Bubble Gum Indie.
Recently, a lot of lamestream wannabe alts have asked me, "Carles, have u heard the song PUMPED UP KICKS by Foster the People?" I have listened to the song. It seems 'catchy', 'indie', 'trendy', 'lame', 'kewl', 'fun', and the type of song that you'd imagine a group of suburban girls driving around suburbia blasting while they pour vodka into their Sonic slushies. It is interesting to think about how a song that is 'catchy' in an 'indie' kind of way inspires resentment, as opposed 2 the 'we so excited' vibes that a song would have inspired 2-10 years ago.
Foster the People's song is a manufactured 'indie' masterpiece. Vocal FX on some cool sounding voice. Sweet 'dancey' bassline. Synthiness. Whistling. Such likable music that perfectly executes the trendy indie aesthetic that feels like it was created 2 be in some sort of car/beer commercial. We can just roll our eyes and think 'Oh God. One of these songs again? Go get a record deal from a mainstream record label already.'
Sorta want 2 reflect on the greatest bubblegum indie songs ever written. Many different artists brought bubblegum indie mp3s to market at different times. Sorta wonder how their careers would have turned out differently if they came around 3 years earlier/later...
What if MGMT's "KIDS" had come out in 2011? Would they be able to morph into an intriguing 'indie' buzzband. When analyzing their 'success' in the context of a bubblegum indie MP3 that propelled them to super-mindie stardom, it is easier to understand their 'drastic change in direction' for their second album, just to attempt to get rid of some of the entry-level fans who 'liked' them 4 the 'wrong reasons.'
Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros hit song "Home" has become the anthem of numerous commercials. A great boy-girl duet with whistling, then u find out the band looks like some free-spirited hippie cult. Like many bubblegum indie mp3s, it is a great one to put on a mix CD for an entry-leveler that u r trying to date so that they can project 'personal meaning' on to the song.
Remember when Passion Pit's "Sleepyhead" brought found a way to turn sample-based, falsetto-wave music into bubblegum indie? I wonder what their next album is going to sound like. Hopefully they go more mainstream and P4k pans them just to maintain 'indie alt authenticity.' I am not familiar with Passion Pits formative years. Does n e 1 know where they came from?
Peter Bjorn & John's "Young Folks" is easily one of the greatest whistle-based songs ever written, even outside of the indie genre. Back in the day, even authentic alts got really excited abt bubble gum indie, because it represented 'perfect pop music.' We wondered why mainstreamers didn't listen to this perfect music... eventually they discovered it. They 'totally ruined it', so now we get to resent any indiesque song that is too bubblegummy.
I remember when the 'hipster song with the whistling' meme went moderately viral.
I guess maybe that's what mainstreamers searching 4... They are searching for 'new trendy music' that has 'alternative' and/or 'hipster' leanings... They are searching 4 a sound that embodies the spirit of the modern search for music now that 'online social music discovery' has steered them towards music-festival-wave indie music.
It was also interesting that the Arcade Fire opted 2 write their bubble gum indie anthem on their latest album. "Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)" was a song that they didn't really need to write, but it probably helped them to win their Grammy, because it was the song that was easiest to 'identify with' for a mainstreamer. The Arcade Fire generally seem to want to try to build authentic, consistent aesthetics, but maybe some1 told them 'We need a whimsical pop song!' Oh Regine...
The concept of bubble gum indie isn't 'groundbreaking', 'new' or 'innovative. I just wonder what I would do if I started a buzzband. Would I try to get a debut on Gorilla Vs Bear, then attempt to get 'Best New Musicked' on Pitchfork, or would I just write a bubblegum indie mp3 that attracted major label interest? It seems like u would make more money with the Bubble Gum Indie hit route, and reach more ppl, but at the same time, u would basically exist as a parody of a buzzband, even if u got to go on tour and bang tons of entry-level alts on the road just the same. If ur band was 'too authentic', you would probably end up hooking up with more crusty-ish girls, if ur into that.
Do u <3 or h8 bubble gum indie?
What is the greatest bubblegum indie anthem of all time?
Do u feel disappointed when some1 who u thought was authentic listens 2 bubble gum indie and says it is 'good/buzzworthy'?
Are any bands 'guilty' of just writing bubblegum indie songs over and over again?
Do u feel bad when a band tries 2 write bubgumindie and they fail anyways?
Is a bubble gum indie hit the only way that chillwave/lofi can go mnstrm?
I think I'm just going 2 go giggle while I watch this video of Foster the People doing a super lame performance of "Pumped Up Kicks" at Lollapalooza while so many indiemainstreamers 'go crazie' 4 the song. They totally 'look like a buzzband' and 'sound like a buzzband', therefore, they 'must be a buzzband.' Right?
I rlly, rlly resent any bubble gum indie song that was written after 2k_...