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(Salon)   Hipster who worships Neutral Milk Hotel discusses the shame he felt when he discovered all his hipster demographic friends also liked Neutral Milk Hotel. "Naïve as it seems in retrospect, at the time I was appalled to face this reality"   (salon.com) divider line 65
    More: Asinine, Neutral Milk Hotel, literary magazine, espresso machine  
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2521 clicks; posted to Entertainment » on 24 Feb 2014 at 3:14 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



65 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2014-02-24 01:37:49 AM  
STOP LIKING WHAT I LIKE!
 
2014-02-24 01:43:58 AM  
I'm just going to go ahead and assume that the author is a sweet little old grandmother who gets her kicks by trolling the shiat out of hipsters. And I salute her for it.
 
2014-02-24 01:47:08 AM  
Holy shiat
 
2014-02-24 02:19:55 AM  
Sorry you like pop music, bro. Maybe next time you should spend a bit more time listening to less mainstream "indie" music.

It's a shame it turned out you have pedestrian sensibilities. You were almost unique and interesting and authentic. Now you're just another sheep in the flock.
 
2014-02-24 03:25:36 AM  
I only listen to bands that are so obscure even I don't know their names.
 
2014-02-24 03:40:54 AM  
I see the article comments are calling him out on being a narcissistic, self-centered, hipster dick. So that's heartening.
 
2014-02-24 03:51:12 AM  
I too feel that other people's art is all about me and that my appreciation of it is a sensible base on which to found my sense of self-worth, because I am a toolbox.
 
2014-02-24 03:57:22 AM  

Monkeyfark Ridiculous: I too feel that other people's art is all about me and that my appreciation of it is a sensible base on which to found my sense of self-worth, because I am a toolbox.


farkin lol at that
 
2014-02-24 04:00:43 AM  
I know there have always been somewhat odd band names...but neutral milk hotel? Are we just stringing random words together now?
 
2014-02-24 04:02:22 AM  
Shut up shut up shut up shut up shut up shut up shut up

I don't know where this Salon douchenozzle with a thesaurus got his degree, but he payed to much for it. I don't understand how a writer or editor can read that article and think "Yeah, that's something that people will find interesting and not at all stupid."
 
2014-02-24 04:03:37 AM  

untaken_name: I know there have always been somewhat odd band names...but neutral milk hotel? Are we just stringing random words together now?


That's my INXS cover band's name.
 
2014-02-24 04:06:07 AM  

Fark You I'm Drunk: Shut up shut up shut up shut up shut up shut up shut up

I don't know where this Salon douchenozzle with a thesaurus got his degree, but he payed to much for it. I don't understand how a writer or editor can read that article and think "Yeah, that's something that people will find interesting and not at all stupid."


Yet here it is on fark. Stupid sells.
 
2014-02-24 04:09:41 AM  
I don't know how people can stand listening to such schmaltzy music.
 
2014-02-24 04:11:43 AM  
asset-f.soup.io
 
2014-02-24 04:22:45 AM  

Fark You I'm Drunk: Shut up shut up shut up shut up shut up shut up shut up

I don't know where this Salon douchenozzle with a thesaurus got his degree, but he payed to much for it. I don't understand how a writer or editor can read that article and think "Yeah, that's something that people will find interesting and not at all stupid."


This.  As I was reading the article I kept hearing "Urge to kill... rising..." in Homer Simpson's voice.
 
2014-02-24 04:46:19 AM  
i.imgur.com
 
2014-02-24 04:47:56 AM  
Damnit, wrong image.

/no1curr.jpg
 
2014-02-24 05:44:42 AM  

Hiro-ACiD: Damnit, wrong image.

/no1curr.jpg


That one's still pretty great, though. Watched that movie the other day.
 
2014-02-24 06:17:14 AM  

Hiro-ACiD: Damnit, wrong image.

/no1curr.jpg


No, no that was good.  I'm not sure why, but I like this new meme of yours.
 
