411 Music Fact or Fiction 05.02.14: Bill O'Reilly Complains, News At 11
Posted by Joseph Lee on 05.02.2014
Are we excited for Kendrick Lamar's upcoming album? Do we care that Guns N' Roses are working on a new album? Is Beyonce a bad role model? 411's Daniel Wilcox and Sean Garmer debate these topics and more!
Welcome to another edition of Fact or Fiction: Music. I'm your host, Joseph Lee.
This week we have Daniel Wilcox against Sean Garmer
Sean Garmer: FACT. I loved the crap out of Kendrick Lamar's last album. I couldn't get Poetic Justice and Swimming Pools out of my head for a while when the album first came out, that's how much I enjoyed it. I definitely want to see what Kendrick Lamar has up his sleeve for his next album. This is coming from someone that isn't huge on rap too.
Daniel Wilcox: FICTION. Like most, I really enjoyed Kendrick's previous record. In my last appearance in Music Fact or Fiction I answered a question regarding whether Lamar was robbed at the Grammies and it's certainly arguable than that record deserved more recognition than it got at that particular awards show. With all that said, an artist going back into the studio isn't something I get exciting about, unless it's one of my favourite artists who maybe haven't done anything for a while. We all know how the music industry can work, with records being put on hold for long periods of time, artists chopping and changing in terms of when their records are coming and what form they take. This is especially true in the world of hip hop. So while I'm anticipating a new Kendrick Lamar release, it's not something that I'm going to be getting worked up about until we're much nearer the release. Apart from anything else, there's plenty of great hip hop on offer to get excited about without looking too far into the future.
Sean Garmer: FACT. Most of these artists I like so for me this would be something I'd want to watch. Mariah Carey, Pharrell, Rascall Flatts, Sara Bareilles, Train, Philip Phillips, Ed Sheeran, OneRepublic, Jason Mraz, Usher, Aloe Blacc and Neon Trees that's damn good lineup (and that's with me leaving the artists I don't care for out.) I don't live in New York, but if you are a fan of any of these bands the concert series is free. So, I guess it's good just on the basis that it costs you nothing to go try to see one or several of these artists perform. Probably does suck if you aren't a big pop music fan though, as that's pretty much the genre for almost everyone on the list.
Daniel Wilcox: FICTION. In comparison to what? I live outside of the United States so this Summer Series isn't something I'm familiar with. I have a pretty good knowledge of US festivals but this isn't something that's ever been on my radar. So these are just televised early morning concerts? And you have to get there for 6am to see this live? Um, OK. There's a couple of good acts there, and I suppose landing Mariah Carey is something of a coup. Pharrell is obviously the man of the moment so again, that's a solid booking. Usher has been quiet lately so I suppose that's another solid booking even if it doesn't appeal to my tastes. Out of the whole lot, the only acts that I can honestly say I'd enjoy would be Ed Sheeran, who is must-see, Fall Out Boy, Jason Mraz and Neon Trees, but there's are hardly exciting bookings. If you want an exciting series of summer concerts, check out Ibiza Rocks which this year features the likes of Haim, Bastille, Jake Bugg, Madness, Chloe Howl, Lily Allen, The 1975, Ed Sheeran, Nas, Tinie Tempah and the Kaiser Chiefs.
Sean Garmer: FICTION. Slayer is the only "Big 4" Thrash band I don't like, but just listening to the song on it's own. I can't escape the fact that it sounds a lot like Metallica's Damage Inc. and even part of it sounds like a harder version of the beginning of St. Anger, why the hell would you decide to take anything from that riff? Hell, the vocalist (which is the main reason I can't stand the band) is trying to sound like James Hetfield at times too. The instrumentation is great and the solo is pretty awesome in the middle of the song, but that doesn't take away from the fact that I just don't like this song at all.
Daniel Wilcox: FACT. Not being funny or awkward guys, but you're asking the wrong man here. I'm a fan of a lot of forms of metal, always have been and always will be, but despite numerous attempts I have never been able to get into Slayer. Never have been and likely never will. Obviously I gave this song a couple of listens and personally I don't think it's too bad – it's certainly packed full of energy and it's great to hear that the band is going to continue to keep rocking following the death of Jeff Hanneman. And I'm among the listeners that have noticed the similarities between some of the riffs used in "Implode" and Metallica's classic track "Damage Inc" but that type of thing doesn't seem to bother me as much as it does others. The lack of prominent drum work is noticeable but not necessarily a great detriment. The song still chugs along nicely with those aggressive guitars and the track highlights the progressive influence of the genre. Losing Hanneman was a huge loss to the band, and the firing of Dave Lombardo could have meant the end for the band but this tracks shows that the band can still please with their music. Upon visiting various message boards and fan forms, the response to the track is somewhat mixed, but I found it an enjoyable listen so I'll call this a FACT.
