Sunday, October 22, 2006

The Essex Green

More new music to share with you, but first some ranting about the increasing commercialization of music. I've gotten used to hearing the classic rock tunes I grew up with on television commercials. I tolerated the Vertigo/itunes tie-in, and was even amused by the Dylan/Victoria's Secret plug. As I type this it's Black Sabbath and the Nissan Titan. But this latest thing with John Mellencamp and Chevrolet crosses the line with me. I'm sitting here watching the World Series and there's John singing his new nauseatingly patriotic and derivative Our Country in the pre-game, with the new Chevy Silverado in the outfield. I've already seen this commercial with John and the trucks too many times to count in the last few weeks, and now again, in every inning. Is is just me, or does it seem like Chevy went to Mellencamp and said "John, write us a real 'American' song and help us sell our new truck. We'll even let you put it on your new album, if you want to." I really doubt that John wrote this song without any endorsement in mind and that troubles me, my friends.

Let's get to some honest music. Lately there has been a resurgence of psychedelic pop, folk pop and various hybrids. Artists like My Morning Jacket, New Pornographers, Secret Machines, Sufjan Stevens, The Decemberists and Neko Case have released some terrific music recently. The Essex Green is a band from Brooklyn that mines the same territory as the New Pornographers. Benefiting from alternating male and female lead vocalists, this band offers a variety of catchy pop music with a hint of folk lyricism. Great vocal harmonies and punchy guitar, without the overbearing lyrics that can sometimes bog down folk music. Their new release is Cannibal Sea, on Merge Records.

Don't Know Why(You Stay)



Anonymous Anonymous said...

You may find it iritating that I heard the essex green song snakes in the grass on a mazda (I think) commercial.

8:15 AM  
Blogger Mark said...

It's not irritating, but it's a little depressing. Still, it doesn't seem as blatantly 'sell-out' as Mellenhead. They're fighting for exposure; John's just greedy, IMO.

3:31 PM  

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