Honey, I’m Home!

No, I wasn’t raptured — big surprise there, eh? — I spent the weekend in Nashville, visiting family and friends. But now I’m back, although with a computer that’s acting hinky, so I’ll put forth a brief proposition before I head off to IT this morning.

I contend that progressive rock owes much to a high Modernist aesthetic (e.g., emphasis on complexity for its own sake, and the potential paradox of high culture [classical music] in a popular format), while garage rock, with its emphasis on naivete and emotional authenticity verging on primitivism, is representative of the kind of Romanticism presented in, say, Wordsworth’s preface to the the second ed. of Lyrical Ballads.

Your thoughts?

About profmondo

Dad, husband, mostly free individual, medievalist, writer, and drummer. "Gladly wolde he lerne and gladly teche."
This entry was posted in Culture, Literature, Music. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Honey, I’m Home!

  1. MikeC says:

    This reminds me of the “Caveman vs. Astronauts” discussion from the TV series Angel, which dealt in the visceral vs. the intellectual.

    Also reminds me of a boss I had who is a devotee of ProgRock, and hosted a ProgRock radio show. He was a guy who enjoyed the complicatedness of PR, and did his best to make me understand it. It was perhaps beyond me.

    Ironically, this boss had a simple saying for the problems one encounters when they attempt to overcomplicate things, and thus make trouble for themselves: “You are stepping on your own dick.”

    So, I think ProgRockers, while enjoying the complicatedness of PR, still maintain a connection with visceral truth, and can throw down in a simple thrash-sound when necessary. While not a huge YES fan, I can appreciate their 80s top-forty hit “Owner of a Lonely Heart” which is pretty visceral. I’m unsure if Anthrax could do a ProgRock album if their lives depended on it.

    Yes, I know all my references are very very dated. Music really isn’t that important to me these days, but ProfM piqued my interest today.

  2. nightfly says:

    Hmmm… I like Yes, and the Ramones. I hadn’t stopped to consider the ramifications. I’m in trouble now, aren’t I?

    • profmondo says:

      Naah — no trouble at all. I actually enjoy prog, metal, garage, punk, 50s/60s country… ultimately, the old jazzman was right: the only two kinds of music are good and bad. I just find the aesthetic assumptions behind a given genre interesting.

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