Genre-defying Bands Part 2: Thinking Plague

Posted in Avant-garde, Genre-defying by Keshav on August 31, 2010

According to Wikipedia, “Thinking Plague was a United States avant-rock group founded in 1982 by guitarist/composer, Mike Johnson, and bass guitarist/drummer, Bob Drake.” According to me, Thinking Plague is some of the most fucked up shit I’ve ever heard, and I mean that in a good way. I don’t think there’s much use in calling them “avant-rock” (a term which has debatable meaning), or defining them by any other genre label for that matter. They are simply too eclectic. When I’m trying to tell my friends about new bands I’ve discovered, I usually do it by comparing those bands to music they might have already heard. When I’m trying to tell my friends about Thinking Plague, I try to think of similar bands, fail, get tongue-tied, and usually start repeating permutations of the phrase “fucked up shit” (which I’m already guilty of doing once in this post). To me, this is a sign of something special in a band.

Thinking Plague
Thinking Plague

I have two albums by Thinking Plague; their third album, In This Life, and their fourth album, In Extremis. I wish I could talk about each song on each album in great detail, because they are all so different, both from each other, and from any other music I’ve heard. However, that would take up too much space, and it would be a little sketchy of me to post entire albums on this blog. So, I’m going to pick a couple songs from each album, and talk about them for a little bit. (more…)


Genre-defying Bands Part 1: The jazz-rock-funk-hip-hop-etc band

Posted in Funk, Genre-defying, Hip Hop, Jazz, Rock by Keshav on August 1, 2010

In the month or so that this blog has been active, I’ve been attempting on and off to come up with a good idea for a post. Alas, my efforts were in vain. The conclusion I’ve come to is that, like Hamlet, my tendency to over-think things can prevent me from actually getting anything done. So, I’ve decided that instead of agonizing over what to write about, I’m just going to write, and see what I end up talking about.

I have a problem with genres. When people make music that attempts to conform to x-genre, they really pigeonhole their music. While there are a lot of great bands that can be described with one genre label without doing them a grave disservice, I’ve come to believe that one characteristic many great bands share is their inability to be accurately described by a genre label. Maybe this has to do with my taste, as I gravitate towards things which are strange and different. But regardless, I’d like to share some bands which I think defy genre-categorization, and also happen to be awesome. For now, I’m going to talk about two genre-defying bands with a lot of similiraties, Rudder and Kneebody.

IMPORTANT: Listen to the sound clips, or you won’t get much out of this post.



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