I had an interesting conversation with Kevin from Avalanche last time I was in a few weeks ago. He reckoned that blogs weren’t as influential as they once were for two reasons. Firstly he reckoned that they’re unrelentingly positive and that everything’s therefore good. Correspondingly they’re not discerning enough any more – they don’t tell people what’s not good.
Which leads onto his second point that there’s an in built nepotism – that people are talking up their pals’ bands whether they’re good or not.
To the first charge I’ll plead partially guilty. I subscribe to the Tidal Wave of Indifference theory – life’s too short to write about shite music. So I don’t. Sometimes not writing about something is a deliberate choice, sometimes it is just a matter of time.
If I had the time to post every single day I may have to write more often about stuff I don’t like. But it’s more than that – I actually want to write about the stuff I like in the hope that it will alert some people to good music. And nothing pleases me more than seeing clicks through to sites where you can find out more about the bands concerned.
But, here’s the question. Are there people out there put off by my relentlessly positive write-ups? I kind of doubt it – I think the modus operandi of the blog is clear to anyone with a passing familiarity to its contents. It’s there and it is what is.
All of which is a very long winded preamble to talking about a record which I have some time for at least part of its contents. And it’s very definitely a ‘Scottish scene record’ since it came out last month on Song, By Toad.
When I saw Jesus H Foxx in May, I’d already bought the LP from eMusic and had played it a couple of times. I was partially impressed and wondered if it might work better live. It kind of did at least enough to make me want to give the album a couple of spins. I’ve done so but they haven’t changed my mind much.
I was drawn in to buy ‘Endless Knocking’ by the free download single the entirely appropriate for this sodden Scottish (and apparently also Dutch) summer ‘So Much Water’.
And a number of tracks are similarly good such as ‘So The Wind Won’t …’ and its raucous climax. But a lot of the record also drifts past, pleasantly enough to be sure, but without making much of an impression such as the Pavement meets disco-funk of ‘Permanent Defeat’.
That comes down to a matter of personal taste, I think – I’ve never really got that sort of disco-funk that clearly influences a lot of the record.
So for me ‘Endless Knocking’ would be a candidate for cherry picking a handful of tracks for an ‘I don’t really get the full albums enough to want to play them again’ playlist.
And yet to be fair, Jesus H Foxx are not your standard Scottish indie band. Instead they reflect the diversity of the Scottish scene and create something with their own stamp on it, and clearly have no intention of settling to be such a thing. So I can applaud the ambition here at the same time as recognising that it doesn’t really work for me.
You can get ‘Endless Knocking’ from Song, By Toad or in your local independent store.
Next – another record from a real buzz band which has also inspired mixed feelings.