I WAS wrong about: UK '70s

Backslapping time. Well done us. We are fantastic.
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Postby The Write Profile » 20 Apr 2005, 23:05

I do feel that Pieter should reinvestigate this thread, and perhaps take the next, fateful step into the following decade (also called the '80s). It's been long enough time for him to recuperate, and it should do him a world of good, even if he doesn't like everything that will be suggested

(I sound like a doctor there, don't I?)

Also, whether he's changed his opinions on any of these records would be interesting to know as well...
It's before my time but I've been told, he never came back from Karangahape Road.

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Postby The Modernist » 20 Apr 2005, 23:13

The Right Scarfie Profile wrote:I do feel that Pieter should reinvestigate this thread, and perhaps take the next, fateful step into the following decade (also called the '80s). It's been long enough time for him to recuperate, and it should do him a world of good, even if he doesn't like everything that will be suggested

(I sound like a doctor there, don't I?)

Also, whether he's changed his opinions on any of these records would be interesting to know as well...


I reckon Pieter should take a method approach to getting into the music. Listening to a Human League record isn't enough. He also needs to get an assymetrical haircut and start wearing a blouse.

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Postby The Write Profile » 20 Apr 2005, 23:19

LeModerniste Baby wrote:
I reckon Pieter should take a method approach to getting into the music. Listening to a Human League record isn't enough. He also needs to get an assymetrical haircut and start wearing a blouse.


I suppose he could borrow yours.

But don't you think he'll find it difficult to get into the Human League considering his antipathy towards Roxy? (and why are we talking about Pieter in the abstract sense?)

Human League's influence has been really wierd in recent times, unfortunately it's mostly been responsible for upping the smugness of acts like LCD Soundsystem and similarly inclined indie-dance revivalists. They really did tread a fine line from this distance it seems anyway between shallow aspiration and, erm, depth.
It's before my time but I've been told, he never came back from Karangahape Road.

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Postby The Modernist » 20 Apr 2005, 23:24

Actually he should listen to The Associates first especially the early stuff collected on Fourth Drawer Down, a band too extraordinary to have influenced anyone.

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Postby sloopjohnc » 21 Apr 2005, 00:45

Well. . . as outsider looking in and you have to pick 5 albums, I see some genres coming from '70's Britain that might make for representative choices based on influence in the US. I'm not saying British are self-absorbed and wouldn't look outside who played at Wembley or Hammersmith Odeon but here's my two-cents as a child of the '70s and as a member of the biggest market flexing our huge capitalistic muscles.

Blues-Hard Rock (there's a reason Spinal Tap had British accents. Frampton and Zeppelin owned FM radio)

Glam (except for Sweet and T-Rex for a blink, I don't know if any really dented US charts, but added a style apart from denim and blouses)

Prog (Yes and Genesis were hugely popular FM radio staples)

Punk (while not popular radio-wise in the beginning, IMO the Pistols helped give the DIY movement a face in the US)

Forget pub-rock or folk-rock brit style, ie Fairport Convention and Steeleye Span. Both never caught on where I was from. Maybe in other parts of the US, yes, but I don't remember it having an influence on the left coast

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Postby The Modernist » 21 Apr 2005, 00:49

sloopjohnb wrote:Well. . . as outsider looking in and you have to pick 5 albums, I see some genres coming from '70's Britain that might make for representative choices based on influence in the US. I'm not saying British are self-absorbed and wouldn't look outside who played at Wembley or Hammersmith Odeon but here's my two-cents as a child of the '70s and as a member of the biggest market flexing our huge capitalistic muscles.

Blues-Hard Rock (there's a reason Spinal Tap had British accents. Frampton and Zeppelin owned FM radio)

Glam (except for Sweet and T-Rex for a blink, I don't know if any really dented US charts, but added a style apart from denim and blouses)

Prog (Yes and Genesis were hugely popular FM radio staples)

Punk (while not popular radio-wise in the beginning, IMO the Pistols helped give the DIY movement a face in the US)

Forget pub-rock or folk-rock brit style, ie Fairport Convention and Steeleye Span. Both never caught on where I was from. Maybe in other parts of the US, yes, but I don't remember it having an influence on the left coast



Why does their influence on US music matter any? I might have missed the point you were trying to make here so it's not necessarilly a criticism. But it does sound as if your using this as some criteria of quality which seems odd to me.

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Postby sloopjohnc » 21 Apr 2005, 00:57

Well, I was half joking, about the influence thing, but its the same thing when posters write on MOJO "why don't they put the bassist for Marillon on the cover?' Because it doesn't sell magazines is the correct answer.

My point being that representative albums should reflect a little what was influential in the largest market---dollar and cents-wise----or else it isn't that influential.

I think if you asked 5 people off the street who the velvet underground were, you'd get blank stares.

BCBers and the more obscure artists/albums they listen to (and I claim myself as a member) do not influencers make amongst a general music-buying public.

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Postby sloopjohnc » 21 Apr 2005, 00:59

Addendum: I think representative includes many criteria. If it's solely quality that's one thing. How many people heard it is another.

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Postby Brother Spoon » 21 Apr 2005, 08:46

People still remember this thread? :shock: :D
I stopped maintaining it because I was afraid I was just talking to myself. But perhaps I should delve into the '80s.

Anyway, to summarize, these were the nominated records.

