Monday, 28 April 2014

REWIND: Massive Attack - 'Angel'

Over the last few days, while some of us have been celebrating the 20th anniversary of Blur's 'Parklife', certain (clueless) sections of the media have been using the occasion as an excuse to dismiss the entire Britpop era, which was of course the last great popular music movement, and the last scene to define a generation. These people make the ridiculous claim that Britpop was "damaging" and it "set music back". Hmmm, funny that, because I was just 9 when it happened, and all kids like me knew was chart music. Britpop's rise put other types of indie music in the spotlight, and opened the doors for other sorts of alternative music. Britpop's main bands may have been a bit basic, but there's no denying that their success provided a gateway for mainstream listeners to discover more challenging and interesting stuff. 

Without Britpop, I don't think Radiohead's 'Paranoid Android' would have been a massive chart hit, Spiritualized wouldn't have started enjoying Top 40 entries, and I don't think acts like Massive Attack would have been as popular. Although I already knew about the band (they came from nearby Bristol), I didn't begin listening o their music until I started hearing it on Radio 1's Evening Session. A show I listened to in order hear the Britpop bands. Like I said, stepping stones, gates and pathways. The striking 1998's 'Mezzanine' was the first Massive Attack album I ever bought, and the menacing 'Angel' opened that record.

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