Jeff Rosenstock is kinda trendy already, which I find slightly annoying as I just listened to the music for the first time and hoped to be a bit ahead of curve.
His new album POST- is worthy of the attention though, so I shall rise above my societal annoyances of the internet. I’ve been around blogs long enough to know that with music especially, the writers generally aren’t that knowledgeable about instrumental music and there is a whole lot of group-think out there – but I will admit, when the hype comes, it’s almost never wrong. Maybe only wrong in the sense that they are missing so much else because it didn’t come via a hip publicist.
POST- is endorphined-up enough for DIY-scene approval, yet listenable for the rest of us, which is a tough act to balance. With POST-, I can sit here and listen to all of it without fighting the urge to do something, anything else. It started out being enjoyable and it just never stopped. It’s calming yet rocks hard, and that’s a special type of art that calms someone down. Think about that. It actually made someone’s body feel physically better than it did before it heard the music.
So I have this brewing love/hate affair with the DIY world. I dont go to the shows really, but I lurk, and I really like a lot of the bands. The music is sophisticated and instrumentally challenging, so for that alone I love it. People are out there in the world trying to understand music that doesn’t easily please their ears in the scientific or formulaic way they are used to, asking themselves why it is doing what it is doing – which is usually breaking a music rule to play a note or chord that isn’t quite right – but isn’t quite wrong either.
And this music scene support each other’s art and lifestyles and puts on shows or opens venues in weird places. They share. Most of them hate jambands, but we’re very much the same. They are us 15 years ago, before we got lost and our bands started to suck.
I am an outsider to this world, but I have a pseudo-record label that loses money, I’ve made an album on vinyl, I love writing for blogs for free rather than getting paid and having an editor who cares about traffic, and I love counterculture in how it defines generations. I crave knowing about other people with hobbies like these. This is the kind of stuff POST- got me thinking about. The music feels like you want to socialize with people who understand your deepest cut favorites and your random Gary Numan references. It’s inviting and snobby, like a venue doesn’t just say, “no thanks” to a band looking for gig there. It’s snobby like the venue that replies, “we won’t be having any shows by your band ever.”
It’s really the only thing going today that resembles a counterculture or underground music scene, and that’s more than I can say for the jam scene. We the jam crowd became media-craving mainstream music playing by the rules. And we have kids and good jobs and most of us lived past 35. We’re not as rock n roll as we thought.
Anyway, sorry Jeff Rosenstock. It’s so annoying to get a review that’s really just a writer stroking his or her ego and not giving the music its due, but I hope the stream of conscious describes the music. I like how you play your chords, which I believe is a good way to know if you can get along with someone. So I trust you and I like you. This album is edgy enough to be cool, but doesn’t care enough that it allows itself to be fun. Great job on a great album.
I’d love to catch up for an interview at some point. Be safe out there Jeff. The world is a tough place, so surround yourself with nice people who aren’t no gig ever pretentious.
Jeff Rosenstock’s POST- is the first album I like this year and will always be the first music discussed on this blog.