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With a title like Brutalism, you could be forgiven for expecting a sonic assault from Idles. Despite what the name of the album might suggest, the Bristol five piece’s debut album doesn’t dip its toes into the hardcore and metal genres. Instead, the title seems to be in reference to subject matter, which deals with the current state of the country.
It’s hard to quantify the impact that Nirvana’s Nevermind album had on the musical landscape. My knowledge of popular genres and the time periods they belong to is fairly standard and if I hear a song, I can probably nail the decade it was produced on based on the tone of the instruments used. Nevermind and the grunge movement that sprung up from the album’s release represents an anomaly, and that’s precisely what makes it so important.
Almost exactly three and a half minutes into Runaways, the first track on XTC’s magnum opus English Settlement, the guitars become hushed and lone piano notes drop as if into oblivion. It’s one of many moments of sheer brilliance that litter all of the fifteen songs on the record. They act as lily pads in ponds of circling 12-string guitars, off kilter drum patterns and pan-optic lyrics.
During the summer between leaving college and heading to university, I ended up taking a paper round out of boredom and desperation for money. That lackadaisical summer was spent pedalling around Leicester, delivering newspapers and exploring my taste in music for the first time ever. The biggest revelation was that I enjoyed rap and hip-hop, which was born from my discovery of an up and coming artist called Mac Miller.
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