My Formative Albums Of The OO’s No 5: The Strokes – Is This It
It was fun to grow up in the 00’s garage rock explosion.
For too long I had sat in my room and plied my ears with earnest indie and metal or loud, brash punk and hardcore. And then came a rush of sexy, revelatory albums that allowed a generation of indie kids a chance to do something they had been denied for years: dance.
A group of albums were released within the same block of a few years that really united youths across the UK, and seemed like a proper musical movement for a while. In particular, The White Stripes’ White Blood Cells, The Vines Highly Evolved, Yeah Yeah Yeah’s Fever To Tell and later Kings Of Leon’s Holy Roller Novocaine EP all featured heavily in pushing danceable guitar based rock back into the mainstream once and for all, and in the process destroying the concept of ‘indie’ bands as the majors scrambled to sign any scruffy axe-wielding Strokes-wannabes they could find.
But of all the records released at that time, Is This It stands as the greatest front to back album of them all. Eleven tracks of unskippable funky blues rock, with added grainy vocals and searing solos. I won’t babble on for too long about this one, as there can’t be many music blog readers that haven’t listened to it at least once. I myself was totally obsessed with it for about a year, and the band are still trying to top it two albums later.
This record is the sound of young 20-somethings having fun and getting drunk: the epitome of rock’s great inspirations.