Must We Throw This Filth At Our Pop Kids?

The Internet is full of Wonderful Things, not least two girly pop groups on the same day here on a fairly indie/difficult music blog. On the same day as the beautiful yet strangely defiling Mr T rap was unearthed, the world wide interpipe threw up what can only be described as the sequel to the Arctic Monkeys/Girls Aloud moment. Yes, it's Sugababes covering I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor, available from Binky The Doormat. It actually seems a fairly logical next step: the track sounds not so disimilar to the original, giving the lie to the Northerners' faux-cheeky comedy-pub-rock's origins, i.e. that however groundbreaking or groovy they think they might be, it's all been done before. They're basically a cross between the Faces and the Libertines anyway, promoted with the same savvy/cynical nous employed by Malcolm Maclaren (you know what, my mind has gone blank - I mean the plainly bonkers svengali of the Pistols, New York Dolls and, um, Bow Wow Wow, as opposed to the one in Clockwork Orange and latterly Gangster No.1 (in which, incidentally, he looks slightly like he might be bursting out of his own face. But I digress)).

Sugababes have a tendency to put together a half-decent pop song. I imply they do, I'm actually sure they don't, but at least somebody behind them does, and it livens life up when you have the likes of Richard X's 'Freak Like Me' in your catalogue. Anyway, I believe they did Last Year's Most Talked About song at everybody's favourite hair product showcase, and I prefer it to the original. It makes more sense, because it's blatantly a pop song under all the bluster, so it's nice to have it done by a pop band, especially one with a bit of something about them. Makes more sense than this anyway.

I often find myself in a quandary. I think, maybe it's OK to like a bit of pop music, provided it's done well (which is yet to explain my enduring fascination with Natasha Bedingfield); think, Girls Aloud, Sugababes etc. I have my standards, and for pop music to gain my appreciation doesn't mean a lapse in my impeccable tastes, it means its good pop music. But then I think, for all that, would I go and buy the album? Not even the slightest chance, so why waste my time listening to it? Which is an equally valid point. But then I think, well all the greats were pop music in their time, Pink Floyd, Led Zep, Beatles, massively popular. But then I think, well yes they were, but they weren't the most mainstream thing around at the time.

Around about that time I get bored with arguing with myself, and make a cup of tea.

But you see my quandary? Populist or elitist? 'Tis a tough call. I like to think there are those which straddle the line well, but most that try cry out for derision. It's my opinion that the aforementioned Sex Pistols are the world's most manufactured band ever, and where are they now, hmm? Dead or a joke. Sigh. One cannot but hold out hope that there will be those to come that combine wonderful, uncompromising music with a populist edge, without becoming fools in the process.

No comments: