Grizzly Bear – Shields (2012, Warp)

The thing I really hate in (modern) indie singers is the idea that they’re sounding soulful because they’re using a ‘quiet’ voice. They’re not screaming, shouting or grunting, just lightly singing – it’s more of a moan, really – probably with their eyes closed. This is what seems to count for ‘soul’ in much modern indie music – a barely ushered sound.

It is the sound of boredom, of tedium, of emotionless gimboids whining their way around life, because to be angry, to be sad, to be anything would break the tedium of kitch consumer capitalism, of the dreamy state that doesn’t have to deal with how fucked up things are. You can buy a nicely coloured silicone spatula from than vaguely French/Danish/Swedish store, so you don’t have to contemplate on how shitty things really are. Oh Ernold Same, his life stays the same. It’s a sound that Damon Albarn has descended into, in lieu of some idea that he sounds mournful. Just sounds fucking bored and boring to me.

And this, at it’s heart, is my biggest problem with modern indie. Everybody involved in it, in some sort of post-Morrissey, post-Thom Yorke moan, has lost all interest in what the fuck they’re playing. Just close your eyes and user forth a moan and it’ll be like having a soul, you don’t have to have a soul.

It even transpire’s to the instruments, where they’re barely touched. Oh, FUCK OFF AND HIT SOMETHING, YOU ARSEHOLES. Feel something apart from TEDIUM.


I bought Grizzly Bear’s Shields after hearing a technical part of a song of theirs in a pub and thinking it sounded interesting, and quite exciting. When I dabbled with their stuff online, I thought maybe I need to listen to a whole album. Having got the whole album, I’m stupified to whatever I found interesting.

Some people might call this progressive indie, I’d call it boring as fuck.


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