Mar. 2 Reviews / Bands everyone else likes...

First off, thanks to everyone who submitted suggestions for discussion topics. I plan on trying to get to nearly all of them in time.

I'll start with one that several people mentioned, though. What are some bands that seemingly everyone likes but you? I'm sure we'll see a lot of popular bands named here, but are there any indie or electronic artists that you can't get into that everyone seems to fawn over?

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smashing pumpkins
pearl jam
new pornographers
Death Cab for Cutie

and the only band here I actually hate is smashing pumpkins, and I only hate them because billy corgan is a pompous ass and in spite of that they are still wildy popular. eveybody else here is just over-rated.

know what's hilarious?


I don't understand why people are mentioning Fiery Furnaces here. they are not popular and I don't know anyone (besides my cousin and myself) who like them. apart from a few pitchfork reviiws, they get no love! from nobody! all you haters must have a bunch of really cool friends with good taste in music.

I have to agree with Collin's sentiments about Pavement. I just don't understand the appeal of that band. It sickens me that one of my favourite bands, Silver Jews, are recognised as some kind of side-project for Pavement. There is simply no comparison. It seems to me that what Pavement were missing was an enigmatic character like Dave Berman to guide them away from their completely useless lo-fi noodling.

The Greatful Dead- Just not very good. Never liked them.
The Smiths- They have 1 decent song that they sold to some car company for a commercial.
Any country music- I don't get the appeal.
Wilco-A glorified garage band.
Black eyed peas- What is that???
Sigur Ros- Please stop that guy from yelling. (SUUUUIIIIIII?!)
REM- Whiny voice, average music.

I disagree with the Soundgarden mention. They are a great band. Chris Cornell has to best rock voice I have ever heard!
Guns and Roses- Appetite for Distruction has got to be one of the best rock albums ever released.
Also, I CAN forgive Beastie Boys for Licensed to Ill. They have some really groovy stuff, Especially there instrumental songs.

Fleetwood Mac and, to a much greater extent, Stevie Nicks is one of the most overrated singer/songwriters to have ever become popular.

I've never liked them/her (especially "Landslide") and I like them even less now that my boss plays them on many of his playlists.


Dani "El Hincha"
I totally understand personal dislikes, and such is admissable; however, the Smiths were the gateway drug for me that got me entrenched in "Indie" music. In general, I've always loved British rock and consider it to be generally the best. One thing I want to know though, after reading all the comments below, I am astonished to not hear any mention of The Jam or St. Paul Weller. I mean c'mon, would Brit Pop even be Brit pop without The Jam's undeniable contribution to it. I love the Smiths, but by personal prefference, I have to say that they take a back seat to the Jam. Also, like some of you, I never got into the 'grunge' seen, but the only band worth listening to from that movement is Alice in Chains. As of late, I must say that a lot of the newer bands just don't do it for me. I do listen to a lot of Opeth though, but they are Melodic Death Metal. Being that this is mainly a forum for indie music, it is unconscionable to me that no one has made mention of Sunny 'D.' Well, that being said, to the rest of you out there, "Up the Irons!"

herzog 77
hi friends... its my first time here.

just want to say, that i had the best time reading these comments.

cheerz to everyone that has the sense and tollerance to do such well done critics (no kidding)...

by the way . . .


of course i respect them.. but just doesn´t work with me.

Im sorry can't take this Mogwai baiting anymore. Their new album is superb and they are easily one of the best live bands on the planet right now

Most of celebrated hip hop - Kanye West especially. Fiery Furncaces. The Hold Steady. Cold Play.
Regarding Joanna Newsome -- I have to say I felt the same way, until one worked. And I absolutely love it now.

Peter T. , Miles has to answer to the father in heaven... by that I mean COLTRANE!!

joanna newsom grates against my eardrums. ben folds, ben folds five, ben folds seventy three, i dont care all of the songs sound the same, and it sounds like AWFUL. bob dylan? i dont think so! please go read his lyrics, there is sweat and blood in those songs. as much as i hate to admit it, same goes for jeff buckley, though i cant stand his voice, too sweet.

Mmm... miles davis, I love "sketches of spain" but I've never understood what's so great about "kind of blue", so boring...

You'll probably hate me for this, almostcool, but I also get annoyed at "in the airplane over the sea" by neutral milk hotel.

And... wilco. I don't get them. They have a few good songs but I feel they are very overrated-

I second Sonic Youth and Mogwai, and I'd like to add U2. They have a few decent songs but no... simply not.

Bob Dylan?! You so crazy!

Wow, this thread has surpassed all past ones in terms of number of responses, so it seems that people had some stuff to get off their chest. Definitely some interesting entries below, including a few with such wide variety that it makes me wonder just what the heck they do enjoy.

So it goes, I suppose. At least things managed to stay fairly civil.

I have to totally agree with Bob Dylan and also with Jeff Buckley. I would have agreed with Cat Power, but her new album is fuckin' tough.

the first that come to mind:
joanna newsom, franz ferdinand and the like, system of a down, rage against the machine, spoon, sonic youth, deerhoof, velvet underground, suicide, coldplay, tom waits, led zeppelin,

peter t
Hey Mike, for that rude comment on Miles Davis - Electric: I'll bash you with my electric shock you to heaven. Hope you meet him there only to shock you back!!!!!!

The Doors, The Ramones, Jeff Buckley (except for "Hallelujah"), Sonic Youth (except for "Teen Age Riot"), Daft Punk, The Rapture

sorry about that.

and almostcool, I'm amazed you aren't into pink floyd! Seems like with your appreciation of Godspeed, Sigur Ros, etc. the founders of Space Rock would be right up your alley. At least Wish You Were Here or something.

Oh god, I have to spill my guts here with early PAVEMENT. Slanted and Enchanted and Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain are decent, consistent albums, but I scratch my head till it bleeds whenever I see the most pretentious, selective music critics list them as the most important band of the 90's besides Radiohead. If they establsihed one of our modern notions of indie, fine -- they founded that idea that a band can be good with a completely pedestrian, funloving image instead of all this drama that we saw especially in the 80's. I actually think their later albums improved on this; even if their songwriting remained fairly simple and unsurprising at least they embellished it a bit more. I dunno, can anyone explain this to me? I'm starting to think that it's just dragged out Generation X nostalgia amongst the pitchfork crew in particular.

Only to say the latest, between indie bands: Animal Collective, Architecture in Helsinki, Page France, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah!, Fiery Furnaces, Patrick Wolf, Bright Eyes, The New Pornographers, Broken Social Scene and related, The Mountain Goats, Fly Pan Am, Castanets, Caribou, Cloud Cult, Decibully, I Love You But I've Chosen Darkness, Maquiladora, Mazarin, Of Montreal, Six Organs Of Admittance.
Then, though i loved very much that GYBE/Mogwai/EITS post-rock sound, only a few band doing it now really hit me, but most of them are for me boring and repetitive (e.g. God Is An Astronaut, Cue, Let Airplanes Circle Overhead)
And, of course, all those useless wave-like bands around.

overrated / actually crap: rolling stones, elliot smith, sonic youth, the magnetic fields, jeff buckley, cat power.

also, i'm real pissed i recently wasted money on antony and the johnsons, the fiery furnaces, clap your hands say yeah, and similar awful crap that's getting so much misleading praise.

The strokes, the white stripes, the yeah yeah yeahs, etc., are all the same crappy band writing the same song over and over, and i hope that i'm not the only person who hears this.

I will stand in solidarity with those saying Sonic Youth. Other than a couple tracks here and there that have some spastic energy (like "Nic Fit" from Dirty), I simply don't understand their appeal at all.

Also going to have to agree with Samuel below on Guided By Voices / Bob Pollard. I've heard about 3 or 4 (or 5 or 6, I can't even remember) albums by them and honestly felt like every song just blurred together. Do we need box sets upon box sets from them? I guess someone is buying them.

David -
I actually will go out on a limb and say bob dylan. he, like the beatles, has written a number of good songs, but does very little for me.

elliott smith, on the other hand, only realeased two really good albums (either/or + xo), the rest was pretty much just ho-hum, with a few good tracks here and there (most notably ms. missery).

wilco really is over-rated. good, but over-rated. not to mentioned loved by whole food shoppers everywhere.

"And lastly, but not least...line me up on the firing squad.....Sonic Youth. There you go. See fit to dismemeber me any way you deem appropriate."

Chris, they can line me up along side of you because, I completely agree.

Yeah, Mogwai is really over-rated.

I also want to add Mogwai. Never liked them and their new album doesn't change that one bit.

I think that people may have took me a bit to literally. All I meant to say is that the beatles have had the biggest influence on pop music of any band, ever. Sure they had their inspirations - Lennon was obssessed with Dyaln for a period - but they were simply pop geniuses and deserve this respect. Feel free to disagree with me of course.

I gotta agree with beastie boys. I think the omissions are interesting - no one hates Dylan, Eliott Smith, Wilco.. to name a few.

I really can't stand the beastie boys, or the beach boys for that matter. Pretty much anything with 'boys' in the name.

To the guy that said The Beatles did everything first, i recall reading that Paul McCartney said he loved the sound on Pet Sounds by the Beach Boys and tried to mimic it. So if anything maybe you should smarten up.

The Smiths, im sorry i don't get it.

I cant believe someone mentioned Robbie Williams here.

But disagree with Nick Cave, just recently bought an album called Lnd of Orpheus/Abbatoir Blues, and it is superb

oh go on, I'll say it
The White Stripes - basically a solo act, quite possibly the worst rock drummer ever, and what's with that whiny voice Jack has nowadays? - drivel

and The Happy Mondays - one good album (Bummed) followed by the critical acclaim for what amounts to watered-down sewage

and I've come across a good number of fans of The Mountain Goats recently, but what nonesense they are - too many lyrics, no tunes that I can discern - tripe

agree with many, here's what sticks out for me...

bonnie 'prince' billy
devendra banhart
clap your hands
the boy least likely to (but i still like architecture in helsinki...weird)
the beatles (i recognize their contribution to music at large, but i just don't care for their own songs)
yo la tengo (me and the girlfriend agree on this)
the hold steady

that's about all i can think of off the top of my head.

(sipping on hatorade)

as an aside to a suggested topic last week - 'best mixed tapes/cds' whatever ... there is a great site called '' that will do just that - generate a mixed tape to your suggestion. have fun. really varied music reviews too.

agreed - don't 'get' arcade fire, wolf parade, broken social scene, godspeed ... and plain just don't the much adored davendra, antony & the johnsons, xiu xiu. but post ok computer radiohead is the bomb. period. ditto on pil 2nd edition and flowers of romance, and um, velvet underground - are you kidding? the beatles - all '66-'70 releases, stones - beggars banquet era fo sho. gotta love the passion of your readers - this topic generated much discussion and i loved reading the comments!

The Choker

Nick Drake

Xiu Xiu

Robbie Williams

Fairly recent acts i just don't like M.I.A,Silver Mt Zion, Godspeed, Mono and that sort of post rock. Out of the sorta bigger acts I'm really not a fan of Kraftwerk, Nick Cave and Pink Floyd. Also why do pitchfork etc. get off on Kanye West???

I second Liz's dislike of Wilderness (though I do like some PiL) and Architecture In Helsinki.

Fiery furnaces, nirvana and some band called oasis... oh yes, and guns n' roses, I'm sure that even them can't stand their songs.
You probably haven't heard them but Heroes del silencio and Babasonicos are two popular rock bands in latinamerica that I hate and everybody else seems to love.

I can't believe you don't like led zeppelin and pink floyd.

David - I do own all of those beatles albums you mentioned (on vinyl as a matter of fact). I do enjoy them. But for the most part, I don't see the undying brillance behind them. It's good. I can see why people love them. I just don't share that opinion. Maybe I haven't had the time to appreciate them, but it did take me seven years of listing to "Loveless" to really get it.

Chris G
Most of this is just agreeing with people below. But mostly Sufjan. Do. Not. Get. It.

I agree with all the current alt. rock radio stuff posted below like White Stripes and The Strokes.

Don't understand how people can actually turn on the radio and STILL hear Soundgarden or Pearl Jam.

Old school stuff, I never got into R.E.M. Totally agree with the poster below on Beastie Boys and The Smiths. The Smiths had some great lyrics if you could get past the elevator music orchestration behind it.

And lastly, but not least...line me up on the firing squad.....Sonic Youth. There you go. See fit to dismemeber me any way you deem appropriate.

: k
Sufjan, post-'7 Swans' > those Icy Monkeys > Arcade Fire > Guns & their Roses > the Velvet Underground > Julian Casa-blah-blah and his leather jacket'ed pals with curls.


I agree with Aaron about Johnny Cash. Whenever I mention this I feel like I've lost credibility with the person who doesn't agree with me. His life was a lot less harsh than his songs lead you to believe. As for hard life/good music look into the lives and music of Africans Fela Kuti and Geoffrey Oreama.

Other crap out there... Sufjan (sounds like Christmas music), Davendra (listen to Marc Bolan first and then try and praise this fraud), Wilderness (not sure I liked P.I.L. the first time around either), Andrew Bird and Architecture in Helsinki (neither of these offend me, but I just think their borning and insignificant).
Taking the piss is fun!!

I think I get why folks love Radiohead but they've never done it, at all, for me. When OK Computer came out i couldn't leave my house without hearing it -- every friend had it (on repeat), all the coffeeshops and bars were playing it, i think it was being piped into the subway. After months of being asked repeatedly 'didn't I just love this record?' I eventually learned to communicate 'meh' telepathically!

Another sacred cow is the Beastie Boys... this is going to sound ridiculous but I simply cannot forgive them for License to Ill.

I hate Johnny Cash.

Arcade Fire, Art Brut, Bloc Party, The Boy Least Likely To, Bright Eyes, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, The Dismemberment Plan, The Eagles, The New Pornographers, Oasis, Okkervil River, The Ramones, The Sex Pistols, The Stone Roses, The Strokes, The White Stripes, Wolf Parade; and, lastly, I have, for some time, alternated between like and dislike (mostly just overall apathy) for The Rolling Stones, Sonic Youth, and Tortoise.

ok, now that someone was brave enough to mention joy division, who i actually love but can understand why people would not like... the band that annoys me the most that everyone seems to drool over that i just don't care for is....

The Smiths.

Morrissey makes me want to strangle someone and most Smiths records sound the same. Then of course, Morrissey, made some very dismissive comment about Liz Fraser once that just sealed it for me. One of those bands that is dropped off the planet tomorrow I would not weep at all. I have tried periodically for about 22 years to listen to them and actually care, but it never happens.

Indie bands I dislike:
1)Animal Collective (geeky, annoying indie-pop)
2)The Boy Least Likely To (see above)
3) Bright Eyes (boring, generic, depressive)
4) Interpol (no soul)
5) LCD Soundsystem (sucking the fun & sex appeal out of dance music to appeal to indie kids? Much better is the Juan Maclean in my opinion)
6) M83 (just plain boring)
7) Anything post-rock: I bought a Godspeed! album have listened to it several times, just don't get it.
8) The new B&S - his voice sounds awful this time around & his lyrics are extra prissy & pretentious. A few good songs.

That's all I can think of.. killed an hour at work.

On more thing..I'll be the first to point out a questionable call:
-Ripping on the Beatles (they did everything first so smarten up & buy Rubber Soul, Revolver, Sgt Peppers & most of all Abbey Road and get back to us)

The so-called laptop groups like Mum, Dntel, The Notwist, Clue To Kalo, etc. have always sounded rather inconsequential to me - though I love Ms. John Soda, Lali Puna, and B. Fleishmann. Go figure.

Oh, and I also don't get The Clash (overdramatic), Patti Smith (pretentious), Joy Division (overdramatic), Slint (pretentious), Underworld (simplistic), The Wrens (whiny), LCD Soundsystem (simplistic), or Patrick Wolf (whiny). Please don't hate me.

And the new YYY's album rocks!

Apparently this was a good question, because there are a lot of passionate (and fun to read) responses below.

I'm going to have to agree with lots of different ones below, but especially with Fred and dislike of "grunge" in general. I've never owned anything by Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, or really anyone from that era other than "In Utero" by Nirvana (which I still feel is their best). That whole genre just sorta escaped me.

This is going to seem sacreligious to some as well, but I've never really gotten into Joy Division. I like a few songs by them (Namely their more well-known songs like "Transmission" and "Love Will Tear Us Apart"), but vastly prefer New Order (other than their post Republic material). Like ebenoit below, I'm expecting a good heave of empty bottles in my direction now...

"Iron Man"

I saw a couple of bands below that I can't stand either : Pavement (though I quite like Stephen Malkmus), The Doors, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin...

I must say that I really don't understand what was the fuss about The Libertines in UK. They simply suck!

I'm a huge fan of Björk. But for some reasons, Medulla really gets on my nerve. Same thing for her last OST.

I can't stand MOR girlie music like Dido.

American hip hop in general, specially gangsta rap, bores me to hell. Hip hop album, for my ears, always seems too long and repetitive. Kanye West is the worst! (Exceptions : MF Doom, Beastie Boys, UK Garage, Missy, The Roots...)

I was in high school when the "grunge" movement started. For me, it lasted about two weeks before I found it boring and not very orginal. Still today, I tend to change the station when I hear a song by Pearl Jam or Soudgarden.

electric-era Miles Davis!
Back in 1994 when the whole post-rock thing took off in Chicago, everyone was naming 70's era Davis records as touchstones (actually they would've been more honest if they mentioned Weather Report, King Crimson and shitty prog rock but that's another rant). Aside from a few moments on Bitches Brew and In a Silent Way, this era for Davis was really a desperation to appeal to a larger rock crowd. He was becoming irrelevant and getting swallowed up by rock on the popular front and losing ground to free jazz on the innovation race. He was brilliant with that late 50's quintet and even the mid 60's quintet but in the 70's he went electric and it just sounded like shitty rock and music school funk. It's called fusion and we all know it sucks and it's reared it's ugly head again with the 3rd gen. of post-rockers that like to be called Instrumental Rock instead.

i would have to say sigur ros as well, their press reminds me of when cocteau twins were first out, and their music bores me to tears mostly. i liked them for about 3 months around their () album but, really always thought they were not all that amazing as people would lead you to believe. maybe it has to do with growing up with dreampop/shoegaze music, but they just have never struck me as something i that i can really get into and be passionate about.

and very quietly i will mutter down here... the cure. i always thought their b-sides were more interesting than any of their albums. i had a brief love affair with them, after about 5 years of friends trying to convince me that they were great, when i was about 17. but really, the first time i heard them i thought they were pretty awfful and i can barely make it through a record of theirs if put on now a days.
(let the bottle slinging begin)

Led Zeppelin for me too. Apart from a couple of quieter songs that I like, they're representative of a kind of bluesy rock music that I don't have any time for. Similarly, apart from their early stuff, I can live without The Who. However, I love Pink Floyd - especially their early 70s records like Meddle.

Another sacred cow that's never quite done it for me is My Bloody Valentine. I'm coming around to them slowly, and enjoy both their albums a lot, but still can't quite hear the same beauty in them that everybody else seems to.

More recently, didn't get along with Xiu Xiu and their Fabulous Muscles, nor The Fiery Furnaces' Blueberry Boat. I liked the latter at first then it just went on way too long and to the point of overkill. I like songs by both these artists, but would never buy another of their albums.

Other blind spots: Public Image Ltd, Guided by Voices

sigur ros and arcade fire and clap your hands all blow in my opinion.

By the way, Aaron: Good review of Jel - Soft Money. Love that album.

Pretty much everything Pitchfork loves :)

In all seriousness: Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Interpol, and Sigur Ros are a few that come to mind. Oh, and especially Explosions in the Sky. Saw them live and they were great, so I bought all their albums (even How Strange, Innocence). 2 months later, all were on ebay.

led zeppelin bores me to absolute tears, even more are the teenage boys who hail them as gods.

in that same vein, yes, the beatles, while good, have never shown that brilliant side to me. i own most of their albums on vinyl (hand-me-down), but, well, that's really about as far as it got. they write semi-decent pop songs, but, well, i just don't get it.

sebastien - i think the problem with sufjan is that his albums go on for ever and ever and ever. and i agree with you. i'm ready to be done with illinois after about 30 minutes, yet he keeps going for another 40...

oh, and post-ok computer-era radiohead (same with that 16 minute wilco song on a ghost is born). just because you like a band, doesn't mean you should attempt it. get with it may like aphex twin, but you are richard d james, nor will you ever be. kid a (and amnesiac) are both highly over rated albums for what actually came out of it. i am beginning to think that ok computer was the only worthwhile album radiohead ever put out.

oh plenty...but to start with:
The Stone Roses
Arctic Monkeys
The Rolling Stones
The Beatles' solo
The Strokes
Pink Floyd
anything Pete Doherty-related

Dungen. People have been going crazy about this band the last year or so. To me it just sounds horribly fake.

everybody's gonna shout me, but i have to admitt that i've never been able to listen to a sufjan stevens album from start to finnish: it tends to make my head spin.

Anthony & the johnsons, not my kind of thing, at all. It doesn't affect me.

And, most of all, i can't bear swanky bands like the white stripes, the strokes...

franz ferdinant, the strokes and similiar bands - i just don't get it.

some of those new whiney german indie bands you maybe don't (but maybe you do) know (for germans here: tomte, kettcar, and so on).

some music I never got very excited about: Pavement or Fennesz... and from older bands... not even trying I could get into The Doors, and regularly have a difficult time listening to Peter Gabriel (even tough sometimes I can)... and in a more recent time, can't find anything attractive about the Artic Monkeys.

Some very popular bands (at least at one time) that I never could get into were Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd. Don't get those two at all...

On a smaller level, I've never liked the Yeah Yeah Yeah's, and I really can't get into anything by the Fiery Furnaces (who seem to be quite a love them or hate them type band anyway).