2014-02-24 06:51:36 AM  
i.imgur.com
 
2014-02-24 07:25:36 AM  
f.kulfoto.com
 
2014-02-24 07:35:27 AM  
I'm going to listen to In the Aeroplane Over the Sea just to spite him. I'm sure it would bother him that I like the album.

Fark You I'm Drunk: Shut up shut up shut up shut up shut up shut up shut up

I don't know where this Salon douchenozzle with a thesaurus got his degree, but he payed to much for it. I don't understand how a writer or editor can read that article and think "Yeah, that's something that people will find interesting and not at all stupid."


Harvard
 
2014-02-24 07:59:20 AM  
Wow. That is a monument of self-centeredness. I know people who said that when they first heard Janis Joplin or Jim Morrison or Eddie Vedder, it felt like they were talking to them, but it was just an expression.

How does somebody make it through college without realizing that the world doesn't revolve around them?

Besides, wouldn't you want the bands you like to have some commercial and popular success? You know, so they have an incentive to keep making the music you like?
 
2014-02-24 08:23:07 AM  
I've seen kiddie pools less shallow than this guy.
 
2014-02-24 08:58:29 AM  

swankywanky: [f.kulfoto.com image 550x818]


I really want to punch that girl in the face.
 
2014-02-24 09:09:26 AM  

untaken_name: I know there have always been somewhat odd band names...but neutral milk hotel? Are we just stringing random words together now?


I thought it was just a place he liked to stay.
 
2014-02-24 09:27:04 AM  
Alright...I like Neutral Milk Hotel, and do think it was a seminal album in that genre.  And I understand the idea of exclusivity in art...if a work is easily liked by everyone, then very possibly it's not very groundbreaking and is probably so watered down to the point of bore.  But that is often entirely relativistically temporal.

Everyone likes the Impressionist Painters now...my grandmother, my beginning painters, my mechanic.  But in their time, they were reviled by their contemporaries, shunned, and laughed at.  So with the early Modernists.  Van Gogh died penniless and mentally ill, yet is now considered by some to be the most influential painter in western history. It took a few patrons with vision to keep the "faith" alive until the rest of the world recognized the genius of these artists' insight.  These guys were "Van Gogh hipsters".

My point is that this whole hipster meme of liking what everyone else doesn't is simultaneously tired and timeless.  The word "hipster" could be switched with any number of sub-culture nomenclature..."Beatnik", "Mod", "Hippie", "Rocker", "Hesher", "Punk", "Skater" (those are just the western ones)...the people who exist out of the norm of popular culture, and constantly reach down into the dregs and find something that could be of worth and drag it up to the surface (whether it be fans or artists...most times, both) have always existed and are necessary to the growth of pop culture.  It only becomes hackneyed and a target for disdain when a critical mass has been reached.  There are many esoteric things that I only became aware of when it was brought to light by the machine of mass culture...this makes them no less groundbreaking just because I was late to the revolution.

Simultaneously, I sort of understand the artist's crisis of confidence.  When it feels as though you have this little gem of a thing that you and your friends alone enjoy, it hurts a little when it seems that you weren't quite as visionary as you thought.  Getting older, you realize that the machine of culture moves without you as an actor, and these pangs go away.  But the art still exists and is good, and you're just happy to experience it no matter whether it happened when you heard them write the song (or paint the picture or write the book) or you heard it on 99.1 FM (or saw it in your art history book, or at Barnes and Noble).

So yes, you're a douchebag, author, and yet I'm totally sympathetic to you.  Let's have a craft beer in a can together and talk about it.

//commence fark beating.
 
2014-02-24 09:28:44 AM  
Just don't understand this aspect of the music "scene", music to me isn't a social event, its a profoundly solo experience that I turn to when I don't want to listen to the rest of the world.

