- They are headlining Pitchfork's own SXSW party at Emo's
- Tastemaker indie station KEXP has booked the band on their live broadcast on Thursday
- Stereogum noted in January that they were the "hot NYC ticket this month"—New York being, let's face it, a harbinger of SXSW reception
As much as we would all like to just ignore the whole "buzz band" phenomenon -- to chalk it up (correctly) to the meaningless machinations of a press in need of a story -- the fact is that those decisions matter. They matter in terms of what bands get played, what bands get signed, what bands get associated with indie rock as a genre. Whether we like it or not, the sound of the "buzz band" gets attributed to us, in terms of what we supposedly like. We, the indie-rock fans, suffer when the buzz band is bad.
Which brings us to the question: Do we want Peter Bjorn and John to be hailed as the standard bearers for a whole genre of music? And the answer is: NO WAY. As I acknowledged in the previous post, "Young Folks" was catchy and harmless, but this band is not a significant band. Peter Bjorn and John must be stopped.
And we can do it. As admittedly cheesy as this may sound, if there's one thing that blogs (and consumer-generated media more generally) have taught us in the last few years, it's that those of us who try hard enough really can affect the culture, even if we never get some big cultural institution to back us up. This has been especially true with indie rock.
We make these bands ourselves, online, though our posts, listens, downloads, and links. If we want to take them down, we can. In the case of Peter Bjorn and John, we must.
As for how, I will get into that in the next post.