x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 January 2018

More overated music acts


The most cannily marketed band of the past two decades pretend they’re above commerce while sating themselves fully on their gullible fans’ appetites. The box set for 2007’s In Rainbows, for example, set fans back around US$80 (Dh294). So much for a pay-what-you-want album. As the guitarist Ed O’Brien has said: “We sell less records, but we make more money.” And when was the last time you found yourself humming a Radiohead song written this century?


Let’s get this straight – Nirvana were glorified one-hit wonders. Smells Like Teen Spirit was a freak, albeit a wondrous, magical one. They only wrote two more decent songs – Frances Farmer Will Have Her Revenge on Seattle (from In Utero) and Oh, The Guilt (a limited-edition split single with Jesus Lizard). And then Kurt Cobain died. Deification followed.

Queens of the Stone Age

They’ve written one great song (Feel Good Hit of the Summer) but tend to rely on glowering guitar lines and their much-touted but actually drab desert soundscapes to make up for their otherwise total lack of melodic chops. Possibly the most overrated band ever.

Red Hot Chili Peppers

Red Hot Chili Peppers have only ever been any good when the drug casualty John Frusciante was involved in their songwriting. From Under the Bridge to The Zephyr Song all the best Chili Peppers songs have been at least partially written by the otherworldly Frusciante. Without him, unfortunately, they’re just a terrible middle-aged white funk band.

Florence + the Machine

Florence Welch certainly has a successful formula, one which she steadfastly refuses to alter. Write utterly meaningless lyrics, which you then yell and moan at the top of your voice while your band fills every available gap with a storm of synths and a wail of strings. Have a chorus bit, which doesn’t actually feature real words. Repeat ad nauseam.