Sep 062010

The wisdom of The Hall continues to amaze me. For as many knowledgeable individuals who dazzle with their rock knowledge, it is the collective wisdom of our participants that I find most dazzling.

It is in this spirit that I want to allow for further amazement—not only for the people but by the people. I was going to try to turn this into my own original post, maybe even do a few minutes of research on the Web, but then I thought better of it. Instead, I’d like to pose a question to the collective wisdom of The Orockle.

The question I’d like to pose – and one that I hope will inspire other questions we’d like to have asked when we had more time to find the answers ourselves – will follow a little bit of background. Read on, please.
Ever get the feeling you’re not only not cool but no longer capable of recognizing cool if it walks right up to you? I’d been hearing about some band called Owl City, seeing their name posted on blogs here and there, maybe hearing them referred to in conversations. For some reason, maybe because of the folk art-style sketch on a pale blue background album cover that their name suggests, I thought they were part of today’s cool music scene. Then I heard their hit song, and now I’m completely confused about what is cool.

Oh Mighty Orockle, is Owl City considered cool? While you’re at it, how about the following artists:

  • My Morning Jacket
  • Bruce Springsteen
  • New bands that sound like Springsteen

As you answer these questions, The Orockle, can you please help other Townspeople who may be suffering similar doubts in the area of what is cool? Thank you.


  16 Responses to “Consult the Orockle: Cool or Uncool?”

  1. Owl City: No
    My Morning Jacket: Yes
    Bruce Springsteen (Darkness at the Edge of Town to Nebraska): Yes
    New bands that sound like Springsteen: In my opinion, no (except Arcade Fire, but I don’t think they sound like Springsteen all that much).

  2. machinery

    My daughter laughs at this Owl City band — probably because she hates teen-focused twee. So no, this band is not cool.

  3. ladymisskirroyale

    Owl City – Ewwww!
    My Morning Jacket – Cool
    Bruce – I’m told he is the epitome of cool, but I’m a modest fan so may not be orakle-worthy.
    Bruce-lite: Not cool.

    How about the Orakle and RTH’s naming some current cool bands? Tame Impala anyone?

  4. Owl City: No. They (or he) are merely an very expert copy of The Postal Service, or least on that one big song.

    MMJ: No

    Bruce: No, but I’m feeling especially ungenerous right now.

    Bruce-lite: Only The Constantines. Everyone else blows.

  5. Mr. Moderator

    ladymiss wrote:

    How about the Orakle and RTH’s naming some current cool bands? Tame Impala anyone?

    From what The Orockle has downloaded to date (3 songs), Tame Impala is cool.

  6. BigSteve

    I am no expert on what’s cool, but I like My Morning Jacket. Great singer, and their last album took some interesting detours.

  7. The Owl City singer may end up being a very good singer whenever his gonads drop.

  8. Mr. Moderator

    The Postal Service: Are they cool?

  9. 2000 Man

    Wow, Owl City is so uncool I couldn’t even listen to a full minute of it. Yuck.

    My Morning Jacket is pretty dull in my book. I got Z because I was told I’d love it so much, and it sounds like watered down Radiohead to me.

    Bruce was cool a long time ago. Bands that sound a little like Bruce are pretty okay, usually.

    Then again, I’m a total L7. I listen to pretty much crap.

  10. Owl City had a cute song and video from about 4-5 months ago. With the lifespan of these things, no longer cool.

    I haven’t noticed any major re-evaluation of Bruce Springsteen recently so he is exactly as cool as he ever was .

    Springsteen-esque has recently become an adjective for American trad rock style and does seem to be cool right now with Gaslight Anthem, Hold Steady and the Arcade Fire releases this summer.

  11. bostonhistorian

    Having never heard Owl City or My Morning Jacket and the sum total of my Bruce listening in the last five years was hearing Glory Days over the PA someplace, I’m not qualified to judge. Either I’m completely uncool, or I’m dry ice cool.

  12. Mr. Moderator

    The Hold Steady and Gaslight Anthem are the two Boss-esque bands I had in mind. Recently I saw some 20-year-old hipster punk girl in a Gaslight Anthem t-shirt, and I was thrown for a bit of a loop. I don’t think either of those bands “suck,” but it still throws me off when a young person who is culturally cool goes for any of these neo-Boss bands. I think back to the days of Beaver Brown Band and John Eddie and the Front Street Runners, Baby Boss bands from the early ’80s who came out of the gates UNcool, despite how cool The Boss himself still was considered.

  13. bostonhistorian

    I never thought of Springsteen as cool. He’s always been the Golden Retriever of rock to me. Eager to please, tireless, good looking, and dumb as a post.

  14. Mr. Moderator

    Quoth bostonhistorian:

    Springsteen: the Golden Retriever of Rock

    So let it be written, so let it be done!

  15. bostonhistorian

    Oh jeez.

  16. I think MMJ are cool, Kings of Leon are not.

    Postal Service is cool, Owl City is not.

    Springsteen is cool, John Cafferty and the Beaver Brown Band, well, really now.

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