So, what do we think of "Britpop" now?

Backslapping time. Well done us. We are fantastic.

Britpop...was

One of the most vibrant times in British music
5
7%
Responsible for some of the 90s best stuff
14
20%
Mostly a media-beat up, but a few great groups arose out of it
21
30%
A shamelessly derivative cover-up, in which only a couple of acts justified even half their hype
18
26%
A joke, just terrible mostly
7
10%
What's Britpop?
5
7%
 
Total votes: 70

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So, what do we think of "Britpop" now?

Postby The Write Profile » 28 Nov 2003, 01:51

Over the last few weeks, I detect that there's been quite the revisionism over the "Britpop" period in British music, in fact a consensus is emerging, that for the greater part, most of the acts were shamelessly derivative, jingoisitic, or downright gauche. Perhaps it wasn't really a movement as such at all, merely an NME/Melody Maker generated wave of hype to distract from the fact that there wasn't really much interesting in British music...

It's hard to know where Is stand because I'm of the age where I was first getting into pop music around this period, so groups like Suede, Pulp, The Verve, Oasis, Blur, Radiohead and the like were my introduction to guitar music.

Listening to Blur's Parklife now, it's surprising how much it has dated. it's still contains a few of their best moments in particular the plaintative "This is A Low" and "End of A Century" still manages to be one of Albarns more reflective lyric/vocal. Yet, there are moments on that album which are shockingly gauche- in particular London Loves, and Clover over Dover.

Likewise Definitely Maybe has really been ravaged by the Passage of Time, and now sounds like a supremely arrogant, but supermely generic peice of work. It's hard to know what the fuss was about now, listening to that album, especially considering all their best riffs of that album were stolen from T-Rex. It's still their best album mind you, reasonable fun, but in no way justifying any of the fuss, musically that is...

Now, Oasis are something of a joke now really, which is down to the fact that they released very similar albums consistently, and as well know Familiarity breeds contempt. At least Blur, in their own magpie like way, tried to pilliage off over sounds with greater variety. Their self-titled effort still sounds excellent, and although 13 was mostly swampy, dirgey, I do have a soft spot for Think Tank. I know it's been crucified by some people, but one thing it has going for it is that it's not a garage rock revival album. Lyrically, it's arse of course, but "Good Song" and "Sweet Song" are fine tunes, quite poignant

Suede are interesting in that, although they released two excellent albums, and a ton of great singles, they never quite justified their hype. They had their moments, undoubtedly but it was never quite the sum of their parts, and once Bulter left, the magic started to disappear graduallyy

Actually, the two groups to arise out of that period who hold the most artistic/commercial cache now, are probably the two who distanced themselves from it- The Super Furry Animals and Radiohead.

Pulp were probably the underdogs who quietly went about the business of writing great albums and great songs. Different Class is a great narrative pop record, one of my favorites of that period

Obviously, this is all personal opinion, and no doubt some will feel differently
Your thoughts please...
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Postby Magilla » 28 Nov 2003, 08:32

What do I think of Brit-pop now?

Same as I thought of it then: a complete load of utterly piss-poor shite made by some of the most hideously insipid, mediocre, unoriginal spastics this side of the black stump. :evil: :evil: :evil:
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Postby Cédric » 28 Nov 2003, 08:44

Britpop was a very exciting thing at the time. Oasis was a great band for, maybe, 18 months. That said, the records they released at that time ("Definitely Maybe" and a lot of single B-sides) stood the test of time, IMO. It never was brilliant, but you can still hear that something was happening on these records.

Now, britpop mainly brought a lot of shitty bands and albums. The only things that still mean something now are... well, the Supergrass records (but Supergrass wasn't really a britpop band, if you ask me), maybe some Pulp (who existed long before britpop), one or two singles by Blur and "Wake Up, Boo" by the Boo Radleys (who also existed before).

Britpop didn't bring much more than a lot of new good artists. But it was a funny and exciting period.

