How NOT to write about music – 44. The Young Gods

the young gods

I’ve always hated choice.

You follow one pathway, myriad others close down, and not always immediately.

When I arrived at Melody Maker, tail end of 1988, some would argue the paper’s halcyon days had already been and gone. Some would argue that my very arrival at the paper would bring about their imminent demise. The days of Swans, Pixies, The Young Gods and My Bloody Valentine. The arsequake league. The music that through its focus on low-end bass frequencies and malevolent, whispered acid grooves – its magical use of smoke, mirrors, warp sampling and volume – caused the nether regions of the body to wobble uncontrollably. Very male.

There was this, but I am not sure where this fits in with your time scale.

There was this, but surely this came at the tail-end of all the goodness?

By tail-end, all I mean is that somewhere along the line I stopped listening so closely.

I have no idea how different my life would have been if I had followed the paths of those who went (briefly) before me, continued sauntering down the fluid grooves and fertile, fecund sampling of Switzerland’s The Young Gods – maybe I too would have ended up locked, lost within the stifling miasma of NiN (one direction), post-rock nothingness (direction two), U2’s belching guitar drone (direction three) or maybe I would have taken on a happy daze and gone wafting down every last groovy hate fuck dance fest I could delirium dance my way through (four direction). Been a slave to Audioslave or dyed my pubes black.

Maybe I wouldn’t have.

Maybe I would be in precisely the same spot as I find myself in now.

But I do know that I shut down some vibrant enticing illuminating possibilities by refusing to engage directly with my new colleagues’ critical consensus – however magnificently argued, however richly flourished and explained – and by trying to strike out to find my own pathways. Fuckers.

I’ve always hated choice.

This one sounds like Soundgarden, but with a deep vein thrum basis.

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