Earlier this week Ottawa’s Bluesfest announced their lineup for the 2012 music festival, featuring a diverse group of headliners ranging from Iron Maiden and Alice Cooper to Snoop Dogg, LMFAO and Skillex. The crowning jewel in the lineup for me, is the appearance of I Mother Earth, who after a nearly 10-year hiatus from the music industry have just started getting back together and having a grand ole time making sound again.
Without question, IME was one of my favourite bands in the 90’s and through the years since their departure, their last studio album The Quicksilver Meat Dream has remained one of my go-to discs. I can’t put that record on without thinking back to my first introduction to it; a small, private CD release party in a dark Elgin St. basement pub. Essentially a handful of fans having a few wobblypops, hanging out with the members of the band as the sounds of the new record filled the air.
While that last record wasn’t a commercial success, it’s still one of my all-time favourite records from anyone, anywhere. Maybe it’s that emotional connection to the record that has helped keep it in my personal rotation over the last decade.
Ancient history aside, I lost my ever-loving mind when I read that IME would be playing Bluesfest. Much the same way I did when I saw they got back together for a couple shows for Canadian Music Week and released a new single independently through their website last month. There’s a real sense the guys are truly enjoying themselves and each other, and that they’re doing what they can without all the other industry nonsense that pushed them away a decade earlier - it’s hard for me not to be excited for them, and as a fan doing whatever I can to support ‘em.
I guess part of that support and emotional connection, We Got the Love, their first new track in a decade has absolutely dominated my playlists since it became available for download. It’s been a long time since I’ve fallen into the obsessive vortex of throwing one solitary song on repeat and not tiring of it… But it’s happened not once, but twice over the last few weeks.
It’s funny, back in March when Billy Corgan ranted at SXSW about the current state of the music industry, I felt the urge to lament about the death of the album as an art form and the great many discs and concept albums that have invaded my ears, heart and mind over the years… the types of albums that have become more and more rare in the single-ified industry propagated by the iTunes model…. And then I look at my top played du jour and along the top I have 2 tracks that are essentially orphans without albums that have dominated my headphones. In addition to the new IME single, Coheed and Cambria teased a new track from their next record with an acoustic performance of Sentry The Defiant, noting;
Instead of making you wait until the album is released, I thought I’d share my excitement for this song with you now. I decided with this piece to video document it’s creation. This is literally the first time I played the song through in its entirety. His name is Sentry The Defiant. - Claudio
Again, another track where the artist is connecting on a personal level with the fanbase… and for whatever reason, I just eat it up and throw it on repeat like I’m 14 all over again. So with that, I’m in no position to make any scathing commentary on the state of the music industry and the proliferation of 99-cent song poseurs and related album filler.
So that’s my snapshot for the moment. What are you listening to?