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Postby Brother Spoon » 28 Nov 2003, 08:49

Ced wrote:It was a funny and exciting period.


This I can agree with.
It was so bad it became funny and the baseless arrogance of new-found British Nationalism sure got me over-excited from time to time.

What's the once great Pop Music State to do when the well's run dry? Go into denial, and that's exactly what they did.

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Postby Duncan » 28 Nov 2003, 08:56

I never really liked Brit-pop at it's height, and I still don't like Brit-pop now.

Do Supergrass count as Brit-pop? They're OK, I guess.

Meh.
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Postby Toby » 28 Nov 2003, 09:19

It was boring rubbish. A brief gulp of air for deadrock that quickly asphixyated itself through its own tedium.

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Re: So, what do we think of "Britpop" now?

Postby Errant Panda » 28 Nov 2003, 09:22

The Right Festive Profile wrote:Over the last few weeks, I detect that there's been quite the revisionism over the "Britpop" period in British music, in fact a consensus is emerging, that for the greater part, most of the acts were shamelessly derivative, jingoisitic, or downright gauche. Perhaps it wasn't really a movement as such at all, merely an NME/Melody Maker generated wave of hype to distract from the fact that there wasn't really much interesting in British music...

It's hard to know where Is stand because I'm of the age where I was first getting into pop music around this period, so groups like Suede, Pulp, The Verve, Oasis, Blur, Radiohead and the like were my introduction to guitar music.

Listening to Blur's Parklife now, it's surprising how much it has dated. it's still contains a few of their best moments in particular the plaintative "This is A Low" and "End of A Century" still manages to be one of Albarns more reflective lyric/vocal. Yet, there are moments on that album which are shockingly gauche- in particular London Loves, and Clover over Dover.

Likewise Definitely Maybe has really been ravaged by the Passage of Time, and now sounds like a supremely arrogant, but supermely generic peice of work. It's hard to know what the fuss was about now, listening to that album, especially considering all their best riffs of that album were stolen from T-Rex. It's still their best album mind you, reasonable fun, but in no way justifying any of the fuss, musically that is...

Now, Oasis are something of a joke now really, which is down to the fact that they released very similar albums consistently, and as well know Familiarity breeds contempt. At least Blur, in their own magpie like way, tried to pilliage off over sounds with greater variety. Their self-titled effort still sounds excellent, and although 13 was mostly swampy, dirgey, I do have a soft spot for Think Tank. I know it's been crucified by some people, but one thing it has going for it is that it's not a garage rock revival album. Lyrically, it's arse of course, but "Good Song" and "Sweet Song" are fine tunes, quite poignant

Suede are interesting in that, although they released two excellent albums, and a ton of great singles, they never quite justified their hype. They had their moments, undoubtedly but it was never quite the sum of their parts, and once Bulter left, the magic started to disappear graduallyy

Actually, the two groups to arise out of that period who hold the most artistic/commercial cache now, are probably the two who distanced themselves from it- The Super Furry Animals and Radiohead.

Pulp were probably the underdogs who quietly went about the business of writing great albums and great songs. Different Class is a great narrative pop record, one of my favorites of that period

Obviously, this is all personal opinion, and no doubt some will feel differently
Your thoughts please...


Scarily I thought exactly the same thing yesterday. I went to uni in 1994 just as Britpop exploded so it was great at the time though. But yes, not a single one of the albums most associated with Britpop stands up today (I don't count Suede, Pulp, SFA or Radiohead as brtipop, for the reasons above).

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Re: So, what do we think of "Britpop" now?

Postby the hanging monkey » 28 Nov 2003, 09:25

The Right Festive Profile wrote:

Suede are interesting in that, although they released two excellent albums, and a ton of great singles, they never quite justified their hype. They had their moments, undoubtedly but it was never quite the sum of their parts, and once Bulter left, the magic started to disappear graduallyy



I have to disagree there - Suede certainly did justify the hype for those first two albums, Coming Up is a pop gem too. Imagine if The Strokes for instance made an album half as good as Dog Man Star.