Its kinda like, say, Elder Scrolls Online.  I liked the previous games in the series but I particularly turned to Skyrim precisely because in this overly-MMO-centric market it provided a single player experience where I could escape from dealing with obnoxious raid leaders and loot ninjas.  Taking the success of that single player game and saying "hey, lets make it multiplayer!" removes the key compelling aspect of the game for this player.  Same with music, if I were forced to deal with overbearing music fans I'd not participate in the activity.
 
2014-02-24 09:45:05 AM  

meehaw: Alright...I like Neutral Milk Hotel, and do think it was a seminal album in that genre.  And I understand the idea of exclusivity in art...if a work is easily liked by everyone, then very possibly it's not very groundbreaking and is probably so watered down to the point of bore.  But that is often entirely relativistically temporal.

Everyone likes the Impressionist Painters now...my grandmother, my beginning painters, my mechanic.  But in their time, they were reviled by their contemporaries, shunned, and laughed at.  So with the early Modernists.  Van Gogh died penniless and mentally ill, yet is now considered by some to be the most influential painter in western history. It took a few patrons with vision to keep the "faith" alive until the rest of the world recognized the genius of these artists' insight.  These guys were "Van Gogh hipsters".

My point is that this whole hipster meme of liking what everyone else doesn't is simultaneously tired and timeless.  The word "hipster" could be switched with any number of sub-culture nomenclature..."Beatnik", "Mod", "Hippie", "Rocker", "Hesher", "Punk", "Skater" (those are just the western ones)...the people who exist out of the norm of popular culture, and constantly reach down into the dregs and find something that could be of worth and drag it up to the surface (whether it be fans or artists...most times, both) have always existed and are necessary to the growth of pop culture.  It only becomes hackneyed and a target for disdain when a critical mass has been reached.  There are many esoteric things that I only became aware of when it was brought to light by the machine of mass culture...this makes them no less groundbreaking just because I was late to the revolution.

Simultaneously, I sort of understand the artist's crisis of confidence.  When it feels as though you have this little gem of a thing that you and your friends alone enjoy, it hurts a little when it seems that you weren't quite as visionary as you thought. ...


Blow it out your ass, Howard.
 
2014-02-24 09:47:21 AM  
My special snowflake is melting into a puddle of mundanity.

Oh alright, buy a Vespa and it will all be better.
 
2014-02-24 09:49:04 AM  

meehaw: Alright...I like Neutral Milk Hotel, and do think it was a seminal album in that genre.  And I understand the idea of exclusivity in art...if a work is easily liked by everyone, then very possibly it's not very groundbreaking and is probably so watered down to the point of bore.  But that is often entirely relativistically temporal.

Everyone likes the Impressionist Painters now...my grandmother, my beginning painters, my mechanic.  But in their time, they were reviled by their contemporaries, shunned, and laughed at.  So with the early Modernists.  Van Gogh died penniless and mentally ill, yet is now considered by some to be the most influential painter in western history. It took a few patrons with vision to keep the "faith" alive until the rest of the world recognized the genius of these artists' insight.  These guys were "Van Gogh hipsters".

My point is that this whole hipster meme of liking what everyone else doesn't is simultaneously tired and timeless.  The word "hipster" could be switched with any number of sub-culture nomenclature..."Beatnik", "Mod", "Hippie", "Rocker", "Hesher", "Punk", "Skater" (those are just the western ones)...the people who exist out of the norm of popular culture, and constantly reach down into the dregs and find something that could be of worth and drag it up to the surface (whether it be fans or artists...most times, both) have always existed and are necessary to the growth of pop culture.  It only becomes hackneyed and a target for disdain when a critical mass has been reached.  There are many esoteric things that I only became aware of when it was brought to light by the machine of mass culture...this makes them no less groundbreaking just because I was late to the revolution.

Simultaneously, I sort of understand the artist's crisis of confidence.  When it feels as though you have this little gem of a thing that you and your friends alone enjoy, it hurts a little when it seems that you weren't quite as visionary as you thought. ...



