R. Stevie Moore is cool. When was the last time you saw a 60-odd-year-old* man standing on stage shouting “where my bitches at” and repeated calls of “swag”? That kind of thing never happens.** (Though it did last night at the Noise Pop show at Bottom of the Hill with Moore, Fresh and Onlys, Plateaus, and Burnt Ones).
Whenever anyone not born prior to 1990 tries to even pronounce that word it comes out all wrong, and the best anyone else can guess is that they’ve got some bad weed, are mentioning their recent trade convention experience, or most likely misquoting a 20-year-old SNL sketch, that last one being a closer reference for the age group.
Which is just to point out that while the rest of us seem to inevitably suffer from mental stasis at a certain age, struggling with increasing brain plasticity and self-inflicted memory loss, Moore was doing a pitch perfect Tyler the Creator last night, as he continues to function as a weird pop culture sponge.***
I don’t even know if OFWGKTA is still around or if people say swag unironically at this point without checking Google Trends. And I guess that’s kind of the point, because as the powder-blue-bearded Moore worked through a small part of his extensive catalog (“He covers a lot of ground,” someone in the crowd observed in the understatement of the night), it became clear that one thing the man is isn’t hip, but he is cool.
Fashion becomes passé, quotes become tired, sic transit fucking gloria, but Moore, the consummate outsider, proves that it’s hard to go out of style when you’ve never truly been in, even as a new wave of hipper musicians like Ariel Pink follow in his footsteps.****
While Moore sang that he “likes to stay home” last night as a closer, I couldn’t help but think how little he seems to have changed since the music video*****, and be glad that he’s still out on occasion. Pretty cool.
*emphasis on “odd.”
**outside the world of recent fun.-loving Taco Bell commercials.
***or vampire, which would explain his longevity.
****and have become his collaborators.
*****compared to other iterations.