The 2000’s rock scene was made from dull and lifeless to golden by The Strokes. Fresh from New York’s underground Lower East Side music scene, The Strokes embodied a cool, laidback, and ridiculously talented musical genre, relatively new to the repetitive, borderline pop rock and roll music emerging from the early 2000’s. Grunge had run its course, and rock rarely seemed to have a place in popular, or even quality music.
Oftentimes called “The Saviors of Rock,” The Strokes did more or less just that-save the dying genre, so vital, so historic and so wonderful that had once categorized musical giants like The Ramones, The Rolling Stones, and The Beatles. Progressive with a twist of classical, nostalgic seventies rock the Strokes brought back the cool to rock and roll. Clad in t-shirts, tuxedo jackets, worn out chucks and the usual cigarette hanging from their lips, they renovated style, blended the old with the new and most importantly created one of the most important albums of the 2000’s.
Is This It, released in 2001 is known as the band’s magnum opus, a gritty, homemade sounding masterpiece, dripping New York City cool, complete with muffled, baritone vocals and dynamic, outrageous guitar solos as heard in songs like Alone Together make this album one of the most unforgettable records of the modern age. Songs like Last Nite and Someday have made been esteemed as rock classics, and follow up album, Room on Fire, has also seen the same level of praise with songs like Reptilia, which have been immortalized in video games like Guitar Hero. With an emphasis on instrumental preciseness and sound, The Strokes are all about the music, as opposed to lyrics, videos, and other components to music, the strong focus on sound quality and chord/riff complexity make The Strokes are one of the last few bands who esteemed organic musical quality above anything else. Although the band has branched out nowadays and has tried new electronic sounds, they have continued to carry that primary focus on music as opposed to appearance or any other factor that comes with producing music.
Is This It quickly elevated the band to international stardom and made New York the breeding ground for a lot of popular musical acts to come such as Interpol, the Yeah Yeah Yeah’s as well as in Britain, The Arctic Monkeys, whose lead singer Alex Turner has acclaimed the band as one of his main musical inspirations.
The Legacy of the Strokes goes beyond introducing a new brand of alternative rock; it was about paving the way for the alternative and indie genre as a whole, for bringing back the style, and attitude to rock and roll and preserving it for many years to come.
I mean, just ask Regina George…