Monday, March 22, 2010

The Target...There's No Escape!

Lyrics to "Target" by Snapcase. Not so much a battlecry against Target, rather more about self-determination and freedoms of oneself. I'm actually referring to Pearl Jam and their recent lovefest with the mega-corporation. Pearl Jam of 1996 would not be very pleased with the actions of Pearl Jam 2010 for what they've done to their good name.

Let's break it down:

- The band that once fought Ticketmaster for charging too many fees is now charging more for base tickets than nearly every other band in their space (Dave Matthews Band, Foo Fighters, and even most tickets for Tom Petty, an artist notorious for price-gouging).

- The band that despised corporate promotional concepts and campaigns to sell their art is now locked into a deal with Target. This deal has forsaken all retail besides Target (with the exception of the indie stores and iTunes), featured the band in a Target commercial and most recently, had them headline a 3 song set for Target executives, along with other rock pioneers such as Nick Jonas, Lady Antibellum and Norah Jones.

- The best live band in the world has only toured briefly and in shorter and shorter spurts since 2006, leading the fans to realize that the band knows their fans will travel farther and farther to see them, making more money and playing less dates. So much for that carbon footprint campaign the band was behind in 2006-07...

- Backspacer is not exactly their best album. It just isn't. The songs are good but not great and Pearl Jam has never made an album of just good songs. It feels rushed, half-done and lyrically empty. Still better than 99.9% of what's currently being released, but not up to par.

- Licensing and sync deals abound for PJ music and even Ed solo material. "Rise" is currently being used as the campaign music for the new season of Discovery Channel's Deadliest Catch. If Ed loves the show, then cool. If not, this is just sad.

The bottom line is that groups like the Black Eyed Peas and artits like Snoop Dogg are Pop Stars and business models for pop culture. They sell themselves as a product and like it or not, the music is secondary. It's not a knock at them as musicians...It's simply a statement of image and product over art. Bands like Pearl Jam, Radiohead, Nine Inch Nails and more are huge rock bands that don't need to go that route...The music does all the talking and the paychecks come regardless. Just ask...well, Radiohead and NIN.


"Green Disease" Live at The Showbox (2002):


b said...


And no better clip to end that on than Green Disease. Maybe they ought to revsist those lyrics a few billion times.

Stupid and Unkind said...

Totally. Revist that entire album.