Daniel Wilcox: FICTION. You could copy and paste parts of my answer to the Kendrick Lamar question and put them here but let's elaborate a bit. People slated Chinese Democracy because it was the cool thing to do. I was guilty of not giving the record much of a chance initially but in hindsight, it's not a bad little record with some pretty good songs on. Is it on the level of Appetite for Destruction or either Use Your Illusion record? No of course not, but then you wouldn't expect it to be. But it was a record that proved the Axl Rose and co. can still right a decent rock song. So I would definitely give a new album a chance and I'd try and leave any pre-conceptions at the door. What I will say is that I won't pay these rumours much attention until something more concrete materialises, such as new songs or a release date. And even then, proceed with caution.
Sean Garmer: FACT. Even with Duff McKagan back I don't care. Chinese Democracy was such a turd of an album I'm not going to get myself excited for another album that might suck just as bad. I'll gladly listen to some tracks on Spotify or whatever once it comes out, but I'm not getting all riled up again just to be let down in the end. Sorry, but this band has not been the same since Slash left and you all know it.
Daniel Wilcox: FACT. I like my Courtney Love in very, very small doses. I enjoyed her featured spot on Fall Out Boy's Save Rock and Roll last year on the track "Rat A Tat" but outside of that, I can't remember the last time I really enjoyed something Miss Love offered up. The fact that Love has been in the media again this week for reasons relating to the death of Kurt Cobain meant that I've only just bothered to get around to listening to "Wedding Day" and her other new track, "You Know My Name" and in all honesty neither really left much of an impression on me. "Wedding Day" has some pretty nice riffs around the middle portion of the song but there wasn't enough there to make me want to go back and give it many repeat listens. Vocally and lyrically the track is pretty devoid of genuine emotion nor does it have much in the way of a hook to grab the listener's attention. "You Know My Name" is actually the superior of the two tracks but still fails to resonate.
Sean Garmer: FICTION. I like the guitar and bass work on the song a lot and Courtney isn't that bad to be honest. It seems like an old school punk song that maybe doesn't make a whole lot of sense, but the instrumentation is good enough that it works. There's a lot of Courtney's non "Hole" music that sounds terrible, but this is decent actually. Maybe cause it sounds like another artist or band, but I can't place exactly who right now.
Daniel Wilcox: FICTION. The whole "role model" debate when it comes to celebrities is one that really irks me so I was thrilled to see it come up here. Celebrities aren't role models. They're famous people. Your average teenage isn't famous. They're not going to become famous singers, actors, sports players or socialites. In terms of life, celebrities are the exceptions to the rule. Most teenagers are going to grow up to have regular job with regular pay, doing regular hours and having regular families and living regular lives. So the idea that a celebrity can be a role model to your every day teenager is laughable. The people I look up to and admire are people I've known growing up who I respect for their achievements and/or beliefs. Sure, there are musicians whose skill and merits and acknowledge and admire but I've never once used an artist as a measuring stick for my own life. Sure, Beyonce doesn't seem to be the train-wreck that some of her contemporaries are, but that doesn't mean she's someone all our children should aspire to be. Let's keep it grounded, people.
Sean Garmer: FACT. I like Beyonce's music and she is a very beautiful woman that is entitled to do what a lot of other artists do and that's use sex to sell their product. I think Charles Barkley said it best "I am not a role model." I understand kids want someone to look up to, whether it be a family member, a friend, or for many, it is their favorite athlete, artist, or movie star. That being said, I think role model is a relative term that can be interpreted on multiple levels. But I don't believe that every entertainer or athlete needs to rule their life by whether they are being a good role model or not. At the end of the day, they are still human and as long as they aren't doing something to harm others, should be left alone.
Getting back to the point, One can simply define "role model" by success, which if you do that, Beyonce is a role model to young girls. She came from Destiny's Child to become a mega star and be in movies, commercials, and a whole lot of other things little girls want to be able to do in their lifetime. Maybe she has an ego, (to work in the entertainment or sports business you pretty much have to have one if you want to get somewhere by yourself.) I'm sure many people don't like that she's married to a man in Jay-Z that also has a pretty big ego. As far as her videos go, that's up to the parents to decide what's best for their children. Sex has sold things for a long time and Beyonce is only doing what almost everyone else in her medium does. But she isn't out there being an idiot, hooked on drugs, or being a slut. She has a family, she's smart, powerful, and has made herself an empire of success and I don't see how that's a bad thing? Bill O' Reilly needs to just shut his mouth, I've never seen anyone that is a bigger waste of space on planet earth than him. All he does is be a negative asshole and he needs to just go away.
Score: 0 for 6
Thoughts? Comments? Animal? Vegetable? Mineral? Reply in the comments below to give your own take on this week's topics!