Back in late 2002, at a mere 15 years old, greasy and adolescent; an event occurred that changed the trajectory of my musical preferences to this very day. I’d been brought up on Punk, Goth and other alternative music but that was music for old people and I’d never admit to friends at school I’d been listening to my stepdad’s Dead Kennedys album in my room. I was probably coming out of my “Kerrang!” stage, moving on from the likes of Limp Bizkit, Linkin Park and so on, maturing, and starting to make my own decisions and choices.
I remember going to a mates house after school and him pulling a CD out of his bag which his uncle had given him. A CD is a round, plastic disc that plays music. This was at the height of music piracy so of course it was in a plastic CD pocket with a printed front and back cover. The simple front cover didn’t even say who the band were. It was just black with a multi-coloured circle on it. They had a good sound system in the living room but until then you couldn’t really tell due to the overproduced recording of the early noughties.
A rumbling began to emanate from the speakers and a solemn guitar drawl bellowed out after it as the opening track, The Dance, stopped me in my tracks. It was like a wall of noise enclosing you, almost constricting you. I’d only been playing the drums for a short time at this point but even my lack of skill and experience couldn’t stop me tapping away to the disco style drum beats backing up this monster sound. Track two really caught me. Take the Long Road and Walk it got going, I was in awe of the big sound, the disco beats, the striking guitar work and the impressive, driving vocals culminating in a scat-like middle-eight and finale. If you aren’t already aware the band I am talking about is The Music and this is their self-titled debut album.
Britpop as we knew it was just about wrapping up and the new wave was about to commence with indie bands like Maxïmo Park, Bloc Party and Arctic Monkeys still only just building their reputation on the indie scene. But, just before that came this album from The Music and it sucked me in; it wasn’t like anything I’d heard before. It was new and refreshing, with bags of energy; I skipped home shuffling my feet to the beats that I couldn’t stop hearing over and over. Anyone that’s heard me play the drums will understand how much this band has influenced me.
Does this excitement sound familiar? Does the pattern seems like something you’re a part of?
The beer scene has followed a similar path in the last few years. There was that one beer that turned you onto real ale. Then followed the beer that dragged you into craft beer… And now you’re bored. It’s difficult to get that excited feeling. Yes, you love beer; you’re reading a beer blog, but think about that first time you had some of that “old man” beer out of handpump that actually had flavour unlike the cans of Red Stripe you’d thrown back the night before. Think about the first time you thought “Jaipur. That looks interesting” and it was. Think about the first time you cracked a can of Heady Topper.
Just like it’s easy to type The Music into Spotify, it’s just as easy to pick up an excellent, hoppy IPA or an incredible imperial stout. They could be amazing but have you just had a different incarnation of it before? Just as music culture moves in trends so does beer culture; even more so that it’s now deemed in the mainstream. There will always be more bands and there will always be more beer but maybe I’m just waiting for The Music.
Video Credit: Vevo via Youtube