Punk Warriors Strike Again

No, I don’t have particularly high hopes for the new Pink Floyd album “The Endless River”. When the two remaining members of the band have more or less made it clear that it’s warmed-up leftovers from twenty years ago, I think it’s unrealistic to expect something to rival “Meddle”. Of course there’s always the chance it will be a pleasant surprise; few people expected three-quarters of the original Black Sabbath to come up with something as strong as last year’s “13″.

But when I see a national newspaper review the thing, and the opening line is the hoary old cliché “This is why punk had to happen”, my hackles start to rise. I guess the reviewer deserves some credit for laying his prejudices on the line so openly, but with an opening line like that you know there is absolutely no point in wasting any time reading the rest of the review.

Now punk delivered some great back-to-basics rock’n'roll records that stood the test of time, and that ought to be its legacy. But the whole “Year Zero” thing was always total hogwash, and it’s still galling to see generations of music writers who were too young to be around at the time swallowing the narrative whole.

There are old punks for whom two minutes of adrenaline-changed stripped-down rock’n'roll is the peak of musical perfection, and more power to them. But I’ve always suspected that for some of them, it was all about the excitement of being part of a “scene” and they didn’t really like the actual music at all. Unfortunately far to many of the latter group ended up in influential positions in the media, and music has been the worse for it ever since.

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2 Responses to Punk Warriors Strike Again

  1. Pingback: A Thousand or so Words on “Dad Rock” and the Old Punks | Crash Course in Face Pollution

  2. Tom B says:

    A great couple of articles Tim
    I must confess that back then if it wasn’t punk I didn’t want to know but I may be permitted the folly of youth. I know better now. For me though, it was always more about the music than the fashion or being part of any scene. I never bought into the year zero thing because I was blissfully unaware of prog. Even in the seventies it was never on mainstream radio or tv and although some of my schoolmates were into Floyd or Tull I never really listened to it. I closed my ears. As I say, if it wasn’t punk …
    These days I don’t play much punk stuff. Most of it has not stood the test of time and I’d much rather listen to prog or symphonic metal but I’ll still give SLF or the Stranglers a spin (the ultimate prog-punk crossover band?).