Wednesday, July 30, 2008

RE: Hipster: the Dead End of Western Civilization

Aww, come on.. I'm sure there were people writing things like this about the hippie, grunge, punk, and hip-hop movements. Every new aesthetic is going to piss somebody off, and the hipsters are no different.

First off, kids were dressing in vintage clothes and wearing skinny jeans long before American Apparel (a great and truly American company btw) and Urban Outfitters. I think the industry was quick to pick up on the trend and find the market, but they did not invent it.

Second, how is indie music (the premise) not a statement? These are bands that don't sign onto major record labels and aren't played on the radio. They're all about making music for the sake of making music. They don't have to subscribe to what major labels want from them, and the result is unique, innovative, and interesting. The same can't be said for the manufactured-pop that comes off the radio and MTV, and in a time when Brittany Spears (and half of America watches American Idol for God's sake) still dominates headlines, I find this refreshing.

You want a manifesto? How about this: Fuck the music industry- we'll make our own.

I don't disagree that superficiality is a driving force behind the trend, but only as much as any fashion statement or any identification with a certain type of music.