Friday, 2 January 2009

A Personal Music Crisis?

This is a bit of a thought piece, but I’ve stumbled upon a personal musical crisis. I’ve been away from Australia for over 10 months now and thus away from the Australian music scene for the same amount of time. When it comes to think about it, other than local Brisbane acts, I have been generally out of touch with Australian music for about two years now. I generally used to listen to the radio in the car, but then I invested in an mp3 car stereo and thus ended my usual exposure to new music died. Triple J dominated my radio and then suddenly I had alternatives.

The defining moment of my alienation from Australian musical tastes became readily apparent when I read the Triple J album of the year awards along with the picks from the Triple J staff. Generally, Kings of Leon, The Presets and MGMT dominated the lists, groups which I’m not particularly fond of. What does that mean? Ten years ago I would have sworn that I’d never get sick of Triple J and the music they chose to play. I would never think to doubt the word of Richard “The King” Kingsmill? But now, I do. Does it mean that everyone has poor taste, or my taste has dramatically changed?

In the case of Kings ofLeon and MGMT, these albums are generally acknowledged by the industry throughout the world that these are great albums. That’s fair enough, however I don’t like them. Does that mean I’m fundamentally out of touch with popular music? From a certain point of view it is quite depressing that I’d prefer listening to the greatest hits of Electric Light Orchestra than putting the ‘Sex on Fire’ single anywhere near my compact disc player.

It is somewhat funny. You grow up thinking your parents tastes in music is fundamentally terrible and that you will never become out of touch with the popular pulse, but already I find it happening. At a mere twenty seven years, I already feel middle aged.

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