Back in the day, you were either under the shining disco ball wearing platforms, or you were throwing beer cans and milkshakes at the people who were. Now, it's safe to say...*checks if coast is clear*...It's safe to say that disco is pretty much everywhere. It's in your headphones, probably in your iTunes, and definitely on the radio. I know, I know, you're saying "But what do you mean we're still listening to disco?!" Maybe it's not disco exactly. But the emergence of this electro-pop, synth-slaved, dance-prog is all over the place. What I'm trying to say is you can thank your funky disco forefathers for paving the way for these up-and-coming artists to do what they do best: make us move.
Let's talk primal disco for a brief minute. What does the group Chic have in common with Neon Indian? The first group is comprised of a band, while the other is ultimately a guy doing stuff on his keyboard. Let's take "What About Me" by Chic, and "Street Level" by Neon Indian. Listen to the Chic song first You listened? No, really, did you listen to both? It's fine, I can wait. Okay, you're done? Now tell me what the difference is. Hard to come up with a lot of differences besides the year released, and the technology now available, right? But that's because music today is becoming more and more influenced by the stuff our parents were listening to. And parents, guess whatyour kids are listening to music based off the stuff YOU jammed out to! Both songs being compared share this feathery groove, backed by a consistent rhythm. The quality level for dance on both scores are at an all-time high. The piano plays a crucial role in the harmony of "What About Me" and keeping it "pretty," while the bass, guitars, and drums create the dance dynamic that has been mimicked for years. The drummer would point to the bassist, click his sticks and the song would begin. Thumps thick as tar would start pounding from the amps, and the kick drum would stay on the one and three for security. It's in this moment that people usually start doing the dance for Saturday Night Fever. Neon Indian recreates that vibe, that atmosphere, by doing, well, the same thing. It's just a modern version of it.
Earlier, at our Baeble office, we were discussing how a huge chunk of Led Zeppelin (Zep one) is all blues rip-offs. Which they are, don't even try to argue. But think of the critical acclaim Zep one received...We're talking worldwide love here. Now, let's do that thing again where I give you two songs, and you try to tell me the difference. The first, "Lucky Star" by Madonna and the second, "Clearest Blue" by CHVRCHES. Oh? What's that? No difference? Told ya. Only thing I could argue is that one is a clear cut classic, and the other is on its way to becoming the same. The climactic buildup of sounds graced by a beautiful female voice create the perfect temperature for you to take off that jacket, and start whipping your hair and body around on the dance floor. There's this studded energy in both tracks. Just as in the Madonna song, and the Chic song, CHVRCHES make you want to shake that thing your momma gave you. It's the pulse of the music, that bouncethat somehow maintains solid musical caricature while making you feel the urge to lose your shit at the same time.
That Chic song was from 1979 and Madonna from '83. Both the songs by Neon Indian and CHVRCHES, are from 2015. Let's just call it millennial disco. Instead of throwing milkshakes at the platform wearing Travolta-esque, we now laugh at the curly mustached hipsters with floral shirts who press pads all day and call it music. Except, it IS music. Damn good music, at that. And the inspiration for this music is coming from some of the greatest stuff ever madein the past. I mean, I know there are some Earth, Wind and Fire seeds carefully planted in the lush petals of Taylor Swift and Adele's music. Just listen closely and you'll hear it too. With that being said, tonight, we'll be dancing yeeaahh...