There’s currently an issue regarding nostalgia. I don’t mean nostalgia in the social-cultural sense, where all pop music and fashion are currently residing in some imagined early 1990s. I mean personal nostalgia.
I’m now sufficiently insecure that I regularly question my own opinions. Example: we all know hip-hop is not as good as it was. The beats are soft and ill-defined, there is no flow outside Kendrick bars – it’s all a bit… on spice. It’s all auto-tune; a genre almost entirely built on a Kanye West album from a decade ago that wasn’t even very good at the time (though it did inspire an excellent article here, from Simon Reynolds). It was interesting, and well produced, but it was very navel-gazey and soppy for such a large-living rapper. (Let me guess – that’s why it’s so good!) Was he still the Louis Vuitton Don at that point?
Anyway, as right as I am about all of the above, and even though I’m as opinionated as I always was, I’m now old. And I therefore worry about whether I am now saying this stuff because I’m old and left behind by modern culture.
I didn’t care before. I just thought “fuck this noise – it’s blah blah blah and a pile of rubbish”. And when I was in my teens and 20s it was fine, because I was young and pretty much exactly who this shit was for. So if I rejected it, I was right.
Now I’m in my late 30s, and pop music and fashion and girls with Liam Gallagher eyebrows aren’t intended for me. So if I think they’re shit, maybe I’m just old and they’re not for old people.
I love Fact Magazine. Well, I did. It’s still fine, no beef here, I just don’t read it as much as I used to. But I remember reading an article of theirs where they talked about a rap album and were all “don’t complain that they can’t rhyme and there are no decent beats – that’s not what rap is about now”.
But instead of thinking “that’s me told”, the result was the perception they were desperately trying to convince themselves that they were keeping up, trying to dampen down their own instinctual reaction to the music in question.
So anyway, I’m going to keep tabs on ageing. I had some people agree with me on Twitter the other day, but they’re around my age. I may start reviewing the top-streamed songs on Spotify, or writing about some plonkers on YouTube who poke corpses while on holiday in Japan. But I’ll do something, probably while doubting myself too much.