Thursday, March 18, 2010

Alex Chilton remembered

I've never owned an album by either Alex Chilton or his ironically named group Big Star, but I was sad nonetheless to hear that he passed away the other day at 59. Not because I was a fan of his, but because I was a fan of so many other groups who proudly declared themselves his musical disciples.

From the Gin Blossoms to the Posies to R.E.M., any power-pop/guitars-and-harmonies band worth its salt in the last 30 years cited Big Star and Alex Chilton as major influences. The Replacements -- another group that many bands I like cite as an influence, even though I don't care for them -- even recorded a song called, simply, "Alex Chilton." Whether you were a fan or not, you can't deny that the man's passing is a major loss to an entire generation of musicians who followed in his rhyming, chiming, guitar-rich footsteps. R.I.P. Alex.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

OK Go says bye bye bye to EMI

But wait, OK Go fans -- there's more. Not content with having issued possibly the coolest music video in the history of the universe, nor with eloquently laying out the imminent demise of the bygone-era recording industry on the op-ed page of the New York Times, OK Go has taken a really bold step.

They quit. Not music, silly, and especially not the music videos which have evolved into such an integral part of their artistic identity -- no, they quit their label. Buh bye, EMI, nice knowing you.

Don't worry too much about the boys, though. In addition to their viral videos, fabuliciously different new album, and upcoming tour, in the next month they'll be appearing on Carson Daly (4/16), David Letterman (4/28), Steven Colbert (4/29), and Jimmies Kimmel (4/1) and Fallon (5/4).

Label? Who needs a label?

P.S. Love the very low-key, polite, and classy-in-a-silk-screened-dogs-playing-poker-sort-of-way "onwards and upwards" video on their site as well.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Best. Music. Video. Ever. (Since their last one, anyway)

The boys from OK Go have done it again. Watch first, then check out the equally cool backstory.