Life as Art & Curiousity

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Revival of Pop: Little Boots

   Little Boots is a revival for popular music.  Forget Gaga, this young Brit recoils a sweet and catchy innocence thats been missing from pop for years.

     As a global community, we've gradually become conditioned  to believe that pop music automatically equals garbage. And there is a lot of garbage. (a lot) This 'Pop Star Effect' was recognized early on as a cash cow within the industry and a formula thats been tapped, turned, dissected and narrowed down to a fine science. Pop music has evolved for the worst throughout the years, ultimately lacking individuality, innovation and self respect. But, alas, it doesn't have to be this way...

    On some level, we must take pop for what it is: easy, light, catchy and most often sweet.  Its never delved too far below the surface, but it did -- once upon a time -- hold elements of authenticity amongst the tag lines. Popular music of times past provided a fresh take along side that catchy, repetitious beat or melody. But somewhere along the line, pop lost its integrity. Where did it go? This mediated "formula" has been reduced, reused and recycled to its maximum capacity and its time for change.

   Little Boots headlines a new generation. The formula reinvented: personal vision and innovative technique in a digital era. Her sounds  cater to the ever-growing electropop movement and ooze the innocent, sugary sweetness that embodies pop in its true essence. And as a small town girl making it big, her story is one of endearment.  Up until the last year(ish), Little Boots has lead a pretty average life. Being discovered the old fashion way has allowed LB the time to cultivate the persona, smarts and sound she portrays today. With an Honours degree in Cultural Studies and a legitimate, true to self musicality-- Little Boots exudes the appeal of pop music as an art. [And without so obviously trying to be "original" and "different" --cough cough-- Gaga] Working on the piano, stylophone, synthesizers and most notably a Japanese electronic instrument called a Tenori-on, she has the heart and proves that pop music and personal vision are not mutually exclusive. 

   Just because pop music generally entails a certain lightness, doesn't mean it can't have integrity and allow a positive, creative influence on our culture. And I believe this is why I have warmed to the lady known as Little Boots: her story, her methods, her interviews all seem to hold pieces personal truth and an awareness that stems beyond a standardized pop person. It is time for popular culture to dig a little deeper, or at least just be less predictable. Back it up. After all, popular music is the mainstream-- and the mainstream affects the greater part of our culture and community. Directly or indirectly, we are all in it together! Society could be richer and more full of life if we could give this music the opportunity to surprise us.

  The electro genre of music is the shift to a new paradigm. Popular music has changed its focus to compliment our digital daze.  With acts like Little Boots, La Roux, MGMT (to name a few) appealing to a mainstream audience and an open connection for independent artists via the internet, heres hoping for some new and different trends for today's popular music.

[Disco sticks not included.]

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