Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Following Steelydanodyne's lead, it's high time I fessed up to something. In the late 80's I was a card carrying fan of one of the most ridiculously stylish bands to ever walk the planet: The Blue Nile. Beginning in 1984, they released a string of critically adored/commercially ignored albums filled with some of the most sublime synth pop ever put on tape. We're talking thick "John Taylor-esque" basslines, Electronic Kurzweill strings, Reich-like guitar mantras and Processed Orchestra Hits that sound like they could have been lifted straight off of "The Terminator" soundtrack, all in service to lyrics that somehow managed to balance trembling emotions with a cool, graceful reserve. Their first two albums ( A Walk Across the Rooftops and Hats) are as goofily melodramatic and heartbreakingly aspirational as synthpop ever got, a prime example of what Clement Greenberg called "The All Out Try," that rare artistic attempt that asks for all or nothing.
So there, I said it. There's no turning back.
May the trucker hat wearing gods of indy hipsterism have mercy on my soul.