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Topic: The Music Thread

Posts 981 to 1,000 of 1,165

johncalmc

I have a tendency to randomly binge a certain type of music for two or three days before moving on to something else. So like two weeks ago it was modern remixes of old jazz songs/electroswing, and then last week I just listened to Pixies a lot, and now I've somehow fallen into a Psytrance and Progressive Trance rabbit hole and there's no end in sight.

johncalmc

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nessisonett

@johncalmc You’ve pretty much described my average week. Niche earwormy genre into comforting indie rock into trance/rave perfect for the weekend. I should probably just make a playlist with 99 copies of Move Any Mountain by The Shamen and one rogue Nickelback song. Save the hassle.

Socks before or after trousers, but never socks before pants, that's the rule. Makes a man look scary, like a chicken.

Black Lives Matter. Enough is enough.

TheBrandedSwordsman

@Jimmer-jammer That's fine, well, why don't you try Nerija, they are a jazz collective and might be more up your street now that I've introduced you to the genre? Let me know what you think. Got any recommendations for me in return?

"Ten thousand toadstools, with right purchase, could lift a man, I suppose. But what good would it do?"

PSN: Draco_V_Ecliptic

TheBrandedSwordsman

@nessisonett What do you think of cats like John McLaughlin and Al DiMeola in jazz, who just shred? Think there's a place for them in that genre as well as the more traditional-
style players?

"Ten thousand toadstools, with right purchase, could lift a man, I suppose. But what good would it do?"

PSN: Draco_V_Ecliptic

Th3solution

I’ve been more and more gravitating to older music. And when I say older, I mean 50’s-80’s. I’m not sure if it’s just me being an “old soul” born in the wrong era, or maybe my upbringing of having my parents expose me to older tunes, or maybe it’s that legitimately modern music objectively sucks. Whatever it is, I just suspect that in 50 years when our kids and grandkids look back and ask the question “What were the big hits of the 2020’s?” that the Spotify (or whatever the means of listening to music will be... probably a microchip in our brains that connects it to some global wireless interface controlled by Google... but I digress) playlist will pull up a bunch of random garbage that no one has really heard of since or cares about anymore. Whereas I can just pull up the list for any one random year from previous decades and find loads of classics — for example, pull up “Best of Rock 1965” and you have enormous monumental hits from The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, Simon & Garfunkel, The Who, James Brown, The Beach Boys, Bob Dylan... and on and on with songs you hear over and over like “I Can’t Get No (Satisfaction)” or “My Generation” or “I Got You (I Feel Good)”... songs that still surface in pop culture repeatedly on TV commercials, movies, and are remade by modern artists. And that’s just from one single year! What will we remember about the music that came out in 2021? I can’t even think of one classic hit that we’ll be remembering from the last year. I pulled a list of best rock from 1990-2020 (30 years worth!) and it was full of forgettable garbage. There are a few standouts like Imagine Dragons, Green Day, or Coldplay that might have some songs with staying power into the next few generations, but not much.

Now I realize these thoughts are the epitome of subjective opinion, but objectively speaking, I really feel like there is much less penetration of modern pop music into a ubiquitous societal sphere of influence. Perhaps some of it isn’t a lack of musical talent or creativity available in the last 20 years, rather the change in the way we consume our music. With streaming and YouTube, we just don’t have the widespread exposure to the same radio songs and albums like there was in the past. Perhaps if Spotify and YouTube were a thing back in the 60’s then The Beatles would have been drown out by the chaos of a million other artists vying for airtime. Or, perhaps the tunes of Roddy Ricch and Doja Cat will live on as classic signposts of popular music for the next 50 years that our grandchildren will be playing over and over, but something tells me probably not. I don’t know. Any thoughts?

Edited on by Th3solution

The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

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nessisonett

@Th3solution I honestly think that just as much good music comes out now as back in the day. We’re also in a better place as consumers, in that we have the tools to sift through what’s pushed by the labels. Back in the 50s, people like Elvis were ten-a-penny, you couldn’t move without being swamped by rock and roll copycats. Same as the 80s, Stock Aitken Waterman produced millions of artists who all sounded the same to the point that almost all diversity was wiped out in the UK. We have a lot more access to a lot more varied music without having to keep up with the underground scene. As much as I’m not a big fan of Pitchfork, websites like that will show you that there’s a whole lot of music these days which is both popular and groundbreaking.

Socks before or after trousers, but never socks before pants, that's the rule. Makes a man look scary, like a chicken.

Black Lives Matter. Enough is enough.

Th3solution

@nessisonett I think you might be right, and initially I felt like current music would be even better than the stuff of yesteryear due to increased access to technology, things like GarageBand and even Dreams where the barrier to entry is negligible for everyone to become a music creator. More music means more quality, I would suspect. However, that theory just doesn’t seem to translate into my reality. My personal experience is that I can’t seem to find any current artists that are producing transcendent quality. But it’s a needle-in-a-haystack type of issue too.

The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

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Th3solution

@nessisonett (Sorry for the double post 😄) And really, it’s the same phenomenon with TV, movies, and video games well. We have so much access to entertainment now that the quality products are “better” (if we can label art in such a way) but are drowned out by mediocrity. I mean, is Super Mario Bros 3 better than Assassin’s Creed Valhalla? Heck, is The Legend of Zelda better than Days Gone? Is Casablanca better than Tenet? Is Modern Family better than The Brady Bunch? I feel like the best creative products of each generation are probably of similar quality, and likely even better than prior generations due to the evolution of technology, but there’s just so much more of poor quality that it makes it hard to judge.

The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

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nessisonett

@Th3solution Oh absolutely, while there are probably more great albums, TV shows, movies, games etc, there’s a lot more mediocrity. But then that might not even be true as the whole Atari situation and the many dreadful licensed NES games speak to a level of over saturation back then too.

Socks before or after trousers, but never socks before pants, that's the rule. Makes a man look scary, like a chicken.

Black Lives Matter. Enough is enough.

Jimmer-jammer

@Th3solution @nessisonett
Really interesting discussion, guys!

Objectively speaking, popular music has always been a reflection of society. I think that, post WWII, with the advent of radio and television further commercializing music, the 60’s to 80’s was a sweet spot in music history where trailblazing artists such as The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, Bob Dylan and Led Zeppelin (to name a few), unbound by the chains of ‘genre‘ and combined with widespread teenage/societal angst, were able to produce truly original music with staying power through a streamlined form of exposure along with significant cultural instability. Beyond being “the firsts”, this was a perfect recipe for the powerful force that is nostalgia.

As the music industry became more about money, it became more about genre and formula. You rarely hear 7 minute progressive epics on the radio outside of that era. I wonder why?

Today, the internet has blown the music industry up, for better and worse. Over saturation is an incredibly valid point. There is so much out there, and in the ADD age of playlists and 30 second TikToks, nothing is given a chance to breathe culturally. Objectively speaking, popular music has always been a reflection of society.

True genuineness actually puts people off. The only way to combat this is with time. Stay true, and one time enemies may become long time friends.

LordSteev

@Th3solution I like this topic and really enjoyed your long post above. I feel the same way, and have come to a few conclusions of my own, be they rational or otherwise.

I think MTV played it's part in killing off talented musical groups. It used to be how well you can play that mattered, and MTV helped shift this towards looks and attitude over musicianship. If you dig up some old videos, pre mtv, and watch guys like Ritchie Blackmore tearing it up, heavily influenced by classical music, students of their craft, it's amazing. I can't find anyone now who is as well versed as many guitarists of the fifties through the eighties.

I think another reason might be, and this applies to far more than musicianship, into learned crafts over all fields, that we all spend more time with our gadgets these days, be it computers, phones, or whatever modern distraction tickles your fancy. This is time we humans used to spend strumming a guitar or playing a harmonica or singing or doing any other number of things. I feel like modern technology distractions might have led us astray from pastimes that required us to develop any skills.

Not just in music, either. When was the last time you saw a neighborhood football game? How many kids still read books for enjoyment? Show me a kid who knows how to whittle.

I don't know, just some random out-there thoughts. It's possible I'm not in the best frame of mind as I write this.

LordSteev

LieutenantFatman

@johncalmc
I was quite into the electroswing for a while, there are some really fun songs out there. Mostly I tend to stick with Synthwave and music in that sort of genre these days.

@Th3solution
I feel like it's an inevitable byproduct of having a much larger world population along with it being easier to publish music. There will be a lot more awful music out there, making anything amazing more difficult to find as you say.

The big companies realise what's popular often isn't the same as being good. An image that inspires younger listeners can make a fortune on its own regardless of talent or a passion to create brilliant music. That's why we have shows like X-Factor which has never actually been about music.

LieutenantFatman

Th3solution

@Jimmer-jammer Yeah, I like that point about music being a reflection of society, rather than the other way around as I was thinking about it where society’s global talent seems to be waning. Rather the talent and output is out there, it’s just in a form that reflects itself in a frankly more short-sighted and distractible way.

And to honest, going back to the classical and baroque music, the same could be said that even the modern musical classics would be considered shallow and cursory by someone living in the 1700’s.

It goes right along with what @LordSteev astutely points out that the rising generation has no time, energy, or interest in the mundane things like learning to play an instrument, much less compose a symphony like Mozart at age 8. Perhaps if little Wolfgang Amadeus had a PS5 and an iPad, he’d never have ventured into learning and writing music. Of maybe he would have produced the most awesome musical levels in Dreams, who knows. But I definitely agree that, for better or worse, the pool of music is larger but the actual number of people who are well-trained and practiced in musical performance is probably much less than 40 or 50 years ago.

And the corporate angle is definitely a factor, as pointed out by @LieutenantFatman — The struggling artist making his way in the world is likely to never be discovered based on talent alone. Money makes this world go around so he or she has to be marketable. The Idol shows were designed with that in mind; that is that talent is only part of the equation with becoming a pop star.

Edited on by Th3solution

The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

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Kidfried

I totally disagree where this discussion is going.

First: there are still people making prog rock, classical music, and whatever y'all deem is worthy of "high praise". There are also many people doing other super creative stuff, like electronic music production and vocal production, sampling old songs to come up with new ideas, or people even creating types of music that I could not have imagined to ever exist when I was young (Jenny Hval springs to mind). Basically, there's a lot more diversity and creativity.

And struggling talents? I've seen enough of them on the small local pop podiums. Some of them didn't make it, others grew out to become big stars - or less big stars.

The fact that more people have access to making music is one of the best things of our time. Brilliant people now have a chance to be recognized; even when they maybe weren't born with a silver spoon in their mouth.

No offence, but I feel like y'all are either out of touch or just too lazy yourselves to look up the brilliant stuff that's out there. Don't judge society by what you see on tv; because if that's what you are doing, then maybe you yourself are the problem of what you're arguing against.

Wanna close off with some great classical music (it's still being made)

Kidfried

nessisonett

@Kidfried Yeah, I don’t get the comparison to things like the X Factor because it’s not like The Gerogerigegege were turning up on Top of the Pops. You always have to look for music you love and the fact is that it’s easier now more than ever to do so. When artists like Weatherday can put a post on r/emo advertising their album on Bandcamp and it ends up completely blowing up, that’s a real win. There are whole genres which only came into being recently but people just seem to want to live in the past.

Socks before or after trousers, but never socks before pants, that's the rule. Makes a man look scary, like a chicken.

Black Lives Matter. Enough is enough.

Jimmer-jammer

@Kidfried I was speaking very specifically to popular music, which no longer exists as it once did. There has always been a wide array of diverse music, that hasn’t been lost and probably never will be. The love of music is incredibly subjective and there is still very high quality music being made. These things should go without saying.

The mega hits of yesteryear, along with their cultural significance, is not likely something that will be emulated again. Beatlemania is incomprehensible for people who didn’t grow up with it.

In hypothesizing the possibilities of why the mega hits of that era and their staying power seem lost to time, I stand by my post.

True genuineness actually puts people off. The only way to combat this is with time. Stay true, and one time enemies may become long time friends.

Jimmer-jammer

@TheBrandedSwordsman I’ll check it out! I have no recommendations at the moment, but when I find something I think you might fancy, I’ll let you know 👍

True genuineness actually puts people off. The only way to combat this is with time. Stay true, and one time enemies may become long time friends.

nessisonett

@Jimmer-jammer Beatlemania’s probably directly comparable to the insane fandom surrounding BTS and wider K-Pop at the minute. While the Beatles went on to create incredibly varied and fantastic music, their original album is essentially boy-band music of its time. Personally I’d say that even The Beatles’ worst stuff is better than 99% of BTS but the point still stands. I can guarantee that people in their 30s and 40s back when The Beatles first came onto the scene were moaning about the good old days and how music these days wouldn’t last the same way that the music from their childhood has.

Socks before or after trousers, but never socks before pants, that's the rule. Makes a man look scary, like a chicken.

Black Lives Matter. Enough is enough.

Th3solution

@Kidfried @nessisonett Hey my friends, I’m sorry if I came off as disrespectful and I meant no offense to the talented and hard working artisans and musicians of today. I think I struck a nerve there and it’s not my intent to pass judgment.

I was flabbergasted as to where the discussion became one which gave the impression that there was no good music to be found nowadays, so I had to go back and re-read so I could try and correct any miscommunication I may had done. As the discussion crystallized, it became clearer to my mind that my initial [admittedly harsh] observations were really mostly speaking to popular music. In other words the music that one doesn’t have to go out of his/her way to find. So the comparison was: pop music now vs pop music in past decades. Furthermore, I am very much isolated to my experience here in the U.S. I can’t speak to Europe, Asia, Africa, or elsewhere. I forget sometimes this is an international community. When I stated my aforementioned contemplations, I’m looking at Billboard top 100 lists, not the hidden jewels at the live performance coffee houses around town.

I will definitely reiterate my qualifying statement that these have been my purely subjective experiences and opinions alone, and they are admittedly ignorant. I am not a musician and I am ...’lazy’ I guess is the right word, as it relates to musical discovery (but again pop music shouldn’t need to be sought out and discovered... it’s by definition ’popular’). However, even in my casual perusal of music, I have made efforts to stretch myself to different unique experiences; for example I’ve tried to follow up on recommendations I see in this thread as well as those I receive from my in-person friends. (I literally spent a hour following YouTube links listening to concert piano music 2 days ago at the strong recommendation of a friend). I’ve spent a little time browsing the indies scene and on apps like SoundCloud. I’ve had text exchanges with friends back and forth where we send some of our favorite songs back and forth trying to expose each other to some great tunes we think the other might have never heard but would like. Unfortunately at the end of the day I don’t find a whole lot that blows me over on a regular basis through these methods, although there are some beauties out there. But as I see the response to my pontificating ramblings above, I should have never tried to speak as if this was representative of society at large. It is my experience alone and I take full responsibility for the close-mindedness represented in the opinion.

I will say that the assertion that I might be too unambitious enough to actually find the fantastic treasure trove of transcendent music being made today makes my point exactly. The fact it has to be searched for means it is unlikely to yield as much direct influence for generations to come. I’m not saying this is just or right, just that it gives off a sense that the music today isn’t as memorable as in years past. Again — this is not a criticism of the music itself nor its adoring fans. It just begs the question — why don’t we all know about this music? Why is the current Billboard top 100 filled with forgettable (....trying to not use an offensive word here...) rabble?

One of my character flaws is to be hopelessly lost in analytic thought and observational contemplation, especially as it relates to societal trends I see and so sometimes when I describe the world through my own eyes it probably comes across as judgmental (especially when I use such inflammatory words such as “sucks” and “garbage”) and I apologize for that. By no means do I claim to have any true knowledge about such things, especially music. I just like to do thought experiments and come to interesting conclusions. I’m indeed sorry that my initial post came across as otherwise. But I think if you’ll read back through my first post you’ll find that I wasn’t criticizing music such as that found in the recesses of the internet made by those who have toiled to come up with innovative and inspirational styles; rather my issue lies with the heavily accessible and popular music of today — that which is promoted, commercialized, and monetized. My adoration for older music got me thinking “What will our grandchildren say about the music of 2020?” ....and that’s where this whole discussion in my mind started. (And I’d actually love to hear your opinions on that. Not what should they think about today’s music, rather what will they say and feel about our music? Think about it. They will only know about what leaves a lasting legacy, whether that’s right or wrong, that’s reality)

I still contest that the most popular song from say, Weatherday, will not be in the hearts and ears of our grandchildren in 50 years. Maybe I’ll be wrong about that. However that is by no means an indictment of the music, nor of the artists, nor of society and the fans who like them now, nor of the society or music fans who are ignorant of Weatherday in the future. I’m not placing a value judgement on any of it and I don’t mean to say it’s not worthwhile music. I mean that it will unfortunately get lost in the sea of other music within the next several years (if not months). Nevertheless, I wouldn’t be surprised if it may serve as influential DNA to inspire some popular music in 2060.

And to clarify - I sure hope I didn’t come across as elitist, disparaging the fact that anyone with a computer can generate music and that it should be reserved for only those who can afford a grand piano or a cello along with expensive music lessons. That is absolutely not my opinion in the slightest. It is a great victory of our time to have access to music creation. Absolutely agree. Not sure why I didn’t make that clearer from the start.

Sorry for the long post but it bothered me that I upset you so. Cultural differences and personal tastes aside, I respect my Push Square brothers and sisters and don’t want to offend.

The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

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