Sunday, August 14, 2005

Hello from the Andes!

Smokey, My Favorite Llama

Vermont, Massachusetts and Other Dumb Stuff

Yesterday I went to Great Barrington to see my niece start off at Simon's Rock College, an artsy place that takes high school juniors. Berkshire County is a prettified country estate, real yuppified and cultured, full of all sorts of art like Shakespearean theater and Tanglewood, so Simon's Rock fits in perfectly.

Today I went up to the southern Green Mountains in Vermont: Arlington and Bennington. There is great swimming in the clear mountain streams. I picked up a boat load of trash at the local swimming hole in the Kelly Stand. It sickness me to see the amount of garbage the pigs leave behind. I especially hate bottles: lowlifes love tossing them into the all rock swimming hole. This is unusual because Vermont does have a reputation for being clean and litter free. They should uniformly raise the beverage deposit to 20 cents, that will cut down on the trash and help out the guys on the bottom who collect them for a living. Also, I finally got to use VT 279, the new cutoff from NY 7 to US 7, which allows through travelers to bypass the snarl in Bennington.

On the way there I listened to good old Equinox, WEQX FM 102.7. They are a great FM station with a good progressive and a signal that carries to Schroon, Albany, the Catskills. But why listen to alternative rock anymore? The genre is downright flabby: there is no great ballads, thundering guitar lines, good vocals, complex and enjoyable melodies and rhythms. It seems it's composed of lame guitar lines, horrible whiney vocals and self conscious, alienated lyrics of amazing vacuity considering this genre boast people who are "intellectual". No punk rage and anger, no heavy metal thunder chords, no fusion complexity or innovation, no real protest songs like Vietnam era rock; it's social commentary is so post modern and oblique, you don't ever get it. Does anyone out there still want to play good music with uplifting lyrics, good vocals and instrumentals and a beat you can dance too or hum any more? No wonder why fossils like the Stones can pack a major house while most of alternate crowd can't fill the local bar.