My Life in Albums: 1998: Discovering JJJ

So my dalliance with crappy pop and boy bands didn’t last all that long. I graduated to crappy Australian guitar angst driven teenage rebellion just a year later. Actually, the move was probably happening earlier than that.

Regurgitator’s Black Bugs, Spiderbait’s Calypso, Massive Attack’s Teardrop, and Custard’s Music is Crap were all on my radar around the same time (1997-98).

But for me, 1998 is the year of The Living End. Heroes to a generation of Australians. Now an incredibly tight live act replete with double bass. Well. They’ve always had a double bass. They haven’t always been that tight live though. Judging by the clips I sorted through on YouTube (the official film clip for this song has had embedding disabled by request).

I think I scored the Living End’s debut album with a CD voucher I won at school, or maybe it was a birthday present. I remember hanging out in my room listening to it while reading Redwall, by Brian Jacques. Those were the days.

Words can’t express just how excited I was to be hanging with the cool kids, musically speaking, when I discovered the Living End. Though my frenemy, Sam Conway (who tried to put out the Olympic Torch with a fire extinguisher) made it clear to me that the cool kids had moved on from the Living End about the time I discovered them. In hindsight there was probably some causation there, not just correlation. Better yet. The Living End could be turned up to 11. Which was especially useful when my family decided to pull up stumps and move to Brisbane.

Other notables from the year included this little number by Grinspoon.

Though, for a while, I had merged Green Day and Grinspoon, in my head, and was adamant that I really liked the band Greenspoon.

And of course, there was the Verve’s Bittersweet Symphony. Performed here with Coldplay, because, well, that’s kind of cool.

OCC Episode 5

The fifth, and penultimate, episode of the cynical and unacclaimed Christian drama/parody/soap opera.

The ultimate episode is on the DVD and still to be ripped and uploaded. This may take me some time. But in the mean time, enjoy. May contain art rock… and Coldplay… in this one you’ve pretty much got to ignore the video – it’s about ten seconds out…

Not you too?

This article pretty much sums up why I don’t like U2 (and Coldplay for that matter).

U2 have long been so ubiquitous that their music has threatened to lose all meaning – for me, it happened around 1988 – but of late, they have truly excelled themselves. Some questions: when Bono is photographed going to church in New York with Blair, what does that do the idea of rock as The Other? Is their slide heartening proof that, after years of handwringing about music becoming so pan-generational and pro-establishment it had lost all meaning, there may actually be a point where the great unwashed realise a group stands for absolutely nothing, and recoil? If so, watch out Coldplay.

Are you a U2 fan? Are you offended by such snobbery?