Battle of the loser bands: DiG!

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Oct. 8 2004 2:01 PM

Battle of the Loser Bands

How to fail at alternative rock: DiG!

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Newcombe may not realize how prophetic his band's name turned out to be, because he's repeatedly sacrificed his career to an indefinable ideal of cool. It's as if Brian Jones himself is dispensing the Kool-Aid and Newcombe is first in line to take a drink.

After we're numb from Newcombe's long, slow descent, we finally get a small moment of emotional redemption. The Dandy Warhols headline England's Reading Festival and 60,000 kids wildly sing along to "Bohemian Like You." It may not be a great song—or one you'll remember three minutes after you leave the theater—but it's a powerful reminder of just what music is for, and it explodes all of the navel-gazing and infighting in one precious moment of redemption.

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Brian Jones would not find it cool.

James Barber is a record producer and writer living in Los Angeles.