Photo from The Strokes: The First Ten Years
There’s no way to overestimate the explosive impact The Strokes had on the early aughts music scene, especially in their own home town of NYC. Coming off an era dominated by lunkheaded, post-grunge dood rock (Creed, Nickelback), heinous pop-punk (Blink 182), and…shudder…nu-metal (Limp… oh never mind), Julian Casablancas and company’s sneering, very modern, and totally electrifying (not to mention, often drunk) take on post punk power pop was the coolest thing since “Jumpin’ Jack Flash.”
The punters reacted accordingly. And from the release of their universally adored debut album Is This It in 2001, through to a well-deserved break in 2007, the cool kids hung on their every word (and chord), and packed out every show. But playing and partying non-stop for nearly a decade, they eventually started to unravel a bit. After all, being in the hottest band in the land at 25 came with its share of intoxicating distractions.
Since 2013’s Comedown Machine, save for the 2016 Future Present Past EP, it’s been mostly side projects and solo releases for Casablancas, Albert Hammond Jr., Nikolai Fraiture, Nick Valensi and Fabrizio Moretti. Some even decamped from their beloved Gotham for more…suburban surrounds.
But you can bet the farm that we’ll be front and center for a just-announced, and sure-to-be-massive Strokes New Year’s Eve gig at the Barclays Center, part of a handful of high-profile festival shows that include Lima and Mexico City. And though those heady days are long gone (immortalized in the decadent 2017 book Meet Me in the Bathroom), and we’re arguably healthier for that, we may just have to bust out the skinny jeans and low-level intoxicants for this one.