Enough with the war-time postings. The Village Voice has gone all Brit-pop on us this week. First, this week’s full-page Voice “essay” greets us with that famous picture of Tony Blair and Noel Gallagher attempting to out-grin each other at 10 Downing Street back in 1997. The essay, entitled ‘Look Back In Anger‘, cites John Harris‘ finally-published-in-America book The Last Party… except that, as is inevitable with transAtlantic publishing, it’s now got a new title: Britpop! Cool Britannia and The Spectacular Demise of English Rock. It also references the documentary Live Forever: The Rise and Fall of Brit Pop, which may or may not be readily available in the States. Hsu has little to say about Britpop that you won’t have read before, unless you’re an 18-year old New Yorker whose musical memory doesn’t extend back to the mid-nineties. He does, however, appear to like the new Oasis album Don’t Believe the Truth, which he calls “surprisingly great.”
This brings up the old adage about opinions being like arseholes, as the online edition of the Voice last night posted a review of Don’t Believe the Truth, by Dan Delano which opens with the question, “Were Oasis ever cool?” and closes with the assertion that “five years of mostly lifeless retreads does a number on an audience’s tolerance as the band continue its slooow ride to the end of the tunnel.” Somewhere in between, Delano posits himself as an Oasis fan. With friends like those…
The Voice is on firmer ground with its 5th Annual Siren Music Fest which takes place down on Coney Island tomorrow, Saturday July 16. The line-up is not as showy as in the past, but that might be a deliberately good thing: there were simply too many people in too small and too hot and humid an area for anyone to have fun last year. But if you don’t mind some pushing and shoving as a price to pay for a free festival right by the beach, set off around mid-day on the subway and hope to see Spoon, VHS or Beta, Brendan Benson, The Dears, Ambulance Ltd and Morningwood among others.
Sunday up at Central Park, the numbers are limited to 5,000 but that makes the fun more firmly guaranteed for those who get in: Giant Step is hosting its 15th Anniversary Party with Femi Kuti, Brazilian Girls and DJs Nickodemus and Smash. The event kicks off mid-afternoon and if prior Giant Step Summerstage events are anything to go by, expect a shiny representation of New York City in all its melting pot beauty.