In the past few weeks, two of 2018’s most anticipated rock albums have been released: Trench by Twenty One Pilots and Anthem of the Peaceful Army by Greta Van Fleet. In my review of Trench, I noted that Twenty One Pilots have created a deep and fascinating mythology that extends over several albums, while also creating mild, kind of bland music that’s been hugely successful on streaming platforms. If Twenty One Pilots epitomize the trends that dominate pop in the current moment, Greta Van Fleet is a conscious throwback to the classic-rock past. The group is shamelessly derivative of Led Zeppelin, but is it possible to be good at imitation? For this episode, I invited my friend and Celebration Rock producer Derek Madden to discuss these albums. Turns out that we don’t quite see eye-to-eye: Derek likes Twenty One Pilots more than I do, and he also can’t quite excuse Greta Van Fleet’s “borrowing” of Zeppelin’s sound. Who’s right? Listen to us politely disagree!
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