Catchphrases

“That’s not music, that’s just noise” (and similar phrases)

Maybe I’m getting old. I have taken to repeating some of the phrases that old people have traditionally used about young people, and about how the world has changed, and my use of these phrases is not always for comic effect.

“That’s not music, that’s just noise” is probably the closest to home. I first used it in the 1990s in discussions (for want of a better word) about a certain type of dance music. And I love noise, have done for over 40 years, from buying my first Led Zeppelin albums, through punk, to countless repetitive guitar-based acts that my older brother didn’t like. The Fall come to mind. Come to think of it, he might have used the phrase back in the 1980s to describe some of things I listened to back then, when we still shared a room. As I have noted many times on these pages, he has lived in Spain since the 1980s, but his reasons for moving there were not connected to our different musical tastes.

“I remember when this was all fields” is a phrase I can use in an accurate way whenever I visit my brother in Spain. The land behind the house that his wife grew up in, on the edge of a town between Alicante and Murcia, is now home to blocks of flats and a network of roads that didn’t exist 35 years ago. I really do remember it when it was all fields.

I haven’t yet taken to saying “We had to make our own entertainment when we were young” or “Young people today, they’ve got no respect” but maybe it’s only a matter of time.

 

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