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Old 02-24-2009, 06:06 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default So... what the hell's going on?

I don't know how many of y'all share in my sentiments, but really, what a TERRIBLE start to the year!

What is going on? The quality side of the indie market has, by the looks of things, entered a stage of complete dry-up (no snide comments please from those who aren't even fans of contemporary indie to begin with). As a tentative indicator, the great darling of the wider hipster community, Pitchfork Media, has managed to gather up no more than a miniscule three albums with enough merit to warrant an inclusion in its Best New Music section since the start of 2009. As a more encompassing indicator of where the generality of indie critics stand, Metacritic also reveals that next to nothing has made any ground: the only indie records that seem to have made any notable impact on reviewers are Merriweather Pavilion and an album by British band Late Of The Pier.

So, what is the cause of the decline? Because I for one do not like what I'm seeing. It has not been this dire since I can remember. Even last year, which in many ways wasn't really great, still had a great deal more to say for itself by the end of February.

Perhaps this represents something of a long-term decline. What we are seeing in the early stages of this year is likely a mere continuation of the increasingly poor form that emerged as 2008 progressed. I would like to think that I will be proved wrong and things will pick up, but my greater inclination is to believe that we are witnessing a slow and painful death of the high standards we usually took for granted.
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Old 02-24-2009, 10:45 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Ouch.... but you know you make a great point there... it has seemed like a somewhat creatively dull year so far, which really has me bummed, and turning to my old favorites, w2hich is a pity, because i would love to be thinking more outwardly right now.... I'd much rather be gathering new bands instead of thinking about how great indie USED to be...
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Old 02-26-2009, 10:54 AM   #3 (permalink)
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So... is nobody else even slightly interested in the point that we're almost in the 3rd month of 2009 and truly high quality output is almost non-existent?
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Old 02-26-2009, 10:58 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rainard Jalen View Post
So... is nobody else even slightly interested in the point that we're almost in the 3rd month of 2009 and truly high quality output is almost non-existent?
What do you mean by "contemporary indie"? Are you specifically talking about indie rock or are you talking about independent label music in general?
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Old 02-26-2009, 11:08 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Funny, I think the exact opposite, I think this is the best start of the year in the past 5. We already have a classic (Merriwether) which is more than the entire last year spawned (save for maybe Bon Iver but to be fair, that one came out in 2007). There's also Antony, Franz, I ended up loving the White lies album, there's Marissa Nadler with the beautiful Little hells, Crystal Antlers with the awesome Tentacles, Fever ray with the very good selftitled, Handsome furs, Here we go magic, Malajube with another awesome album, Neko Case, the new Yeah Yeah Yeahs leaked...granted, we're talking about leaks mostly but really, this is shaping up to be a fantastic year...:\
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Old 02-26-2009, 01:30 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Albums are usually rush released to get them out before Xmas meaning there's usually at least a 3 month gap before anything good starts coming out the following year.

I don't think it's any worse than any other year.
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Old 02-26-2009, 09:11 PM   #7 (permalink)
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This year WILL be great as soon as I get my copy of the new album by the Church... from that point onwards, my life will feel more complete and whole.... :-)
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Old 02-27-2009, 12:13 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Funny, I think the exact opposite, I think this is the best start of the year in the past 5. We already have a classic (Merriwether) which is more than the entire last year spawned (save for maybe Bon Iver but to be fair, that one came out in 2007). There's also Antony, Franz, I ended up loving the White lies album, there's Marissa Nadler with the beautiful Little hells, Crystal Antlers with the awesome Tentacles, Fever ray with the very good selftitled, Handsome furs, Here we go magic, Malajube with another awesome album, Neko Case, the new Yeah Yeah Yeahs leaked...granted, we're talking about leaks mostly but really, this is shaping up to be a fantastic year...:\
Lol. Guess then my problem is not listening to leaked records.

Crystal Antlers EP last year was fantastic so my hopes for the album are high.
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Old 03-01-2009, 10:06 PM   #9 (permalink)
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MPP is better than any album released last year by itself. Neko Case has a great new album coming out. Eleni Mandell has completely won me over with her new album. I haven't picked up the new M. Ward, but I'm sure I'll love it. I think it's far too early to declare this a bad year for independent music.
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Old 03-01-2009, 10:08 PM   #10 (permalink)
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It's early days yet, thats for sure...and I am still trying to catch all the stuff I couldn't afford in 2008, so my focus on new releases for 2009 has been rather lax, so any call I make about 2009 being a bad year has gotta be extremely premature...
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