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The TRUTH Why Modern Music Is Awful

Discussion in 'music' started by DonQuixote99, Oct 6, 2018.

  1. gassor

    gassor There may be more posts after this.

    In the 60s and 70s pop music took on an unprecedented importance in people's lives, but the music itself didn't undergo any cataclysmic changes, just evolutionary development.
  2. Andrew C!

    Andrew C! Been around a while....

    I don’t think all modern mainstream music is crap. I do listen to some mainstream radio, just for something different to listen to, and in amongst stuff I’m not fussed about there is good music to pursue.

    I picked up Chris, Caravan Palace, Nakhane and St Vincent also from mainstream tv. I think it depends on your musical taste, and whether you just like what you hear or not.

    Don’t get me wrong - I have my favourite genres. But the impression that some give on here that it’s all musical doom and gloom I don’t think is quite right...
    Big Tabs likes this.
  3. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    I’d argue there was a huge amount of development in the late-60s through early 70s.

    A key factor, which should really be thrown into my posts upthread, is that popular music tends to be technology driven. The electric guitar, distortion, electric bass, multitrack recording, analogue synths, digital synths, drum machines, sequencers etc etc each all totally revolutionised the music of their time beyond recognition. Each bringing a totally new and radical sound aesthetic that existed nowhere before.

    This is one thing that has changed over recent decades. Nothing spectacularly new has appeared. What has changed radically is the price and availability, and therefore the accessibility. You can have a remarkably accurate Minimoog, even a Fairlight CMI emulator running on your iPhone! A modern entry-level DAW such as GarageBand (about £15 IIRC) is massively more powerful than anything that existed back in the ‘80s, let alone before that point, so the here shift has been in democratisation and accessibility rather than hitting us with a radical new sound-pallet.

    As someone who’s been around this technology for decades I find it beyond amazing that say Logic Pro X running on my MacBook is in just about every respect (aside from sheer number of live mixer inputs) hugely more advanced than anything say Trevor Horn had at Sarm back in the ‘80s! It is astonishing technology and enables anyone with a creative idea to produce release-ready material in their own home for peanuts.
    Andrew C! likes this.
  4. davidsrsb

    davidsrsb pfm Member

    Very true, new instruments and methods lead to several of the music waves. Nothing new has happened for decades now.
  5. Bananahead

    Bananahead pfm Member

    But we now have autotune

    "When French house duo Daft Punk was questioned about their use of Auto-Tune in their single "One More Time", Thomas Bangalter replied by saying, "A lot of people complain about musicians using Auto-Tune. It reminds me of the late '70s when musicians in France tried to ban the synthesizer... What they didn't see was that you could use those tools in a new way instead of just for replacing the instruments that came before." "
    blossomchris and Andrew C! like this.
  6. kjb

    kjb pfm Member

    An interesting article here, Following on from Tony's post above, it is not just how music is made but also how it is consumed:


    about how younger people listen to music.

    This echoed a piece on pitchfork on the demise of the i pod:


    What is interesting, to me, is that most of the pfm "favourite records" as outlined in the thread above, were made by people in their early or mid 20s. They made records to be listened to the way they listened to music - hence those lovely retro pictures of musicians surrounded by album covers.

    "Old people have never made great records." Discuss.

    The Guardian article shows that those now in their late teens and 20s live in a post physical music world. The certain applies to my kids ( aged 13 - 34) all of whom love music and none of whom have anything to play it on part from a phone, a laptop or their own instruments.

    When we think of great music it is nearly always made for replay on either vinyl or CD - this shaped the form of the recording and, in many cases, the music. Much modern music is made to stream or to listen to a track at a time and if you don't like it you can stop it and immediately move to something else. And don't forget that nearly all recorded music is commercial - its aim, as a recorded form, is to make money. This form is going to lead to music that is very different to the music we listened to when we were younger. The qualities we love from the 1960s - 1990s will only be replicated by musicians deliberately mimicing older forms.

    In some ways jazz and classical ( and possibly heavy rock) are exceptions because they are essentially live forms that have a recorded existence related to that. Music made to be streamed or downloaded a track at a time is going to conform to the restrictions of that form just as, in the past, it did to the 78, 7" single, 40 minute album or 70 minute cd. Nearly all of our favourite music was driven by its form and how it was to be consumed: things are no different now.

    There is still great music around and there are people who will be innovating with the form - the 33 rpm record was around for nearly a decade before its possibilities were fully explored ( see the journey from the first Beatles record to the White Album or Abbey Road for a case in point).

    The recorded music being made now is different because recorded music is now a different thing altogether. It is still sounds and notes but the differences in how it is made and played and listened to are greater than the similarities.

    I can still find good new music but it tends to be music which is closer to the form and sound and structure of the vinyl or CD era - say To Pimp a Butterfly - than the stuff made to stream. The new music I like is music that is made to be listened to in one sitting, at home, and owed as a physical product. That is different to much of what you will hear on radio 1 which is explicitly aimed at teens and 20 year olds and is essentially transient.

    Is modern music rubbish? For me, it's not really a valid question. Modern music is different and possibly changing in the most radical way since music moved from something that was performed live to something that could be listened to at home. I like it less, for the most part, and prefer the older forms but that doesn't mean its intrinsically rubbish. We need to wait and see what develops from it.

