AbsolutePunk.net
   Username
Password
 
Share
02:50 PM on 07/29/13 
Offline
User Info.
SanePsychotic
Queerkegaard
SanePsychotic's Avatar
Bloomington, IN
Male - 22 Years Old
Oh, I guess Brian got pissed when the crowd started chanting 'Bruuuuce' like they wanted them to play a Bruce cover or something.

Shit, that's a major bummer. I read the blog he posted but he didn't mention exactly what happened. I'd be pissed/upset, too.
04:10 PM on 07/29/13 
Offline
User Info.
prefix-core
Andy Adores Alliteration
prefix-core's Avatar
Brookline, MA
Male - 30 Years Old
I can understand his frustration at people like that at gigs, but hey, you make your bed, I suppose you've got to sleep in it?

Did they really make that bad, though? It seemed to be more the fans/media driving it. Sure there are some (subtle) reference points, and some blatant things like singing together on-stage or whatever but...

On the whole it seems like another case of fans and the media not being able to let something go. There were a few recent interviews that I read where it got brought up and he completely brushed it off.

Shit, that's a major bummer. I read the blog he posted but he didn't mention exactly what happened. I'd be pissed/upset, too.

Not related to this but you asked about it in another thread. The Friday show was great! The Souls played a fairly standard "greatest hits" style set with a few newer songs (Never Say Die/When You're Young, Comet, Ship in a Bottle). I would post a link to a setlist but the silly button won't click for me right now...

Gaslight had a pretty fantastic set with a fairly solid mix of songs (a few from each record, except American Slang that strangely only had one selection). Highlights included a Ramones cover, Dave Hause singing on "45," and the encore that included 1930, Mulholland Drive, Patient Ferris Wheel, Blue Jeans & White T-Shirts, and the Backseat.
01:26 AM on 07/30/13 
Offline
User Info.
Paulb-182
opentofire.bandcamp.com
Paulb-182's Avatar
England
Male - 25 Years Old
Did they really make that bad, though? It seemed to be more the fans/media driving it. Sure there are some (subtle) reference points, and some blatant things like singing together on-stage or whatever but...

On the whole it seems like another case of fans and the media not being able to let something go. There were a few recent interviews that I read where it got brought up and he completely brushed it off.

I suppose, but they certainly didn't shy away from it during The 59 Sound and American Slang cycles. They welcomed the comparisons openly, at least that's how it came across to me when reading their interviews. I'm not even really a Bruce Springsteen fan either, one or two songs here and there, so it kind of winds me up too because I really don't want to hear cover songs at a Gaslight show or people talking about Bruce Springsteen. I want to hear Gaslight play Gaslight songs.
02:07 PM on 07/30/13 
Offline
User Info.
prefix-core
Andy Adores Alliteration
prefix-core's Avatar
Brookline, MA
Male - 30 Years Old
I suppose, but they certainly didn't shy away from it during The 59 Sound and American Slang cycles. They welcomed the comparisons openly, at least that's how it came across to me when reading their interviews. I'm not even really a Bruce Springsteen fan either, one or two songs here and there, so it kind of winds me up too because I really don't want to hear cover songs at a Gaslight show or people talking about Bruce Springsteen. I want to hear Gaslight play Gaslight songs.

Being compared to an artist and being synonymous with them are two totally different things--and I think, if I had to guess, is where shit gets weird. There's also sort of that subtle thing of like "Oh, so people like you just because you sound like Bruce Springsteen." I know that's a minority of fans but...It's definitely out there. To borderline insane degrees.

A friend of mine is huge on Springsteen (I'm very "eh" toward his work, personally) and she tipped me off to the fact that there's a bunch of people who go to their shows in Jersey with hopes of Springsteen showing up, assume every song they write has a Springsteen reference in it, etc. I did a bit of Googling and lo and behold? It's definitely a "thing."

I get that interview questions, fan perception, etc. are part of the deal but...As an artist, it's also their right to say "fuck that shit" and tell people how they feel about it.

I feel like I'm preaching to the choir, really so I'm going to shut up now. Haha. But I do have to say: Part of what I love about this band is the "music nerd" references in the lyrics, the random cover songs, the insertion of different songs into their own, etc.
02:53 PM on 07/30/13 
Offline
User Info.
jtcohenour
Registered User
jtcohenour's Avatar
Omaha, NE
Male
I just scored Live at Park Ave on vinyl. What a great record.
05:02 PM on 07/30/13 
Online
User Info.
EastCoastVans
oh, common life
EastCoastVans's Avatar
Been spinning Hold You Up lately. Brian Fallon acoustic never fails to disappoint.
08:24 AM on 07/31/13 
Online
User Info.
Craig Manning
Down in Jungleland
Craig Manning's Avatar
Staff Member
Being compared to an artist and being synonymous with them are two totally different things--and I think, if I had to guess, is where shit gets weird. There's also sort of that subtle thing of like "Oh, so people like you just because you sound like Bruce Springsteen." I know that's a minority of fans but...It's definitely out there. To borderline insane degrees.

A friend of mine is huge on Springsteen (I'm very "eh" toward his work, personally) and she tipped me off to the fact that there's a bunch of people who go to their shows in Jersey with hopes of Springsteen showing up, assume every song they write has a Springsteen reference in it, etc. I did a bit of Googling and lo and behold? It's definitely a "thing."

I get that interview questions, fan perception, etc. are part of the deal but...As an artist, it's also their right to say "fuck that shit" and tell people how they feel about it.

I feel like I'm preaching to the choir, really so I'm going to shut up now. Haha. But I do have to say: Part of what I love about this band is the "music nerd" references in the lyrics, the random cover songs, the insertion of different songs into their own, etc.

Fan or not, it's impossible to deny that they leaned on Springsteen hard with The '59 Sound and reaped the benefits of all of the comparisons. That album could have been a Bruce album with all the references and similarities it had. Now they're running away from that comparison to a certain extent, even though Handwritten still had a ton of his influence. I agree with Brian that it's not appropriate for people to come to someone's show expecting to see a different artist or to hear cover songs, but I definitely understand why that has become a "thing."
09:53 AM on 07/31/13 
Offline
User Info.
prefix-core
Andy Adores Alliteration
prefix-core's Avatar
Brookline, MA
Male - 30 Years Old
Fan or not, it's impossible to deny that they leaned on Springsteen hard with The '59 Sound and reaped the benefits of all of the comparisons. That album could have been a Bruce album with all the references and similarities it had. Now they're running away from that comparison to a certain extent, even though Handwritten still had a ton of his influence. I agree with Brian that it's not appropriate for people to come to someone's show expecting to see a different artist or to hear cover songs, but I definitely understand why that has become a "thing."

I understand how it's a "thing." But I also think it's a bit blown out of porportion at this point. I'm not so much a Springsteen fan, so when I listen to Gaslight I hear him as an influence but I pick up on a lot of other stuff too in their music -- Tom Petty, the Replacements, the Clash, Green Day, Social D, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden. But I don't focus on that when I listen to the band.

They aren't the "Springsteen Tribute Band" some people want them to be. There's more to them than that. And I would imagine that's what's bugging the guy.

It's one thing for someone to listen to your band because you sound like somebody else, but it's another thing for someone to listen to your band because of somebody else. If that makes sense...I mean, let's say you're dating someone. And they're dating you because you remind them of an ex. And they constantly remind you of that, instead of maybe looking at some of the other things they like about you. Eventually you're going to want to break up with that person.
10:27 AM on 07/31/13 
Online
User Info.
Craig Manning
Down in Jungleland
Craig Manning's Avatar
Staff Member
I understand how it's a "thing." But I also think it's a bit blown out of porportion at this point. I'm not so much a Springsteen fan, so when I listen to Gaslight I hear him as an influence but I pick up on a lot of other stuff too in their music -- Tom Petty, the Replacements, the Clash, Green Day, Social D, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden. But I don't focus on that when I listen to the band.

They aren't the "Springsteen Tribute Band" some people want them to be. There's more to them than that. And I would imagine that's what's bugging the guy.

It's one thing for someone to listen to your band because you sound like somebody else, but it's another thing for someone to listen to your band because of somebody else. If that makes sense...I mean, let's say you're dating someone. And they're dating you because you remind them of an ex. And they constantly remind you of that, instead of maybe looking at some of the other things they like about you. Eventually you're going to want to break up with that person.

He's definitely not the only influence. American Slang was more Motown soul than it was Jersey classic rock. But he was definitely the primary one on The '59 Sound. They lifted lyrics from everyone on that album, from Bob Seger to Counting Crows, but every other song had a very overt Bruce reference, and some of them had more than one ("Meet Me By The River's Edge," for instance).

