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The last real rock stars

The Strokes not only looked like the perfect band; They also smelt of it

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The last real rock stars

The secret is in title. True that meet Me in bathroom — in Spanish, see you in bathroom (Neo Person) — is justified. Historically, it is title of a subject of second album of The Strokes. And sociologically, y assure that re were many drugs and enough sex here-I-rascal-here-te-kill.

One suspects that will of publisher or worst instincts of author, Lizzy Goodman, was imposed. Initially, his volume was going to be called Last Real Rock Stars and that did promise: to investigate shortage of generational impact groups, running on ruins of a musical industry as evil as necessary, with a public atomized and lost in Maze of Internet mirrors.

Essentially, see you in bathroom covers musical movement that emerged in new York during first decade of this millennium. You may remember some pointers: strokes, LCD Soundsystem, Los Yeah Yeah yeah, Interpol. Many of m, groups (badly) raised in Manhattan, thanks to millionaires, generous and tolerant parents. And response of colleagues forced to live in Brooklyn, walled in asceticism and seriousness: The National, TV on Radio, Dirty projectors, Vampire Weekend...

The band Yeah Yeah Yeah.

The result is a huge book (700 pages) and juicy, abundant in anecdotes, evils, account arrangements, acts of contrition, gossip of bed. No shortage of "bad": Ryan Adams, James Murphy are outlined with sinister inks. Technically, we meet in bathroom uses choral structure developed by Jean Stein and George Plimpton to narrate lightning that was Edie Sedgwick. The Sedgwick did little more than shine and Eclipse but Edie (Circe editions) relented Warhol court, anor legendary New York scene.

Something similar happens with See you in bathroom. The main protagonism corresponds to Strokes, a quintet of impeccable look that dazzled ir contemporaries, before being lost in a whirlwind of drugs, crisis of identity, creative frustration. Its hook, ay, diminished as y moved away from great redoubts hipster (I am remembering its desolate presentation in Riviera Madrid, re by 2002).

They were not, as some believed, new Velvet Underground. They remembered more, no one was offended, Monkees: types perfectly dressed and hairstyles, according to zeitgeist of time. Already, Monkees did not play or composed in ir first discs but, taking stock, y had better songs. For ir part, strokes were moving insecure, conscious of winning lottery: y benefited from those hypes that articulated New Musical Express and or British media in need of Mitificar fresh names.

They inhabited strokes in a microclimate of blind worship: y not only looked like perfect stars of rock, is that — we are informed here excitedly — even "smelt of rock stars" (sorry to report that any group on tour ends up stinking same).

Today we even doubt wher his vandalism, his kamikaze hedonism were personal decisions or automatisms of obligatory fulfillment for aspiring to legends of rock'n'roll (in a time where, in addition, a season of detoxification was anor acceptable option more). Yet strokes today awaken our sympathy and understanding. Their smartest companions, unable to react to barbarism of 9/11 and American response, have less excuses.

Did you understand what was going on around you? They could invoke Honorable Bohemian tradition of new York but y did not seem to notice that Giuliani, Bloomberg and or municipal vultures wanted to transform Manhattan into a reserve for millionaires and tourists, with no gap for living arts ( gentrification, you know , are ors).

It may indeed be last powerful rock scene, after grunge and Britpop. However, even Goodman warns of scarcity of New York harvest. So add to undisputed outsiders, such as White stripes, and flimsy (Kings of Leon, The Killers); Representatives from faraway countries (Sweden, Scotland, Australia) come in with footwear. If I had included Black Keys, listen, we'd have had a very moving move.


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