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Who Deserves Credit for Making Emo Cool Again?

Posted by - 03:31 PM on 04/24/14
I was planning to write something about this entire "who was talking about emo/pop-punk/whatever" debate that sprung up online yesterday (and touched on it via Twitter this morning), but Ben Cosman at The Wire nails the entire point I wanted to make in one paragraph:
A pissing-contest over who's liked emo longer isn't going to do the genre any favors in popularity. But of course an argument about emo descends into "I was talking about this band way before you were". As Cohen and Hyden (and a slew of others on Twitter) pointed out to Heisel, those who've hung around with the genre should be pleased with the progress it has made recently, both in terms of credibility and quality, instead of arguing, essentially, "I liked this first."
 
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03:41 PM on 04/24/14
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incognitojones
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03:46 PM on 04/24/14
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spansen
and then what happens?
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03:58 PM on 04/24/14
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birdman
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I caught a little of that back and forth, it was pretty ridiculous. I agree with Cosman's sentiments.

Question though, is emo any bigger now than it was in the early 2000's and mid-90s? I know that there is a revival, which I love, but I haven't felt like it has reached to the level it reached in the 2000s DriveThru/Vagrant/Doghouse/JadeTree etc... days.
04:01 PM on 04/24/14
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billyboatkid
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Man, sometimes I don't get the things people care about.

Everything could be considered emo.. I'm lyricals essentially come from an emotion you felt or are feeling, right?

That's pretty emo, bro.
04:02 PM on 04/24/14
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dontdrivenaked
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Mike Kinsella, the grandfather of everything that is emo today
04:02 PM on 04/24/14
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Vance Mook
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Great read. I saw Heisel's tweet but thought nothing of it until now; publications are allowed to spread their horizons, and no one has a monopoly on the genre. Just happens to be popular because a lot of good records are coming out as of late- really liked Evan Weiss' quote.
04:05 PM on 04/24/14
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Jason Tate
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I caught a little of that back and forth, it was pretty ridiculous. I agree with Cosman's sentiments.

Question though, is emo any bigger now than it was in the early 2000's and mid-90s? I know that there is a revival, which I love, but I haven't felt like it has reached to the level it reached in the 2000s DriveThru/Vagrant/Doghouse/JadeTree etc... days.
The cross pollination of emo and pop-punk makes this difficult to answer. It also depends on what we consider "big" to mean. My inclination, based on my personal definition of both, is to say no.
04:13 PM on 04/24/14
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Youarcade
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Drake
04:14 PM on 04/24/14
birdman
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The cross pollination of emo and pop-punk makes this difficult to answer. It also depends on what we consider "big" to mean. My inclination, based on my personal definition of both, is to say no.
I guess what I am wondering is, is there a band that is as widely regarded in the "scene" as bands like Jimmy Eat World, The Get Up Kids, or Sunny Day Real Estate were in their day?
04:34 PM on 04/24/14
deanster321
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04:37 PM on 04/24/14
Steeeve Perry
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I guess what I am wondering is, is there a band that is as widely regarded in the "scene" as bands like Jimmy Eat World, The Get Up Kids, or Sunny Day Real Estate were in their day?
Do bands like Touche Amore and La Dispute count? Diehard fan bases and critical acclaim despite appealing to a niche market. A bit like the bands you mentioned (at least until JEW broke through).

If they don't count though, I'm guessing a band like The Hotelier would. I never thought a few years ago that in 2014 an emo album like that would be one of my favourites of the year, but it's not only fantastic, it's part of a bigger movement for the genre. A true return to form, defined by great music rather than high sales.
04:45 PM on 04/24/14
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this thread should be fun.
04:45 PM on 04/24/14
birdman
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Do bands like Touche Amore and La Dispute count? Diehard fan bases and critical acclaim despite appealing to a niche market. A bit like the bands you mentioned (at least until JEW broke through).

If they don't count though, I'm guessing a band like The Hotelier would. I never thought a few years ago that in 2014 an emo album like that would be one of my favourites of the year, but it's not only fantastic, it's part of a bigger movement for the genre. A true return to form, defined by great music rather than high sales.
I am not trying to suggest that there are not bands that get to the level of Sunny Day Real Estate and such...I simply don't know. I listen to what I like but unlike my early twenties, I am not really plugged into what is actually "big" these days.

And I agree about The Hotelier, my favorite album of the year so far.
04:50 PM on 04/24/14
jonwangcb
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"So who deserves credit for making emo cool again? The bands – Weiss and his ilk – who are making music that's worth talking about again."

There was plenty of good emo being made before The World Is a Beautiful Place and Modern Baseball even existed, so I can't quite jive with this statement. Emo isn't worth talking about AGAIN, it was always worth talking about.

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