i have to be totally honest. i bought this only last week. i knew of galaxie 500 back in the mid to late 1990s, when several guest programmers included their songs in their selections on rage. i quite vividly recall the video for blue thunder (which wasn’t on this, the debut album). i knew i liked it.
i also can understand why they held the place they did, in esteem, in spite of their extremely short life. in hindsight, i know why i didn’t pursue them further, because they were no longer producing music in that form by the time i came to consuming consciously. and for me, it was entirely about what was being made right then and there – a kind of essential currency. i think it was because i knew it had to be my opportunity to own some music that hadn’t come before. this bears further analysis at another time, particularly as regards younger people today revisiting and loving/knowing more of that older stuff.
i get how galaxie 500 were in a slightly different sphere, but similar genuinely unique space as a contemporary band like slint, for instance, in the transition from the 1980s to the 1990s. and like slint, i hear elements of much music made since then showing through. it’s hard to pinpoint replicas, but there are even discernible links through to arcade fire. i know galaxie 500 attributed earlier bands to their own sound. i guess nothing is truly original.
but some bands manage to make music that, in spite of influences, is genuinely their own, and unparalleled. i’d love to be able to identify what characteristics these are. maybe they’re not technical at all, and perhaps even purely subjective to the listener. i have said before there’s a lot of music i love to death that i just can’t seem to get others to understand, like or care about.
what makes me like the music i do, and others their own? i really do want to think more deeply about the things that i know i like, and try to paint that picture on a meta level. knowing where music has come from, historically and through influences, will never mean as much as how i experience it, anytime i listen to it. and that stands for anyone.
so what do i conclude? yes, this is a great album and i’m glad i finally own it.