You're right though, it makes no sense to listen to them expecting them to morph into their influences. As a huge Springsteen fan, I've always liked that aspect of their songs, but I don't mind that they're trying to move away from it. I just hope that, when it comes to making the big "departure" record that I think the next one is supposed to be, they don't purposely try to avoid their Springsteen influence just because it's gotten so overblown. I'm of a mind that you can play up different influences in your music, but you can never really escape your all time favorite artists. Their music becomes so ingrained in you that pieces of them just naturally manifest themselves in your songwriting. That's what I thought happened with Handwritten, and that's why I ultimately like it more than The '59 Sound. They weren't trying to pack songs with every lyrical reference they could, but you could still hear their influences everywhere, whether you were looking for Bruce or Pearl Jam or Nirvana or someone else.

My fear is that, because of how things have been going at shows and with the press, they're going to actively try to write and record songs that don't really ring true for them. I don't want to hear a dark, loud grunge album from them. I don't think that's who they are as artists. I think they like that kind of music and can balance it really well with their other genres, but I think when they go all the way in that direction (like when they cover "State of Love and Trust" or "Sliver." This band is special because of the way they have always balanced all of those elements into one cohesive sound. I'm not interested in seeing them turn into a neo-grunge band or another Pearl Jam clone. I think they're better than that, and I think the Springsteen element has always sort of kept them grounded in a more interesting place.
11:21 AM on 07/31/13 
Offline
User Info.
prefix-core
Andy Adores Alliteration
prefix-core's Avatar
Brookline, MA
Male - 30 Years Old
He's definitely not the only influence. American Slang was more Motown soul than it was Jersey classic rock. But he was definitely the primary one on The '59 Sound. They lifted lyrics from everyone on that album, from Bob Seger to Counting Crows, but every other song had a very overt Bruce reference, and some of them had more than one ("Meet Me By The River's Edge," for instance).

You're right though, it makes no sense to listen to them expecting them to morph into their influences. As a huge Springsteen fan, I've always liked that aspect of their songs, but I don't mind that they're trying to move away from it. I just hope that, when it comes to making the big "departure" record that I think the next one is supposed to be, they don't purposely try to avoid their Springsteen influence just because it's gotten so overblown. I'm of a mind that you can play up different influences in your music, but you can never really escape your all time favorite artists. Their music becomes so ingrained in you that pieces of them just naturally manifest themselves in your songwriting. That's what I thought happened with Handwritten, and that's why I ultimately like it more than The '59 Sound. They weren't trying to pack songs with every lyrical reference they could, but you could still hear their influences everywhere, whether you were looking for Bruce or Pearl Jam or Nirvana or someone else.

My fear is that, because of how things have been going at shows and with the press, they're going to actively try to write and record songs that don't really ring true for them. I don't want to hear a dark, loud grunge album from them. I don't think that's who they are as artists. I think they like that kind of music and can balance it really well with their other genres, but I think when they go all the way in that direction (like when they cover "State of Love and Trust" or "Sliver." This band is special because of the way they have always balanced all of those elements into one cohesive sound. I'm not interested in seeing them turn into a neo-grunge band or another Pearl Jam clone. I think they're better than that, and I think the Springsteen element has always sort of kept them grounded in a more interesting place.

I'm glad somebody else picked up on the Motown/soul vibes in American Slang. Those were readily apparent on The '59 Sound and S&Q too. And personally, I think that influence is overlooked in their music--particularly in Brian's vocals.

What's funny about being influenced by someone like Springsteen, though, is that I think the waters get muddied. From an auditory perspective, anyway. Lyrical drops are pretty cut-and-dry, but if you want to take influence on sound? It all depends on what the listener is familiar with as to what it gets compared to. And there's a contingent of Gaslight fans who are into Springsteen who feel compelled to drive that point home incessantly. I'm wondering if the same thing exists within the Hold Steady community. Those guys are definitely Springsteen fans, but that seems to be more of the way they write songs/the instrumentals rather than lyrical references from what I can glean.

Anyway. I definitely agree that I'd like to see them push forward with a wide range of influences instead of, y'know, going all dark and what-not. But I'm wondering if that's the reason why Brian said he was "going dark" while writing the record. Maybe as a way to combat outside influences creeping in and influencing their sound?

And the fact that I'm this amped about an artist to engage in a conversation like this...I'm just excited to see what comes next.
11:44 AM on 07/31/13 
Online
User Info.
Craig Manning
Down in Jungleland
Craig Manning's Avatar
Staff Member
I'm glad somebody else picked up on the Motown/soul vibes in American Slang. Those were readily apparent on The '59 Sound and S&Q too. And personally, I think that influence is overlooked in their music--particularly in Brian's vocals.

