Wednesday, November 6th, 2019

Echosmith – Lonely Generation

Keeping up with the memes of today…


Tobi Tella: Echosmith has had “I was born in the wrong generation!” energy since “Cool Kids,” but this is taking it to a new level. I don’t necessarily disagree with the ideas they’re conveying, but it’s baby’s first social commentary.

Katherine St Asaph: A consequence of the accelerating hell-sorting of the music industry into megastars and nobodies is what artists can get away with. In particular, listeners often accept earnestness, of the “we’re the lonely generation, a pixelated version of ourselves” sort, from artists who’ve “earned it,” i.e., the megastars; they reserve the scorn for midlist artists like Echosmith. The verses of “Lonely Generation” actually get right something that a lot of generational-technological plaints get wrong: From the lyrics to the melody’s wistful sweep, they’re written as mournful from within the titular generation, rather than scolding from outside it. Then the chorus decides the cure for generational loneliness is to join the other kids with their pumped-up kicks.

Alfred Soto: I’m not sure whom they’re imitating, but the possibility that Foster the People comes up on the list wouldn’t shock me.

Kayla Beardslee: Everything about this feels empty: the vocals (did the singer record the chorus two feet from the mic?), the instrumental (basic, plinking riff and guitar on autopilot), the lack of energy in the chorus, and especially the lyrics (yeah, we’re in the Digital Age and have been for a while). I feel kind of bad trashing this track, because there’s clearly meaningful sentiment behind it, but “phone bad” hasn’t been an interesting take for years, if it ever was.

Kylo Nocom: “Not a cell phone in sight, everyone’s just vibing” set to song.

Ian Mathers: Generations are bunk, but according to the numbers I’m a millennial myself (if barely) and I have plenty of younger friends. I’m pretty sure at least most of them would agree with me that this is just crying out for the equivalent of “ok boomer.”

Alex Clifton: I know they’re all millennials/Gen Z kids, but: ok boomer.

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