Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Why I liked the Smashing Pumpkins

How do you approach music? Music to me is straight emotion. It doesn't control my feelings, but I see music in three-dimensional terms. I hope I'm not sounding flaky or weird, but then I really don't care. I love good music. I first heard S.P. in 1991 when I bought Gish based solely on a snippet I heard on a Rice University radion station. It grew on me, and I found a rare (at the time) single, I Am One which had Plume and Starla. This was on Halloween 1991 in Austin. The music was...mind-blowing. You know a song is a gem when you don't even have to hear the singing. B.C. nailed that concept hard, and I've rarely found it elsewhere (see Flaming Lips, Polyphonic Spree, early Cure, Richard D. James, any Rephlex). Do you remember Zero? Every winter I descend into a deep blue funk which lets up around Januaryish-Februaryish, and it gets to a point where I don't get out of bed and just pull the covers over my head until it's over. Anyway, this reminds me of the song Zero: Intoxicated with the madness, I'm in love with my sadness, bullshit fakers...she's the one for me, she's all I really need...want to go for a ride?" Now, I mentioned the Pumpkins didn't need singing, but Zero captured the essence of depression with both lyrics and music, along with depression's subtle nuances of narcissism and hopelessness. Billy Corgan, poet and a prophet, Billy Corgan, told me how to off it...


Blogger elasticwaistbandlady said...

I was just contemplating this morning writing about groups that I find over-rated.

Smashing Pumpkins is in the top 5 on my list. I have never liked even ONE song by them, which is surprising because I truly enjoy all genres, except Mexican mariachi music. When I'm extra moody, I listen to Jonatha Brooke, most notably her song, West Point. I love the line, 'I don't wanna die here, and nobody know'. That, my friend is a feel good song. If you go to her site at you can hear the song in its entirety. West Point is on her Plumb CD.

I loathe Smashing Pumpkins but that's okay we can still be friends.

2:13 PM  
Blogger elasticwaistbandlady said...

Oddly enough, ZERO was playing on my XM Radio when I got in the truck this morning, and I immediately thought about you! In all fairness their songs have aged well and don't seem out of date. At the bank their monitor screen was flashing a news story about Billy Corgan reforming Smashing Pumpkins, did you hear that? Although didn't some of them move onto Perfect Circle? I LOVED that CD, Nom de Mer.

So, to sum it up, in 1991 I just passed my punk/electronica phase and was listening to Sonic Youth, King Missile, Nirvana, The Cult, Pearl Jam, Queensryche, Thrill Kill Kult, Faith No More (I loved them since their CD Angel Dust and was a little disappointed when they hit the big time with EPIC, and I wore out my KLF CD playing it constantly. Oh yeah, I also carry at least one Chicago CD with me always.

2:02 PM  
Blogger Pisces Iscariot said...

Try The Mars Volta for a real out-there ride.
You may not like it but it sure gets under the skin.

8:09 PM  

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