Youngstrr Joey is probably at the extreme end of that, not for noise or aggression, just sheer sloppy, out-of-tune chaos. Back when lo-fi was the thing everyone described music as in press releases whether it was lo-fi or not (i.e. about three years ago now, I guess) there was a constant debate about whether things sounded so rough because it was a stylistic conceit, or whether it was simply just the best the band knew how to do.
There’s something similar going on here. I’ve heard some of the guys involved in this sneering at the use of the word slacker, and I have some sympathy, because genre terminology is vague at best and both pointless and thoughtless at worst. Still, the ‘fuck it I can’t even be bothered acting like I am trying to sing’ attitude falls pretty squarely into that territory. It’s not so much slacker, which often felt passive and lazy, it’s aggressively slacker. There is an awful lot of ‘fuck you’ steeped in the drawl of these vocals and the choppy snarling of the guitar.
Even with my own taste in this stuff being pretty well-developed, some of this is pretty heavy going. It’s not stuff I would just slap on the stereo because hey, why not, but there is definitely pop music in there, albeit buried deeper than pretty much anywhere else. In that sense, although this is less narcoleptic, Youngstrr Joey has a fair bit in common with Passion Pusher, in whose band Cal Donnelly also plays.
For example, listening to the most determinedly unlistenable of the tunes on Bandcamp – Furry/Blurry for example – there is an almost completely buried but properly fucking brilliant guitar part growling away below the surface. There is a lot of this stuff around in Glasgow at the moment, mostly emanating from within a particular group of pals who seem to have gravitated towards one another, presumably for musical reasons.
I don’t know if it qualifies as stuff which is destined to break through to popularity anytime soon. Probably not. But there is pop music underpinning most of this and presumably someone somewhere will take all the piss and vinegar out of it and get famous replicating this kind of stuff. And I will lose all interest when they do.More: youngstrr joey