5 Reasons Why Take That are NOT The Modern Beatles.
I am a little concerned by the current wave of nostalgia that sets out to lift Take That from being a “better Westlife” to purveyors of “defining musical statements”. The misguided attempts to peg Gary Barlow as a modern day “Lennon/McCartney” rather than just a singing Stock/Aitken/Waterman, and (most shuddering of all) the phrase “90’s Beatles”.
This trend surely stems from the current lack of a great pop band, as well as the fact Take That aren’t actually THAT bad. They have the hooks, they have choruses and they (occasionally) play instruments. Their formulaic nature may be better suited to a “megamix” rather than an album, but they remain pretty much inoffensive. It is this safeness that I have a problem with. The best pop music finds a boundary, and then steps over it. Take That can’t even see the boundary.
Rock music rebelled against easy listening, punk rebelled against Prog, Synth pop rejected traditional instruments, rap introduced a new vocal delivery and Dance removed the need for vocals at all. Pop music has always found ways to overhaul the old guard, and strike out in new directions. Clinging onto to Take That may feel comforting now, but we need to cast them adrift soon before the future rises up and tramples all over them.
And finally? Well here are 5 reasons Take That are NOT the Beatles
- The Beatles experimented heavily and produced remarkable works like the White Album and Revolver. They shaped and constantly pushed forward the concept of “pop music” in a way that still influences 100’s of artists to this day.
- Take That experimented with wearing baggy trousers during the 90s.
- The Beatles collaborated with Ravi Shankar, introducing world music sounds to a western pop audience.
- Gary Barlow wants to duet with Cheryl Cole.
- John Lennon advocated peace and challenged both religion and authority. His actions lead to well documented FBI surveillance, and (debatably) his assassination.
- Robbie Williams believes he is stalked by UFO’s.
- The Beatles produced a number of interested and original films. Pushing the boundaries of what is expected from a musician, and predating the pop promo by 20 years.
- Gary Barlow is a judge on the X factor.
- The Beatles were introduced to each other on the Liverpool skiffle scene. They maintained control of their own artistic output, lead by three of the greatest songwriters of all time.
- Take That were manufactured in a board room.