Something happened in the '90s. I guess as a reaction to grunge, slacker-rock bands like the Refreshments made bank. The songs should have been sad -- they were about alcoholism, service economy-induced unemployment, and dysfunctional relationships. But things were going so well in the nineties that if you fucked up it must have been your fault, you know?
Or at least that's what it seems like to me. Really, the most salient thing I remember about the nineties are Power Rangers.
But now that the economy's in the shitter for most everybody and someone could set off a suicide bomb at any minute, it's been really easy for Roger Clyne's sunny defeatism to morph into detached, hipster despair.
Fortunately, The Successful Failures are here to remind us what slackers should sound like.
And it doesn't involve synthesizers or glorifying Brooklyn. This is pure Americana-inflected punk.
The opening track, "How People Start Sentences" is the most clever song I've heard this year. And that ain't nothing, considering how I just gushed about a recent Paul Sanchez album and Roger Clyne is a foundational musician for this blog. Other highlights are "The Rise of China," and "Clifton Mills."
This is great stuff. I hope I can make it to their concert here in the city in a couple of weeks.
The Successful Failures-- Official, Facebook