Dude, you're buying a CD. That hardly makes you the band's benefactor.
 
2014-02-24 09:50:40 AM  

loki see loki do: meehaw: Alright...I like Neutral Milk Hotel, and do think it was a seminal album in that genre.  And I understand the idea of exclusivity in art...if a work is easily liked by everyone, then very possibly it's not very groundbreaking and is probably so watered down to the point of bore.  But that is often entirely relativistically temporal.

Everyone likes the Impressionist Painters now...my grandmother, my beginning painters, my mechanic.  But in their time, they were reviled by their contemporaries, shunned, and laughed at.  So with the early Modernists.  Van Gogh died penniless and mentally ill, yet is now considered by some to be the most influential painter in western history. It took a few patrons with vision to keep the "faith" alive until the rest of the world recognized the genius of these artists' insight.  These guys were "Van Gogh hipsters".

My point is that this whole hipster meme of liking what everyone else doesn't is simultaneously tired and timeless.  The word "hipster" could be switched with any number of sub-culture nomenclature..."Beatnik", "Mod", "Hippie", "Rocker", "Hesher", "Punk", "Skater" (those are just the western ones)...the people who exist out of the norm of popular culture, and constantly reach down into the dregs and find something that could be of worth and drag it up to the surface (whether it be fans or artists...most times, both) have always existed and are necessary to the growth of pop culture.  It only becomes hackneyed and a target for disdain when a critical mass has been reached.  There are many esoteric things that I only became aware of when it was brought to light by the machine of mass culture...this makes them no less groundbreaking just because I was late to the revolution.

Simultaneously, I sort of understand the artist's crisis of confidence.  When it feels as though you have this little gem of a thing that you and your friends alone enjoy, it hurts a little when it seems that you weren't quite as visionary as you thought. ...

Blow it out your ass, Howard.


What are you talking about? That was authentic frontier gibberish right there.

/I kid. Couldn't pass up a Blazing Saddles reference.
 
kth
2014-02-24 09:54:17 AM  

stoli n coke: Besides, wouldn't you want the bands you like to have some commercial and popular success? You know, so they have an incentive to keep making the music you like?


THIS.

Also, I want them to have success so that they don't have to have a soul-crushing day job. I want them to be able to afford a house and family.
 
2014-02-24 09:55:31 AM  

DrPainMD: I only listen to bands that are so obscure even I don't know their names.


I like that band that refused to play, and smashed their shiat.
 
2014-02-24 10:16:04 AM  
Next time I see a dude wearing a peacoat, scarf, neon with earth tones or gush about anything whatsoever I'm going to tell them I'm about to flashback to Baghdad 2003. And I might not be joking.
 
2014-02-24 10:19:12 AM  
I only listen to the music my mind makes in my head when I read the sheet music of my favorite band.
 
2014-02-24 10:58:12 AM  
Neutral Milk Hotel played the Tower in Philadelphia recently. I was looking at FB the night they played, and realized it would have been the perfect evening to go on a hipster burglary spree: everyone I know, and everyone they knew was at the show that night (or at least claimed to be).
 
2014-02-24 11:14:08 AM  

loki see loki do


My special snowflake is melting into a puddle of mundanity.


"My house is made of mediocrity!"

p.twimg.com


Not really a direct response as such. Your post just made me think of it.
 
2014-02-24 11:14:38 AM  

kth: stoli n coke: Besides, wouldn't you want the bands you like to have some commercial and popular success? You know, so they have an incentive to keep making the music you like?

THIS.

Also, I want them to have success so that they don't have to have a soul-crushing day job. I want them to be able to afford a house and family.


i this this, too.

also, when it comes to art, the artist and the audience don't affect it's goodness.  the artist made it, but once made, he doesn't matter.  the audience enjoys it and patronizes the artist, but their opinion does not affect the quality of the art (it may judge the monetary value, but that's immaterial).

of course, that's also nonsense.  but, the point is, no one else's opinion matters but your own. when it comes to art.  when it comes to other stuff, it would be nice if our artists got paid for their work so they could make more art.  that means people have to like it and pay for it.

if you want a band to be your own little secret, you hate that band.
 
