On Monday, the music world suffered a loss that will be overlooked by far too many: Supergrass broke up. I know they weren't especially well known over here, only coming out to tour every few years or so, but I've loved them for a long time, even going so far as to include their most recent (sigh, final) album on my best of the decade list. Perhaps ignored because of their penchant for silliness, the band went from a mashup of influences such as the Kinks and Buzzcocks to a legitimate rock force with which to be reckoned. When they released their debut, I Should Coco, in 1995, a friend of mine had heard about them from his older sister, and we would listen to "Caught by the Fuzz" and "I Don't Know" constantly. I still remember staying up until midnight on Saturdays to catch MTV's 120 Minutes video show--since it was the only place to see cool stuff that was still under the radar--hoping to catch the video for "Caught by the Fuzz." Wow, imagine MTV still being a source of interesting music!
Anyway, much like with BRMC, Supergrass is one of my favorites that still make me surprised when I label them as such. It's almost as if they've snuck up on me, but I find myself listening to them a lot. Their sound ranges from punk to Britpop to glam, with all kinds of twists thrown in. Lead singer Gaz Coombes has one of my favorite voices, and his brother Rob brings added depth with his always interesting keyboard parts. It seems kind of unfair that the only song that saw any real success stateside was "Alright," which was on the Clueless soundtrack. It was unmistakably Supergrass, and yet it wasn't really a good representation of their work as a whole. I will miss this band quite a bit, but they did put out five excellent albums (sorry, Road to Rouen!) that I can always come back to. RIP, Supergrass, you left us too soon.
Recommended listening: Diamond Hoo Ha, In it for the Money, I Should Coco, Life on Other Planets
A few videos spanning their career:
Supergrass - Caught By The Fuzz