“The most frustrating aspect of being a rock critic nowadays is having to make recommendations for certain bands, or assumptions of a given artist’s influences, based entirely on the classic rock they probably cut their teeth on. Knowing that today’s audiences, more likely than not, grew up on the same Dad Rock that their favorite bands still groove on and talk about among peers, indicates a kind of circular logic with records that makes it difficult (or easy, depending upon the artist, really) to judge a record on its own merits. Not to mention say that a given band is “our generations’” answer to Artist X.
The Hold Steady and Arcade Fire are neck-to-neck in the race to see who will be the next Bruce Springsteen & the E-Street Band; Kevin Barnes is ready to assume themselves as the new Ziggy-era Bowie; and Man Man make a case that maybe Captain Beefheart’s stuff could have been somewhat accessible at some point. Dr. Dog, however, manage to stand above the fray by going for broke for everything at once, and just want to be your new favorite band. [...]”