Lest we forget the plight of our white guys with guitars.
The poor fellas are suffering, losing steady ground to a music culture that embraces manufactured pop over stringed instruments. Even a national institution like The Smashing Pumpkins could only shift 54,000 units of their new album Oceania this week, which in a country comprised of more that 300 million American consumers, is pretty poor in terms of sales numbers.
Britain―a country that coined all modern perceptions of rock 'n' roll―has been the worst offender of neglecting alternative music. If ever we needed proof of that then just look at last week's massive Radio 1's Hackney Weekend, where famous generic urban pop stars (you know, the type that readily lend their voices to crappy animated kids films at the drop of a hat) dominated the event, while the few alternative acts on the bill looked massively out of place. Ten years ago such a thing would have been unthinkable.
One indie white band playing at Hackney Weekend was south London's The Maccabees. Even though the biblical name of the band may indicate a Christian rock affiliation, The Maccabees are truly British in that they don't do God, and the band's title is an ironic feature as many of their songs have atheistic undertones, ridiculing the nature of organised religion. The irony is further heightened by the actuality that The Maccabees' sound feels very similar to Christian rock in some ways.
Went Away is the latest single taken from the band's third album, Given to the Wild. Even though the album charted in the Top 5 on release, it's hard not to think that music of this nature would have made much greater impact in past years.