    One thing that is for sure is that, in 2058, a group of 50 - 60 year olds will be sitting on a forum ( or whatever all replace them) moaning that the music being made isn't as good as in the golden age of 2020.

    Big Tabs and Andrew C! like this.
  7. gassor

    gassor There may be more posts after this.

    "Old people have never made great records." Discuss.

    Johnny Cash, Leonard Cohen, Willie Nelson, Bob Dylan and John Lee Hooker would like to oppose the motion. Not coming up with any women's names though if that matters.
    Dozey likes this.
  8. blossomchris

    blossomchris I feel better than James Brown

    Music is music, please do not discuss, sorry gassor.

    Regarding your list of oldies only JC does it for me, sometimes.

  9. kjb

    kjb pfm Member

    Re gender I'd start with Lucinda Williams, PJ Harvey and Bjork - who have made good record post 45 ... but not necessarily great ones. Of those you mention only LC made his best records when he was older - Dylan's older stuff, while really good in places, doesn't compare to Blood on the Tracks or anything preceding that. I'd add Nick Cave to your list.

    Mind you, plenty of Jazz musicians have produced outstanding records later in their careers - Wadada Leo Smith, Ornette Coleman, Henry Threadgill and most people who record on ECM come to mind.

    Would any of your list above fit in your 50 best records during any Nick Hornby moment?

    And, interestingly, ( possibly with he exception of Bjork) they are still making records in the pre digital style - albums, aiming at a physical format. Unlike, say, Beyonce.
  10. Stunsworth

    Stunsworth pfm Member

    GarageBand has been free for a number of years - both Mac and iOS.
  11. Marky-Mark

    Marky-Mark pfm Member

  12. Arkless Electronics

    Arkless Electronics Trade: Amp design and repairs.

    I'd argue that the proliferation of cheap recording gear and soft synths, drum plug ins etc has made it rather too easy for the talentless "me too" aspiring "musician" to "get product out" by just using "funky drummer" samples etc, a few 3 note keyboard stabs and then talk over it real fast (don't need to be able to sing since rap!) and get something that sounds much the same as all the other dross out there of similar ilk (see charts in Marky-Marks link!). It's proliferated by so many doing this that its become "the norm".... and anything featuring good musicians playing real instruments, with a few good chord changes etc, is automatically seen as "dad music", or at least not "their" music by the teenagers!

    As an aside to this (which will no doubt get "well what did you expect" type replies), A mate and myself were in a pub with a juke box once and there was a load of 15-18 year olds in 'cos there had been a wedding do earlier. They were monopolising the juke box with the worst bubblegum dross one could name,,, Justin Bieber, Aqua, Katy Perry etc.
    As soon as some of the music we had chosen (Hendrix, Zep etc) came on they didn't even give it the benefit of the doubt and a hearing.... as soon as they heard real electric guitars, bass and a singer actually singing they were yelling "what's this shite!!??" before the first bar had finished!! Kids today eh:rolleyes:
  13. Aethelist

    Aethelist pfm Member

    A Juke Box? Do they still have them in Pubs? I'm not quite sure what I'm most amazed about

    You actually live somewhere that still has pubs? And they still have a proper Juke Box.

    Like with 7" records that can play both sides?

    I was always a "put the B side on" person back in the day. 45 years ago. Damn.

    The B side was always better.
  14. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    ...unless it was the B side of Love Will Tear Us Apart by Joy Division, which played at 33...
  15. gassor

    gassor There may be more posts after this.

    Definitely would have old Johnny Cash and Lenny Cohen if I do get round to a best 50. And while younger people usually make the best pop, there quite a number of old yins who have also done very well but not mentioned so far - Loretta Lynne, David Cosby, Elvis Costello, Bobby Womack, Billie Holiday, Tony Bennett and a host of jazz singers and players, I imagine, whose age I'm not sure about. Latter-day Robert Plant, Emmylou Harris and Bruce Springsteen also. I'm not talking about old farts* going through the motions like the Stones, Iggy Pop and Van Morrison or the oldies going on 'revival' or reunion tours, but those who are making genuinely good and often challenging music.

    * Maybe should have said performers (and there are a lot of them), but they are going through the motions these days.
  16. Aethelist

    Aethelist pfm Member

    Yeah but that was much much later.

    I'm talking Whiskey in the Jar , Roxy Music, Hula Kula or whatever.
  17. Aethelist

    Aethelist pfm Member

    And the looks on their faces when you put the B side on to this....

  18. Martyn Miles

    Martyn Miles pfm Member

    Well, a lot of people like Lady Gaga.
    Can’t stand her, or her singing.

    I liked Cilla.
    We’re all different...
  19. blossomchris

    blossomchris I feel better than James Brown

    These are the worst of the bunch along with tribute acts.

  20. gassor

    gassor There may be more posts after this.

    Some tribute acts put more passion into their performance than the originals. Watched Echo and the Bunnymen on Jools and thought what is the point, apart from the topping up the pension fund? In their hay day they would have sneered vociferously at bands doing the same thing.

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