21st June - Summer Solstice - World Music Day, a French invention!
What? Music? Myuzik? (and other variations...)
And so I went to listen to a band on the day after WMD - (Weapons of Mass Destruction). Their name was Urban Reflections,. Yessir, you got that right, Urban-fucking-Reflections! They reflected what I don't know. Music? Myuzik? They were WMD (as in definition given in brackets above) is all I can say.
They destroyed whatever musical sensibilities I had. They also had the nerve to do stuff by Bill Withers, Roberta Flack, even Doobie-friggin-Brothers, and make it all sound like bad rock music played on an unreleased album which Joe Satriani/Jon Bon Jovi/Steve Vai will never make. I mean it takes a lot of guts to make soul and funk music sound like bullshit electric guitar-rock coupled with power drumming that goes nowhere.
Who are these musicians (and a host of others like them)? Have they actually paid any musical dues? Or are they the scions of indulgent Bengali families who feel that if their ward plays music it should be financed regardless and without question as it is the appropriate Bengali thing to do? They have no funk in them and yet they want to do that backbeat. They have no blues in them and yet they want to be seen doing 12-bar variations. They have well-fed, rotund Bengali paunches on them and look like mama's milk is still dribbling from the corners of their mouths. They only want to impress with their electronic gadgetry and leave their audience stunned with their skills. Skill, not talent, skill. O lord, give me a break!
If anything, I am most critical of such musicians. They have innate talent, but lack exposure, and yet make up for it by overconfidence. They re the kind who release an album because its the done thing, not because they have music on offer. They have myuzik on offer really. Sometimes their solos sound like muzak...
This is a rant about the so-called modern, contemporary bands in Calcutta. But if you look carefully it's about bands all over India. But because Calcutta is the erstwhile, and still-while capital of culture in this country, I write of this city. And if you want my rant on Bengali Rock - (which too does not exist) - go here!
Happy Music Day folks! I hope you get the music you deserve just like the government you elected. (Just in case you do happen to live in a country which has reasonably free and fair elections.)