All of these I love very much:

T Rex - Electric warrior
Paul McCartney - Ram
Rod Stewart - Every picture tells a story
Traffic - John Barleycorn must die
Van Morrison - Saint Dominic's preview
Buzzcocks - Another music in another kitchen
Undertones - The Undertones
Elvis Costello - My aim is true, This Year's model, Armed forces
Nick Drake - Five leaves left
Stones - Sticky fingers, Exile on Main street
John Cale - Paris 1919, Fear
Who - Quadrophenia
Kinks - Muswell hillbillies
Brian Eno - Here come the warm jets, Taking tiger mountain
Roy Harper - Stormcock
Faces - A nod is as good as a wink
Pretty things - Parachutes
Rolling stones- Get yer ya-yas out
John Lennon - Plastic Ono Band
Eno - Another green world
Wire Chairs Missing 78
MEDDLE - Pink Floyd
Buzzcocks - Singles going steady
Elvis costello - This years model
Paul McCartney - Band on the run
ELO- Out of the blue
Rolling stones - Sticky fingers
Nick Drake - Bryter Layter
George Harrison - All things must pass
Rod Stewart - Never a dull moment

All of these have good moments but haven't really clicked yet:
Sex Pistols - Never mind the bollocks...
David Bowie - Hunky Dory, Ziggy Stardust, Diamond Dogs
Who- Live at Leeds
Robert Wyatt - Rock bottom
King Crimson - Red
Clash - The clash
XTC - Drums and wires
David Bowie- Low
BULLINAMINGVASE - Roy Harper
Heroes - David Bowie (1977)
London Calling - The Clash (1979)
Yes - Yes album

These were just not my thing:
Roxy music - Roxy music
Genesis - Selling England by the pound
Yes - Close to the edge
Free - Fire and water
Pretenders- Pretenders
Wishbone Ash - Argus
NEW BOOTS & PANTIES - Ian Dury & Blockheads
ENGLISH SETTLEMENT - Xtc
Roxy music - Stranded
Elton JOhn - Goodbye Yellow brick road
Pink Floyd - Dark side of the moon
Pink Floyd - Wish you were here
Led Zep - IV
Gang of four - Entertainment
Curved air- Airconditioning

And these last records I never did manage to track down:
Heron - Twice as nice and half the price
The Jam - In the city
Sparks - Kimono my house
Joy Division - Unknown pleasures
Be-bop deluxe - Sunburst finish
Human league - Reproduction
Groundhogs Split 71
Mott the Hoople Brain Capers 72
Black Sabbath Sabbatage 75
Pop Group Y 79
Rattus Norvegicus (IV) - The Stranglers (1977)
Family - Fearless
Adverts - Cast of thousands
Damned - Damned Damned Damned
Fall - Live at the witch trials

Thanks for reminding me.

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Postby sloopjohnc » 21 Apr 2005, 17:42

neverknows wrote:
sloopjohnb wrote:Addendum: I think representative includes many criteria. If it's solely quality that's one thing. How many people heard it is another.


Who heard is more important than how many did. In the case of the Velvet, very few heard, but as David Bowie was one of them…


Not to be stubborn (which a stubborn person always leads off with) but I don't agree. I like all the artists mentioned, but I don't think they had as much influence as we think they did. Even Bowie didn't really "hit" the US mainstream per se until he dumbed down on Let's Dance.

To generalize, I think all the people on this board started out as kids who were the ones who got new artists' albums first or were ahead of the pack. I think we like to think it's as important who was an influence as much as how many an artist influenced, but I don't think it's true.

In hi-tech, there are levels of mktg as it relates to sales and influence. First you want to hit influencers and early adopters (us) before you mkt to general populace. The trick is what early adopters want from a product may not be what the general populace needs or wants, thus Beta testing.
The money is usually made when mktg to the general populace not the handful of influencers.

That's why I made my MOJO reference. As subscribers, for the most part, MOJO already has me by the short-hairs. To make money they have to appeal to newstand sales and can't feature a semi-obscure musician on the cover as much as the influencers (us) would like them to. They have to capture the semi-serious or casual fan with the cover on a rack so it can compete with other music magazines.

It is POP, meaning popular, so I think qty (objective measure) is just as important as quality (subjective measure).

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Postby The Write Profile » 27 Aug 2005, 23:37

Right, I think we should hear whether Pieter has had the heart to return to Britain in the '80s. Actually this was a fascinating thread and should be in the Classics section, but what struck me is the distinict cutoff periods around the mid-70s. I guess that's understandable, but it really was quite an eclectic decade for British albums or at least a diffuse one. (I think the latter statement might mean more so)
It's before my time but I've been told, he never came back from Karangahape Road.

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Postby Brother Spoon » 29 Aug 2005, 12:52

The Right Scarfie Profile wrote:Right, I think we should hear whether Pieter has had the heart to return to Britain in the '80s. Actually this was a fascinating thread and should be in the Classics section, but what struck me is the distinict cutoff periods around the mid-70s. I guess that's understandable, but it really was quite an eclectic decade for British albums or at least a diffuse one. (I think the latter statement might mean more so)


Thank you for the reminder, Matt.
But I must admit that unlike with this '70s thread, I've never felt the urge to change the 80s thread title from 'I want to be wrong' to 'I was wrong'. Maybe there were a couple more things going on than I knew of, and some I quite appreciated, but I don't see myself going back much even to those records. Perhaps there is something to be said for the bulk of music that was made in the UK during the '80s, but more sympathetic posters than me will have to do that. Having heard about two thirds of all those records nominated, I don't think I was wrong. (This is just my polite attempt at saying I thought it was pretty dire in general.)

(Excepting Robyn Hitchcock, whose music I really enjoy.)