Indie coffee shop employees are in an outrage. Folk rock band Mumford & Sons has announced that they are going on hiatus. Is this the beginning of the end for the folk revival?
Mumford & Sons breaks down, this time without banjos
Mumford & Sons broke out in 2009, with their debut, Sigh No More. With hits “The Cave” and “Little Lion Man,” Mumford & Sons quickly rose to the forefront of the ever growing folk rock revival. With their second album, Babel, their popularity skyrocketed even further, winning Album of the Year at the Grammys. The band seems to be at their zenith, so why stop now?
“There won’t be any Mumford & Sons activities for the foreseeable future following Friday’s show”, the news was dropped by keyboardist Ben Lovett in an interview with Rolling Stone, and the shock wave quickly rocked the needles of every Urban Outfitters brand turntable. Later in the interview Lovett said, “These shows take a bit more out of us,”. “We have a bigger responsibility to be in better form. We can’t be dropping the set 20 minutes because Marcus has tired legs.” Additionally, it was recently revealed that bassist Ted Dwane had surgery for a blood clot in his brain. Currently, the band hasn’t said that this hiatus is due to conflict within the band, so it doesn’t seem as if Mumford & Sons is completely done, just put on pause.
Alright, opinion time!
This is the point of the program where I stop talking like a journalist. In my opinion, this “folk rock revival” should be re-titled exactly what it is, corporate folk. Record companies saw the growing hipster trend and decided it to make some money off of it. But it’s not just Mumford & Sons, bands like: Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Of Monsters and Men, The Lumineers, The Civil Wars, Alabama Shakes, and Grouplove, all encompass the genre that I call corporate folk. Listen people, I’m not saying it’s all bad, it’s just getting really boring, and overrated. Recently, I went to the fabulous Raglan Road Irish Pub in Downtown Disney. There’s a folk cover band there that play while you eat. Here’s the thing, they played three Mumford & Sons songs. Mumford & Sons is not even Irish! And, they introduced the songs with, “Here is a song by the legendary Mumford & Sons.” Okay nice, this is alright… wait a second. LEGENDARY! Excuse me, Mr. Cover Band Man, you’re jumping the gun a little.
Here’s the thing, Folk music in the 60’s was about counter-culture, it was an anti-war, anti-establishment middle finger to the man. Bands like Mumford & Sons just don’t have that spirit of angst to them. All they want to do is sit on a blanket and write love songs, not that there’s anything wrong with that, but its not like there isn’t war and injustices to sing about. It’s not that I hate this music, if I hear a Mumford & Sons song at restaurant I’m not like, “OH MY GOD, WHAT IS THIS SHIT?!”, but after a while all the Mumford & Sons, The Lumineers, and Of Monsters and Men songs sounds the same. Hell, even every Mumford & Sons song sounds the same. Slow coming in, then boom! banjo breakdown. I hear American Apparel slaves complaining all the time about the dubstep breakdown cliche, but the same cliches are here too. The dress: beards, overalls, suspenders, upright basses, lack of shoes, and flannel. What I will give Mumford & Sons credit for is being able to make fun of themselves, check out the video for “Hopeless Wanderer”, you will laugh. They even know it’s getting old.
Watch The Needle Drop review Babel!
Listen to Mumford & Sons on Spotify!