Suede for me are one of the few Britpop bands who can hold their heads high along with Supergrass, SFA and The Boo Radleys (if they count as Britpop).

Billy

Postby Billy » 28 Nov 2003, 09:34

Merry XMasgilla wrote:What do I think of Brit-pop now?

Same as I thought of it then: a complete load of utterly piss-poor shite made by some of the most hideously insipid, mediocre, unoriginal spastics this side of the black stump. :evil: :evil: :evil:


You know -- I kind of like the brutal no-holds barred approach -- nice post!

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Postby bhoywonder » 28 Nov 2003, 09:34

Merry XMasgilla wrote:What do I think of Brit-pop now?

Same as I thought of it then: a complete load of utterly piss-poor shite made by some of the most hideously insipid, mediocre, unoriginal spastics this side of the black stump. :evil: :evil: :evil:


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Postby the masked man » 28 Nov 2003, 10:09

The problem is, what do you define as Britpop? Pulp, Suede and Blur, the three best bands connected to the scene, all existed before the hype - in Pulp's case, by over a decade.

If we're limited to the bands who sprung up between 1994 and 1995 and went drinking in The Good Mixer, then it's a really sorry bunch. Oasis were too shamelessly derivative, likewise Elastica (though their first album is still surprisingly sharp), and as for the rest - Bluetones, Powder, Shed Seven, Menswear...what a pathetic shower. Half-baked songs and no attitude whatsoever. Maybe only Supergrass have been able to transcend this awful genre.

More interesting things were happening elsewhere. SFA (and I can't accept them as Britpop - their unashamed Welshness set them apart from what was very much an English scene) and Radiohead (whose hard-edged "The Bends" album was surely a riposte to Britpop's soulless posing) were creating the real soundtrack to the mid-90s.

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Postby Errant Panda » 28 Nov 2003, 10:16

The Bluetones are touring toilets as we speak. Right back to where they started from.

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Postby Roygbiv » 28 Nov 2003, 10:21

At the time, Britpop was exciting. I was living in London then and I certainly remember the hot summer of '95 soundtracked by the likes of Elastica, Oasis, Pulp etc.

I went down a lot to the Marquee, the Astoria and Slpash and had a great time. Yeah, lots of bands that suddenly shot up were hopelessly derivative and downright shite (remember Northern Uproar?), and the buzz quickly fizzled out.

It's easy to look back on it now and rubbish it, and the whole sorry decline is encapsulated by one band, Oasis. However, there's no doubt some excellent music was created and one of the 1990s most under-appreciated bands, The Boo Radleys, came out with a couple of great albums. Along with Super Furry Animals (who were never really Britpop) they were one of very few bands who grabbed the spirit of the time and tried to do something new with pop, rather than rehashing old ideas.

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Postby Nick » 28 Nov 2003, 10:24

'A shamelessly derivative cover-up, in which only a couple of acts justified even half their hype' for me.

Now that the smoke has cleared I think the only bands of any worth from that era were Suede, Pulp and Elastica - and of course both Pulp and Suede were established well before the whole Britpop shebang really got going.

And out of them I think it's only Pulp who'll still be accorded much in the way of critical respect in say, twenty years' time - because they wrote some great songs, made at least two great albums, and Jarvis is a genuine star.

Radiohead and The Super Furry Animals were and are of course fantastic, but I don't think either of them fit into the Britpop thing, so I'll disregard them here.

Elastica and Suede both made a couple of good albums, but both were too derivative to stand as great bands on their own. Elastica split up, but unfortunately Suede didn't know when to quit - I think if they'd called it a day after Dog Man Star, or even Coming Up, they'd be more revered now.

The less said about the likes of Sleeper, Echobelly, The Bluetones, Ocean Colour Scene, The Stereophonics, Oasis and Blur the better.
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Postby Toby » 28 Nov 2003, 10:27

Yeah they can all piss off. There was an electronic revolution going on across Europe and the US and this lot of of wankers went back to their guitars. Funny that the only band that were around (and not even part of the scene) and now making headway were Radiohead.

