Talking with T.S. Eliot about rockism

Franklin Bruno (songwriter/poet/former leader of Nothing Painted Blue) sounds kind of sad and confused about everyone (read: Sasha Frere-Jones of the New Yorker and Kelefa Sanneh of the New York Times, who are not literally everyone but who combined can certainly move the ball down the field) bagging on indie rock. The estimable Mr. B. (last seen, by me at least, playing with John 'Mountain Goats' Darnielle in the Extra Glenns) writes:

Look: Between 1990 and now, I’ve made about 11 full-lengths (plus however many CD-EPs, Shrimper cassettes, 7”s). I can’t see any way out of understanding them as indie-rock that does not involve even more sophistry than I managed to master on my way to a doctorate. (Though oddly, the generic facts failed to convince many “indie-rock obsessives” to direct their custom our way. One problem was that our rhythm section weren’t loadies.) [I'm not sure what this means; my best guess is that it's a typo for 'ladies.' -- gr.] I don’t think one of them has sold more than 4,000, and I’m embarrassed to tell you how few others have. With a couple of exceptions related to playing w/ kindly headliners, I don’t believe I’ve ever been paid more than $400 for a show. I enjoyed the years of heavy activity, felt poor-but-honest most of the time, but I also think I was a bit of a sucker in some respects that I won’t go into here. In any case, it’s difficult for me see how I can avoid instantiating a conclusion or at least implication of pieces like K.’s, and SFJ’s EMP piece can be entirely avoided:

You, Franklin Bruno, as an exemplar of what we’re talking about: Your records (a) suck, (b) do harm. And given who you are and what you come from, it is quite unlikely that those you make in the future will do otherwise. And curiously, part of what actually makes your music bad is that enough people do not enjoy it.
The emerging critical consensus (real or imagined) that FB is referring to here is that indie rock is a bohemia that became hegemonic without achieving popular success -- that it got elected president by the rockcrit Supreme Court, if you like. This is a real argument, but one that goes way beyond this little playground: you could apply it to any (critically esteemed) example of high Modernism.

What I would really like, though, is an artistic defence of indie rock, one that helps me explain why I get so excited about it that goes beyond 'because you are white and middle-class and were born in 1973.'