Sep 19, 2013

Genres are musical stereotypes. Failure, from a band standpoint, comes from merely photocopying, sticking the “genre” face down on the platen, hitting the button, and making the mistake of being ignorant of the fact there are people with long memories looking over your shoulder, ready to call you out. (Power pop and pop punk bands are particularly egregious.) Genre failure, from a music critic standpoint, is an incipient laziness to interact with the music that’s actually being played. Case in point: Steve Adamyk Band, yeah, they’re poppy, they’re powerful, but there’s oh so much more at play than “skinny ties of the mind.” Because Steve Adamyk makes songs that may sound like glass—they sound so effortless, so easy, so transparent, falsely appearing to be brittle when punched—until you (if you’re a music reviewer or a deep listener) hear the wreckage from so many other bands still trying to pull this style of music off and shitting not only their pants, but into your ears. The Steve Adamyk Band plays diamond rock—it’s all cut, carats, and clarity. It’s the thing that does the smashing, not the smashed thing. That’s a world of difference. If John Peel were still alive, he may have thought twice about putting an Undertones song title on his headstone. (If punks can’t blaspheme, who can?)

 –todd (Hosehead)