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Postby bhoywonder » 28 Nov 2003, 10:37

Bleep43 wrote:Yeah they can all piss off. There was an electronic revolution going on across Europe and the US and this lot of of wankers went back to their guitars. Funny that the only band that were around (and not even part of the scene) and now making headway were Radiohead.


Well, Primal Scream were around and not part of the scene and are making headway... as were a fair few others.

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Postby NancyL21st » 28 Nov 2003, 11:16

Saint Nick wrote:'A shamelessly derivative cover-up, in which only a couple of acts justified even half their hype' for me.

Now that the smoke has cleared I think the only bands of any worth from that era were Suede, Pulp and Elastica - and of course both Pulp and Suede were established well before the whole Britpop shebang really got going.

And out of them I think it's only Pulp who'll still be accorded much in the way of critical respect in say, twenty years' time - because they wrote some great songs, made at least two great albums, and Jarvis is a genuine star.

Radiohead and The Super Furry Animals were and are of course fantastic, but I don't think either of them fit into the Britpop thing, so I'll disregard them here.

Elastica and Suede both made a couple of good albums, but both were too derivative to stand as great bands on their own. Elastica split up, but unfortunately Suede didn't know when to quit - I think if they'd called it a day after Dog Man Star, or even Coming Up, they'd be more revered now.

The less said about the likes of Sleeper, Echobelly, The Bluetones, Ocean Colour Scene, The Stereophonics, Oasis and Blur the better.


Agreed wholeheartedly!

"Britpop" was nothing revolutionary.Just an awful return to the beat era of the 60s and glam of the early 70s.Which is why it doesn't deserve a mention at all.That whole retro philosophy of the 90s is something I openly despise.Music has to go into some yet uncharted and yet unknown teritories,not returning to what it was.Early 90s(1990-1992) were great though.
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Postby Mozz » 28 Nov 2003, 11:27

Likewise Definitely Maybe has really been ravaged by the Passage of Time, and now sounds like a supremely arrogant, but supermely generic peice of work. It's hard to know what the fuss was about now, listening to that album, especially considering all their best riffs of that album were stolen from T-Rex. It's still their best album mind you, reasonable fun, but in no way justifying any of the fuss, musically that is...


Erm, yeah. Personally I find that (What's The Story) Moring Glory? has dated more than Definitely Maybe, which I believe is one of, if not the, best albums of the 1990's. Maybe I've grown apathetic to (WTS)MG? because of how 'Wonderwall', 'Champagne Supernova', 'Don't Look Back In Anger', etc. have all been hyped to a ridiculous extent in the last 8-or-so years by the moronic masses, whereas you can hardly say the same for 'Supersonic'. And 'Cigarettes And Alcohol' is the best single of the last 10 years - so there! :lol:

However, I do agree that since 1997, they have becoe a pale shadow of their former selves.

With regards to Britpop itself, I didn't really become aware of the 'movement' until the summer of '96 and, with Euro '96, I thought that summer was the best thing ever (bear in mind I was an easily pleased 12 year old at the time) - even Dodgy seemed quite good back then. Looking back on it now, it has had no effect on society because the charts, like they were in '92/'93, are clogged up with shit again, but then I suppose if this is true, then punk didn't really change anything either (I'm confused :? Best shut up for the timebeing)
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Postby Toby » 28 Nov 2003, 11:29

Eh? Cigarettes and Alcohol the best single of the last 10 years? Are you living in some sort of T-Rex obsessed haze?

Fact: I took part in the video for that single. It was filmed at The Borderline.

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Postby the hanging monkey » 28 Nov 2003, 11:30

mozman wrote: Maybe I've grown apathetic to (WTS)MG? because of how 'Wonderwall', 'Champagne Supernova', 'Don't Look Back In Anger', etc. have all been hyped to a ridiculous extent in the last 8-or-so years by the moronic masses.


No, it's because they are and always have been fucking rubbish songs.