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Stating the Obvious. by jason
July 28, 2010, 4:04 pm
Filed under: Why??? | Tags: , , , , , ,

So, yesterday, I got my new issue of Under the Radar. It’s one of my favorite magazines, and in fact, it’s the only one I subscribe to. If you haven’t seen it, go to Borders and look through it.

Anyway, something hit me today while I was looking through the magazine, and I felt I had to share it:

Most of the bands in the magazine are ugly.

Ugly is all.

OK. That sounds mean, but I’m not talking about the kind of ugly one is born with. I’m talking about the kind of ugly that one works to achieve.

Hard at work.

This is something I freak out about once a year or so. I know that beauty is subjective and all, but it seems that what started as an ’80s retro look, probably fostered out of necessity and cheap prices at Goodwill turned into this ironic “let’s look as ugly as possible” thing.


Why do I care? Well, lately, when I look through an issue of my favorite magazine, I feel like I’m looking at 100 profiles of the same damn band.

Or maybe they just keep going on and on about the same damn band.

The “rock star” uniform of the leather jacket and blue jeans has been replaced by neon shirts, huge-ass sunglasses, and pants that are two sizes too small. And I know that this is all news to exactly no one, it still kind of sent me into an existential crisis.

And it’s not just the way they are dressing. I talked about MIA’s new album a few posts ago. Here’s the cover:

I think Geocities vomited.

That cover hurts. Like, literally. I’m in pain.

I’m not asking my indie pop and rock stars to buy expensive clothes. I’m not asking them to shave off all that fuzz. Hell, I’m not even asking them to bathe. And I understand that they all can’t look like Vampire Weekend.

Vampire Weekend like to watch Norm MacDonald...bare-ass naked.

I guess that I get the challenging the standards of beauty, but to do that, you still have to have some sort of standard of beauty.

It's not all bad.



3 Comments so far
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Posts like this are what’s making James Murphy quit LCD Soundsystem. Look, if these guys DID look good, they’d make the covers of Rolling Stone, or at least Spin. I disagree with all of your accusations of ugliness, except for Dan Deacon. I just don’t like the man period.

Comment by Eli Gundry

[…] Okkervil River, the Mountain Goats, the National, Vampire Weekend So…the other day, I went off about the ugliness of the indie scene. I tried to make it clear that I wasn’t talking about actual, […]

Pingback by Stating the Obvious II: The Revengening « to eleven

[…] before you say “what about your ‘Indie is Ugly’ thing? Aren’t you criticising those bands’ lack of pretense?” Well, I’m not. […]

Pingback by We Can Work it Out « to eleven

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