I found this on Tumblr through Norman Brannon and already shared it there, but I just had to mention it again because in a way, it not only encapsulates what I love about Fugazi, but it also the kind of music journalism I love. It’s not only structurally amazing from a writing standpoint, but also maintains the passion for music that is missing a lot of times.
Kelley makes a really valid point about the band, about the Internet, and about promotional machines.
This presents an interesting question and the reason I decided to write about Fugazi today: In an age when it has become mindbogglingly easy to not only release, but also record and distribute your music independently, who is their modern day equivelant? Who is the truly independent torchbearer of this century and decade?
If you say The Arcade Fire you aren’t trying very hard. You are also wrong: The Arcade Fire pay Radiohead’s publicist three grand a month to promote them. They have people actively work them at radio. They have a team behind them.
Fugazi did not. They didn’t have a manager. They didn’t have a publicist. There’s not a fucking marketing department at Dischord. You would think that, in an era where the Internet can instantaneously raise a band’s profile organically, you would be able to apply countless answers to this question.
But the fact that you’re struggling to find an answer right now illustrates just how special of a band they actually were.
This sort of realization, a plain fact and practice that spun out of the world Fugazi were in, and the fact that it’s impossible to ever recapture as a movement again, is not only why I love Fugazi, but why it’s so hard for me to latch onto bands and movements since then.
It’s not to say that I don’t love music that came since then. Far from it. I have a tattoo on my arm from another punk band, a logo/lyric combo that seriously touches my soul and all that jazz, from a band that came since then. It’s just that it’s really hard to get inspired by any sort of music “movement” since Dischord’s Revolution Summer era. Fugazi are like Bill Watterson and William Gibson, forces that inspire me to no end and are in leagues of their own.
And this little essay perfectly encapsulates why.