stunned that later work can draw parallels to early work.
Monet’s work is pretty easy to spot to even the amateur fan. A slightly trained eye can see the politically driven work of Banksy without being told he created it.
Mumford and Sons recently stepped away from their highly popular sound with their third LP and, in my opinion, did some pretty good things with it. On the other hand, most of the feedback I’ve heard (and said at first) was that they didn’t sound like themselves.
What’s an artist to do?
I’m just curious if anyone thinks I’m way off base here. If you’re still reading this and wish to speak to this notion of expecting musicians or any other artists to constantly reinvent themselves over and over as a bit overwhelming and a little unrealistic (or quite feasible and proven), please comment.
By the way, this blog is pretty much like my other shit…so I don’t expect a lot of charged controversy to stem from it.
Peace, friends…keep peace in your hearts. We’re only here for a little while, ya know….