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98. The Strokes – The Modern Age



As the first super-hyped band of the decade, the backlash against The Strokes was beginning to build even before this, their debut single, was released. So when The Modern Age turned out to be a wholesale pilfering of the Velvets’ garage rock jangle, it was easier to dismiss them as skinny-jeaned Lou Reed fanboys who’d been to Swiss finishing school than to actually acknowledge that their records sounded pretty goddamn cool. Now, however, with enough distance from both the NME hyperbole and the events of September 11 that made a gang of super-confident New Yorkers seem suddenly slightly distasteful (and which forced them to change the tracklisting of their debut LP), Julian Casablancas’ slack-jawed drawl and Gordon Rafael’s dry production is a great example of cool kids knowing they’re cool, and showing us they’re cool while we look on with a combination of respect and envy. They’d go on to have more challenging, energetic songs, but never any as effortless as this.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. Will H permalink
    18/09/2009 4:57 pm

    As this is my favourite Strokes song, I can’t work out if that means there will be more to come in the list or whether their best is only jsut good enough for this list?

  2. Sam permalink*
    19/09/2009 1:06 am

    Well I have a strict no-spoilers policy, so you’ll just have to stay tuned to see if Casablancas and co get another mention, or whether I just reckon that most of the Strokes’ tunes haven’t weathered so well…

  3. James W permalink
    02/10/2009 10:35 am

    See, if you like the Strokes you might as well just go back and listen to Television’s first two albums, which are infinitely better.

  4. Marky Mark permalink
    26/05/2011 9:30 pm

    Looking at your picks, I can’t help but think you’re trying too hard. Maybe you could try to enjoy music instead of playing “cooler than thou” with unlistenable garbage like LCD Crapsystem and Goldfartt.

  5. Sam permalink*
    30/05/2011 6:10 pm

    Thanks for your input, Marky Mark. Unfortunately you’re 18 months late. Your puns are wonderful though. Many congratulations on them.

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