What's funny about being influenced by someone like Springsteen, though, is that I think the waters get muddied. From an auditory perspective, anyway. Lyrical drops are pretty cut-and-dry, but if you want to take influence on sound? It all depends on what the listener is familiar with as to what it gets compared to. And there's a contingent of Gaslight fans who are into Springsteen who feel compelled to drive that point home incessantly. I'm wondering if the same thing exists within the Hold Steady community. Those guys are definitely Springsteen fans, but that seems to be more of the way they write songs/the instrumentals rather than lyrical references from what I can glean.

Anyway. I definitely agree that I'd like to see them push forward with a wide range of influences instead of, y'know, going all dark and what-not. But I'm wondering if that's the reason why Brian said he was "going dark" while writing the record. Maybe as a way to combat outside influences creeping in and influencing their sound?

And the fact that I'm this amped about an artist to engage in a conversation like this...I'm just excited to see what comes next.

There's some really killer stuff going on with the American Slang songs that isn't anywhere else in their catalog though. Yeah, the Motown influence was already there (they wrote a song called "Miles Davis and the Cool," for God's sake), but I think they really went all the way there with American Slang, and it's kind of what makes that record special to me. Stuff like "Bring it On" could have been on the radio 50 years ago.

I'd agree that musical style is harder to trace than lyrical drops, so maybe it really is just my familiarity with Springsteen that makes the comparison so viable. But there are a lot of songs in their catalog that really have no Springsteen lyrical references and still have elements of his sound, at least to me. "The Backseat," "Here Comes My Man," "We Did it When We Were You," and "National Anthem" all come to mind, and those are some of my favorite songs from these guys. As for the Hold Steady, I think the comparison does get made, but it's not as frequent. Boys & Girls in America is the only record of theirs that legitimately sounds like Springsteen. The rest of their stuff definitely has his influence--their character and narrative songs owe a lot to what Bruce was doing on The Wild, The Innocent--but I don't think they've ever gotten as pigeonholed as Gaslight has. The Hold Steady have always maintained their bar-band personality. Gaslight have moved toward more grandiose themes and arena-sized melodies, and the Bruce comparison has stalked them along the way.

I can definitely understand Brian wanting to "go dark," but I still hope he remembers where he's coming from. He doesn't owe his fans anything, and I'd rather he follow his own artistic urges, but I hope he doesn't get confused about what those are just because a few dicks yelled "Brooooocccee!" at his concert.

In any case, Brian has certainly proven himself, and no matter where he goes from here, I will always listen and at least try very hard to appreciate the new directions. I don't think they're going to go from making some of my favorite albums of the past few years to making an album I don't like at all, but I do have a feeling that Handwritten could be my favorite Gaslight album for awhile.
11:58 PM on 07/31/13 
Online
User Info.
qwerty22
--
qwerty22's Avatar
Maryland
Male


Here's Brian talking about the infamous Blue Dahlia key change that was discussed a while back.
08:42 PM on 08/05/13 
Offline
User Info.
SanePsychotic
Queerkegaard
SanePsychotic's Avatar
Bloomington, IN
Male - 22 Years Old
Haha, that's great. Love it. My favorite part is where he tells someone to "pipe down."
09:23 PM on 08/05/13 
Offline
User Info.
AP_Punk
Anarchist Cat Owner
AP_Punk's Avatar
New, Mexico
Male - 26 Years Old
I agree: it should've been on the record instead of "Desire." Heh.
09:25 PM on 08/05/13 
Online
User Info.
CellarGhosts
Blodtørst
CellarGhosts's Avatar
Indiana
Male - 25 Years Old
I fucking love the key changes in Blue Dahlia, haha. Brian's the best.



NEWS, MUSIC & MORE
Search News
Release Dates
Exclusives
Best New Music
Articles
CONNECT
Submit News
Forums
Contests
Mobile Version
AP.net Logos
HIDDEN TREASURES
AbsolutePunk Podcast
Free Music
Sports Forum
Technology Forum
Recommendations
INFORMATION
Advertising
Contact Us
Copyright Policy
Terms of Service
Privacy Policy
FOLLOW
Twitter | Facebook | RSS
PropertyOfZack
UnderTheGun
Purevolume
Chorus.fm | @jason_tate