In a town where everyone’s an individual, there’s a feeling that style trumps all. The distinctive New York Indy scene is one of weirdness, cacophony, jarring flavors and colors. It’s funny – in this place with such rational design, both naturalistic and geometrical, the cutting edge favors the chaos of Canal Street over the flowing lines of Central Park or the monstrous towers along the grid.
Ahh, but for the Indy scene, those are relics. Those are fossils of another time, before youth, before the meme-flinging social net. Back when style was grouped into movements.
Instead of impressionism, cubism, punk rock or cyberpunk we have this post-modern mishmash. Defy generalization, even if your content sucks. Do something new. Cultivate a new sound, a new look, a new paradigm. That’s the point of art, stretching boundaries, always splitting off the sidelines, cause fuck the mainstream. Right?
In a place of endless reference, instant-access to everything from the dawn of time to two minutes ago, those paradigms get old fast. “The band is so last year.” “I used to listen him before he got airplay.” “She sold out.” It’s ruthless one-upmanship fueled by a network of armchair elitists wielding a thesaurus of derogatory diatribes.
It’s not that I hate artists trying new things. In fact, I don’t mind the artists themselves, go right ahead and be strange/weird/wonderful. I’m tired of the media collective that considers it a necessity to be overexposed to niche and underground cultures. In essence, the pitchfork-ization of creative work.
And for every jaded music journalist or art critic, there’s a whole cache of cadets marching in lockstep, adopting eccentric top ten lists as doctrine.
So forget it. I’m not going to keep up. I wont purge the major labels from my playlists. I wont ditch the trashy pulp genre novels. My Netflix queue will contain big budget superhero flicks and Herzog documentaries alike.
The one thing I’ll stop reading is the critics.