>Is there anything wrong with simplicity? For anyone who considers Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band‘s complicated time signatures, endless multi-tracking and finger-wrecking chord changes as the pinnacle of human musical achievement, the answer would probably be ‘yes’.
The others who thing that The Stooges‘ Raw Power is dumb fun done right would probably disagree, but they’d be too busy pogoing to even think about such complications. Today’s New Band are Dirtblonde, and they know the truth in unassailable Rock ‘N’ Roll Fact #1: a loud guitar is better than a quiet one.
The Hangman whistles and howls into your personal space, roughs you up and saunters off. “Yeah, I’m so wasted, and I’m sorry I ruined your life,” they offer by way of explanation, in the song of a similar name.
Listening to Call It Art, it occurred to me that I could barely remember the last time I heard a song where a chunky guitar and vocals were the only sounds to trouble the listener. No synth washes, drum machines or bleeps to fill the space, no lush engineering tricks, nothing other than tape hiss and a song. In a time when even the newest, greenest bands equate good ‘production values’ with success, this is welcome respite indeed.
They’ve just played the South By South West Festival (sorry, ‘SXSW‘, for you super-cool types), if that matters to you. It shouldn’t, really. They have no Myspace page. I like that. Their songs can be downloaded – for free! – at their website here. I like that too. Listen to Dirtblonde and revel in simplicity itself.