The skewed perspective of a conservative Catholic employee-side employment lawyer living in the most exciting city in the Milky Way, Las Vegas, Nevada USA, who listens to a lot of really strange music and who, for some reason, lives and dies St. Louis Cardinal baseball

4/20/2005

Dire Straits - "Telegraph Road"

I've reached the point in my life where I don't much like rock 'n' roll. I don't much like guitar-based rock. When it comes to listening to my college-era new favorites, I'm far more likely to listen to something synth-driven than Ramones or Buzzcocks style guitar punk. And I've never liked "guitar heros." Guitar-hero rock was never a genre I cared for. I can't appreciate an Eric Clapton solo or an Eddie Van Halen wail. I can't even appreciate Joe Strummer turning the amp up to 11. If a guitar hero does a pop song, I'm there. See, e.g., Hendrix, Jimi, "Angel."

Mark Knopfler is a prototypical guitar hero, a craftsman of his instrument. You like guitars played by virtuoso? Especially in a non-metal setting? Then Knopfler is your god and Dire Straits is your band. Their not mine. Occasionally, they do a pop song that I like, but they are not a group that I want to own a whole album of. (In fact, I once did. Brothers in Arms, of course. I got rid of it.) A few mp3 files are enough Mark Knopfler, in my estimation.

One Dire Straits song I've always (inexplicably) liked is one of their more pretentious, "Telegraph Road," a 14-plus minute track that leads off Love over Gold. The allmusic site calls this their "prog-rock" album, which normally should be enough to get me to run for the hills. The song is atmospheric and meandering, perhaps like the eponymous road at issue. Maybe I like it because I once heard it driving the backroads of Fairfax County, Virginia, listening to the late (then) great WHFS, then out of Annapolis, I think, and the song was playing over the air when I happened upon a "Telegraph Road" there in Northern Virginia (back when I really liked Northern Virginia). Great song, but not enough for me to want a whole allbum of this guitar stuff.
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