2014-02-24 11:15:43 AM  

DrPainMD: I only listen to bands that are so obscure even I don't know their names.


Psht.  My favorite band doesn't even know they're a band.
 
2014-02-24 11:18:48 AM  
I just went to a Neutral Milk Hotel concert a few weeks ago in Chicago. The crowd wasn't as dense with hipsters as I thought it would be. Surprisingly there were a lot of older folks (40s and up).
 
2014-02-24 11:33:53 AM  

Accordion: I just went to a Neutral Milk Hotel concert a few weeks ago in Chicago. The crowd wasn't as dense with hipsters as I thought it would be. Surprisingly there were a lot of older folks (40s and up).


well, they are from the late 80s/90s.
 
2014-02-24 12:22:38 PM  

busy chillin': Accordion: I just went to a Neutral Milk Hotel concert a few weeks ago in Chicago. The crowd wasn't as dense with hipsters as I thought it would be. Surprisingly there were a lot of older folks (40s and up).

well, they are from the late 80s/90s.


"Retro People"? I like it. If it helps me give 20 something chicks an internal indian burn when I'm in my 40's and 50's, I'll drag it out.
 
2014-02-24 12:26:06 PM  

stoli n coke: Dude, you're buying a CD. That hardly makes you the band's benefactor.


Wha?  I was talking about the general nature of the hipster hate.  The band has little to do with my comments.  But, buying a band's CD and going to their shows does make one a benefactor of many benefactors.
 
2014-02-24 12:30:11 PM  

Ivandrago: I'm going to listen to In the Aeroplane Over the Sea just to spite him. I'm sure it would bother him that I like the album.


This makes me want to whip out On Avery Island just to really get the author's goat.

/loved the first time I put on ItAOtS for a new group of people and they all sang along with me
 
2014-02-24 12:39:38 PM  
What IS Fark's favorite collective artist? I believe it to be Styx.
 
2014-02-24 01:17:41 PM  

kanesays: What IS Fark's favorite collective artist? I believe it to be Styx.


Weird Al.  Everything else is for hipsters, whiners, or assholes.

That is why we dont have a Music Tab anymore.
 
2014-02-24 01:21:41 PM  
I thoroughly enjoy articles written by someone both paid by the word and with a thesaurus on their computer. Fortunately, this article satisfied both requirements!
 
2014-02-24 01:27:34 PM  
Way back in 1982, I was a fan of a local band in my little redneck college town. They played local clubs for a few bucks at the door and a 2-drink minimum. The first time I saw them, they were on a double-bill with The Barbecue Killers. They had this great, great single out, and it was on the jukebox in every dive-bar in town.

The day their first EP came out, I went down to the local record store and bought it. Maybe 100 other people did that day, including their friends and family. Who knows. I loved that record, and played the fark out of it.

Over the course of the following 20 years, they became one of the biggest bands in the whole world. And with very few exceptions, I enjoyed the music they put out as a band until they called it quits. Including that first EP, which still sounds great to me.

So... was I a hipster back in the day, for liking something great that other people eventually caught on to? Or do I have have shiat taste because what I've liked all this time turned out to be very popular with the masses, and therefore a bunch of pop dreck?

Or is it just a meaningless question, and people should just listen to what they enjoy and not worry too much about it?
 
2014-02-24 01:30:29 PM  

Mr_Fabulous: Or is it just a meaningless question, and people should just listen to what they enjoy and not worry too much about it?


I feel like the word has become synonymous with "poser" in the 90's.  Nobody really knows what it means but they are doing their best not to be one.  I am sure the 80s/70s/60s had similar words.
 
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