Stuck in the Past: The Moondoggies and the Maldives
by Dave Segal
on Sat, Dec 14, 2013 at 11:45 AM
(Neumos) Some things I'll never understand: intelligent people who smoke cigarettes; folks who take Sarah Palin seriously; how anyone can convert the 7–10 split; and the bubbly enthusiasm many Northwesterners have for the bland country rock of the Moondoggies and the Maldives. These Seattle bands are not bad, by any means, but they're honor-bound to a tradition mired in aesthetic conservativism. Sure, they're great players and singers who seem sincere in their appreciation for this dusty, twangy, wistful music, and they're probably nice people who vote, recycle, and pay their bills on time. But the Moondoggies and the Maldives represent to this listener a pernicious sort of nostalgia for a musical style that was never thrilling to begin with. Most bands bear influences and draw inspiration from the past, obviously, but it's what music you absorb and how you assimilate and combine your influences that sets the interesting, exciting artists apart from the well-meaning but dull epigones. The Moondoggies and the Maldives fall into the latter category. We don't need another Poco, y'all.