Savages’ Jehnny Beth calls Viv Albertine’s criticism of modern music ‘naive and dismissive’

The former Slits member previously said music has become 'bread-and-circus entertainment'

Savages singer Jehnny Beth has responded to Viv Albertine’s recent comments that music has become “bread-and-circus entertainment”.

The punk icon, best known as the guitarist in The Slits, recently told Channel 4 that music was not the medium she would choose to express herself if she wanted to change the world.

In reply to a question about whether music could still be revolutionary, Albertine added: “I always put myself in the place that I think is the most exciting. Now I’d probably be studying for a science degree and be some sort of human rights lawyer. I think music has actually become a bit bread-and-circus entertainment now.”

But Jehnny Beth has called Albertine’s viewpoint “naive and dismissive”, comparing it to “listening to an old parent dragging every member of their family into depression”.

Writing on her blog, Beth said: “I think Viv Albertine is mistaken in her judgement when she speaks about music today… When I hear that generation talk this way, it feels like listening to an old parent dragging every member of their family into depression. I hear fear and confusion. Someone who’d rather say the world is ending than facing his own end.”

She added: “Assuming that music can’t be rebellious anymore is to deny the very essence of music, its primal, raw, true power, which existed long before Punk arrived in the UK and will outlive us all. This is to me the great danger: to assume that rebellion in music starts and ends with the Punk era. To be honest, I find her comment a bit naive and dismissive. Although I’m sure nobody young out there is stupid enough to take this prediction seriously. Actually I’m pretty sure none are listening! Maybe Viv has been underestimating the youth after all.”

Albertine’s comments come following the release of her new book Clothes, Clothes, Clothes. Music, Music, Music. Boys, Boys, Boys, which was published in May.

Savages, meanwhile, recently released a one-track record with Bo Ningen consisting of a 37-minute simultaneous sonic poem.

Watch Viv Albertine’s Channel 4 interview in full below: