The 10-minute review – 19: 77.78

The intersection. That is all I am interested in, mostly.

tanto minus discere ad nos scimus

Simon Reynolds once wrote that I wrote that “I am not interested in finding out WHY something is good, all I want to know is the WHERE”. This is both reductionist and a little too meta for this early in the day. It was the 1980s. I was already fed up with those who use criticism as an excuse to parade their intelligence; those who would use learning as a bragging exercise but do not understand the need for it beyond that. I was frustrated by exclusion (how could I not be, me with my High Church of England upbringing?). Oddly, I was not attracted by the ritual(s), or crucially did not believe myself to be. So, no Latin masses when it comes to declaiming your love for Harry Potter or The Smiths, unless you find it entertaining, (Do you find it entertaining? Oh, I am so conflicted.)

I like new Heavenly signings 77.78 because they remind me of equally obscure two-decades-past Chicago (I think) band The Webb Brothers and High Llamas and other stuff white male critics love, not straying even an inch from their comfort zone. Times change, fashions change. Now it’s way more acceptable for WMMC to profess undying love for Cardi and Janelle than admit to a fondness for Rickenbacker riffs but does that border on cultural (if not gender) appropriation? Oh Bangs, I am so conflicted.

I do not like to listen to 77.78 in isolation (as I am attempting to do right now) – way too much sweetener in the Dr Pepper there, Dougie! – but in the context of THE LIST, the invisible playlist, the greatest music of May 2018, they slot straight in with their smoothed-out harmonies and whispers of brass and Pet Shop Boys binge listening sessions.

The intersection is all I am interested in, mainly.

This is the song available on YouTube but it is not the best (not to self: qualify) song on the album Jellies. That honour falls to the laboured and intransigent (note to self: justify use of negatively-connotated words as compliments) ‘E.S.T.W.D.’

As the Romans had it, tanto minus discere ad nos scimus.


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