Jesse Jarnow: Big Day Coming: Yo La Tengo and the Rise of Indie Rock (Gotham) | Under The Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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Jesse Jarnow

Big Day Coming: Yo La Tengo and the Rise of Indie Rock

Published by Gotham

Oct 03, 2012 Issue #42 - The Protest Issue Bookmark and Share

Maybe Yo La Tengo never saw the commercial spikes enjoyed by a few of their peers over the years, but their storied longevity posits the trio as likely more worthy of a full bio than the many bands they saw flash and fade.

Big Day Coming carefully tracks the formation and progress of the band while detailing the evolution of indie rock and the college radio boom along the way, and Jarnow’s coverage of the latter’s parallel development is absorbing. Beginning with singer/guitarist Ira Kaplan’s early days as a music journalist, we follow the group’s trajectory while picking up on insights into intersecting topics such as Matador Records’ initial difficulty with handling Pavement’s sudden success and the influence of the Lollapalooza festival. And when the Hoboken heroes cracked the Billboard Top 200 album chart in 2000 it had to be worth being mispromoted earlier as “Wo La Tengo.”


Author rating: 7/10

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