feature: aidan connell (ex-melody nelson) declares “i hate rock’n’roll” in his latest single #soundcheck

August 4, 2014

Rock musicians have always had a love / hate relationship with rock. How many musicians have declared rock and roll / punk / emo / indie / garage dead over the past 50 years? And yet there’s something about the bare simplicity and flexibility of the sound that persists. So it’s with a hint of palpable that the students of rock history in Aidan Connel and the Noonday Parade proudly declare “I Hate Rock’n’Roll” in their latest single.

Words by Nathan Leigh, AFROPUNK Contributor

Frontman Aidan Connell (formerly of Melody Nelson) lays out a minimal but angular blues riff, while the rhythm section chimes in with a one-two stomp. It’s an intro that has its legacy in the late 60’s early 70’s heyday when the riff monsters of Zeppelin and Cream, Hendrix and Sabbath roamed the land. Connell’s voice is smooth and soulful, his melodies are as effortless as that solo is face-shredding. The song is an ode to classic rock, while the lyrics boast a contempt for rock. Melody Nelson once announced “I Hate Disco.” What genre will Connell hate next? Killyridols indeed.

On the other side of the spectrum, his recent single “Requiem For Love” overcomes its burdensome title for a brilliant piece of psychedelic Britpop along the lines of early Radiohead. His undeniably stunning voice actually seems more suited to the understated melody of “Requiem For Love” than grand rock theatrics. The band imbues a song that might otherwise have drowned in its own space with the same muscle and heft as “I Hate Rock’n’Roll.” While paying homage to the monsters of rock is a good look for Aidan Connell and co, they seem to be at their best when taking the best bits of some of rock’s best and most disparate eras and pasting them together. It’s in finding novel combinations of old pieces that the truly new and unique arises.