Gimme A Reason

Here are 10 artists that everyone tells me (by everyone I mean friends, family, trusted confidants, critics, historians, EVERYONE!) I should like but have yet to embrace, for reasons that escape me. Lord knows I have tried. I’m open to hearing your convincing arguments on ‘why’ I am a close minded idiot or your show of support for my choices. Anyway, I’m not judging these artists or their works or how you perceive them. Every few years I’ll be presented with the opportunity to revisit these and have a clear enough head to attempt to listen to them without prejudice, but every time I just come to the same conclusions. I respect most everyone on this list, I just don’t like ‘em!

PattiSmithPA250511Patti Smith: Smith is one of those pre-punk figures that’s revered for pioneering a certain confrontational style of performing and is thought of as some kind of a punk poet, so I should like her stuff. Her album Horses is held high by everyone who has had a mind to create a “best of the ‘70’s list” (bar moi!), but I’ve never gotten the appeal here.

jimi hendrixJimi Hendrix: OK, here’s an odd one, and probably the most controversial one on this list. When I hear a Hendrix song used properly in a movie (particularly a movie about the Vietnam war) I always get the urge to dig out my copy of Smash Hits!, but what I find Is that I usually get bored after about one or two songs, and back the CD goes into hibernation. Truthfully, and I know I’m going to piss off a few people here, but if I want to listen to a guitar virtuoso I’ll pull out my Stevie Ray Vaughn albums.

tom-waitsTom Waits: I want to like this guys stuff sooooo bad! But he just sounds like my drunk uncle at a particularly uncomfortable family reunion. Has he changed since Rain Dogs?

arcade-fireArcade Fire: My thoughts? Pretentious as Hell, and vastly overrated.

sonic youth Sonic Youth: See “Arcade Fire” above.

pavementABPavement: My favorite Northern California ‘90’s slacker band has always been, and shall always remain, Grandaddy. At least it sounded like they gave a shit, unlike these guys. I’ve listened to all of their albums, and I highly doubt that anyone out there can convince me that Slanted and Enchanted is worth its place anywhere near the top 1,000 album of the 1990’s.

My Bloody Valentine collect an award for their album Loveless in 2008My Bloody Valentine: Another one I should love, but don’t. Sure Kevin Shields is a sonic innovator, reinvented the guitar along the lines of the Jesus and Mary Chain, blahblahblah. His albums, to me, are monotonous and I still can’t get though a single sitting of Loveless.

brian enoBrian Eno (solo albums). Love his production work, love the 2 Roxy albums he was a part of, and don’t enjoy his solo albums. OK, sure, Mr. Ambient and his solo output was groundbreaking and responsible for inspiring many of my favorite artists to create many of my favorite albums. Doesn’t matter. I don’t thik I’ll ever listen to Another Green World ever again.

fallThe Fall: Another interesting one, because I actually really like the Fall’s music. But not in album form. I can not get through an entire proper release in one sitting no matter how hard I try. In this rare instance I’ll take greatest hits compilation over anything else in their discography.

syd barrettSyd Barrett Era Pink Floyd: Other than See Emily Play and Arnold Layne (which are brilliant slabs of English Psychedelia) I have no time for Piper At The Gates Of Dawn or any of the Barrett solo albums. Painfully aware stuff, obvious as hell, and not very enjoyable.