Pete Kendall's Socio Times: A Socionomic Commentary

September 14, 2006
The Phonics of Pop
Keane (Keen) -- British pop band known for Coldplay-like melodies and the soaring angelic vocals of singer Tom Chaplin, who is currently in rehab. New song "Is It Any Wonder" prominently featured in Madden '07.
Richmond Times Dispatch

"Is It Any Wonder?"
I always thought that I knew
I'd always have the right to
Be living in the kingdom of the good and true And so on But now I think I was wrong And you were laughing along And now I look a fool for thinking you were on, my side

Is it any wonder that I'm tired?
Is it any wonder that I feel uptight?
Is it any wonder I don't know what's right?
Is it any wonder I don't know what's right Oh these days?
After all the misery made
Is it any wonder that I feel afraid?
Is it any wonder that I feel betrayed?

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British Rockers Get Tuned In to the Bear Market Beat
Category: MUSIC
By: Pete Kendall, September 18, 2006
50 Cents' more bearish vibe did not dominate in 2005, but its only one position away from the top spot. Even more bearish musical forms will probably move to the fore in the next decline.
Sociotimes, January 5, 2006
UTISKeane is an "alternative" band, the genre of which has been linked socionomically to bear market psychology. The song was first published on the album "Under the Iron Sea" in June, 2006: right after the US market tops in May.

On their official website, the band replies to a question from a listener:
"I hope I haven't missed something too obvious, but... can you explain why 'Under The Iron Sea' seems to be divided into two sections? The artwork seems to indicate this with the songs printed in different colors, and there is an instrumental break right at the same point. Thanks.
-- a fan

"Tom replies: When we came up with the tracklisting we felt the album fell into two parts. The first half is a very blatant insight into a lot of our darkest thoughts, experiences and fears. The second half is introduced by the atmospherics of 'The Iron Sea' before going into a more magical fairytale world gone wrong. We thought it would be good to have it like an old vinyl record with two sides in a literal and artistic sense."

"... World gone wrong..." I thought the genre, timing, and sudden wildfire-like popularity of this song was particularly interesting. The lyrics pretty much spell (or sing) it out, don't they?
--Ian Gallimore

Pretty much. Another intriguing aspect is that the band appears to be keeping the beat of social mood on a short term basis as well. The album was No. 1 on the U.K. charts in mid-June when stocks hit their lows for the year. It's fallen back to No. 25 in the latest week as the stock market rallied. In August, when the summer rally was in mid-stride, band member Tom Chaplin entered rehab causing the band to cancel a planned U.S. tour. The band’s first album came out in 2004 and was an upbeat, if “slightly dark,” pop effort. The band described the making of “Under the Iron Sea” as an effort to "confront all our worst fears, to ruthlessly scrutinise ourselves, our relationships with each other, with other people, and with the world at large, and to make a journey into the darkest places we could find…We were writing, singing and performing with a drive, intensity and fury that is almost unrecognisable from our previous music." Another reviewer says Keane's second album "lives up to its billing.” As the Beatles demonstrated in the late 1960s, the transition to the dark side of social mood tends to take a heavy toll, but it can be extremely lucrative to those few pop impresarios that  can find the rhythm of the bear trend. As The Elliott Wave Financial Forecast, explained in February 2002 (see Additional References section to the January 5 Socio Times entry), some, like the Beatles, can pull it off and some, like Brittany Spears, in 2000 cannot.

Hi Pete,
You state: "Band member Tom Chaplin entered rehab causing the band to cancel a planned U.S. tour." It just dawned on me when reading this that usually the bull market lolly-pop stars just sort of fade away. It's the bear market stars that are all wrapped up in habits like drug abuse, reckless driving, suicide, etc. Many talented artists end up dead because of what sells. They are almost rewarded for their anti-social behavior and it eventually kills many of them. i.e. Jimmy Hendrix, Bon Scott (AC/DC), Kurt Cobain (Nirvana)etc. Am I correct in assuming that over the next 10 years we will start seing a rash of dead musicians again?

Back in the September 1985 when the stock market was about to take off, I can remember talking with Bob Prechter about this phenomenon. Of course, at the time, the observation went the other way. The confirming fundamental of a new long-term uptrend was that rock stars just weren't dropping off like the were in the 1970s. So yes, I think we'll see more of celebrities cut down in the prime of their fame in the future. Part of it is what audiences demand, but it's got to do with the parts of themselves artist chose to explore. In the case of Chaplin, for instance, he clearly states that he had to force himself into a gloomy emotional place in order to create his latest hits.

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