Thursday, February 19, 2009

Why Must New (Rock) Music Suck?

I remember when rock was cool. I remember sex, drugs, and Rock & Roll. I remember novelty- you could have Led Zeppelin, Devo, or U2 (back when Brian Eno made them sound good). Hell, even Rap looked like it had serious potential then. I'll go so far as to say Public Enemy was as meaningful and as passionate as Bob Dylan. Seriously. Whatever your tastes, there was something interesting. There was a lot of pop shlock too- lest we forget The Go-Go's or Huey Fucking Lewis. Tom Petty came along and at first I thought he was some ersatz Neal Young- Half the "twang" and twice the mumble, and he made a fucking career out of power chords. In hindsight, I think this was the end of interesting music.

There are many reasons I think why music sucks anymore, and not all of it has to do with the artists. There is a real serious dearth of engineers, or they are being controlled by the 'tards in charge of the labels. There is some fucked up stunt that is being performed on music to make it sound... wrong. Unnatural. Something... Bad.

They are fucking with the EQ levels to make the music have more of a constant noise and increase the volume overall. It's measurable- look:

AC/DC's Back In Black. Few would argue this is NOT a pumping Rock song with ample beat/emphasis. (click to embiggen)

Now, observe The Ordinary Boys "Boys Will Be Boys", a good song murdered by modern music treatment.

Note the difference? The AC/DC is four minutes and change, and the Ordinary Boys is under three, but the scaling is about a match. You can see how they are fucking it all up. The Ordinary Boys song is not a natural sound pattern, and this shit is endemic, and it pisses me off.

On top of all this, I can't find any Rock that makes me tap my toes. Pandora and the iTunes "Genius" are not helping. Whatever happened to serious fucking Rock & Roll? Even the cited Ordinary Boys sound wussified and emo to my ear. I need songs about fucking, with a tempo that makes me want to commit a crime. Remember? Like Rock used to be?

Maybe Rock was never that good- maybe it was all the sex and drugs. I can't remember.


Blogger Scott from Oregon said...

Road trips always bring on the "classic rock" stations.

These bring on the same nostalgic realizations you just had.

Here are a few observations--

We don't have very many "manly" voices anymore. Think Doby Gray, Bog Seger, Cocker, etc...

We've moved into an "Usher" age... Ewwww...

We're running out of licks. Writers are finding it hard to be original anymore, due to the vastness of what's come before. Everything sounds like something, so music is trapped into trying too hard to be original.

Once you get beyond the age of locking yourself in your room with a blacklight, you lose the ability to make music visceral. All your visceral days are behind you, locked in that room...

Yaddy yaddy...

10:13 AM  
Blogger meno said...

Kids these days. They just don't know how to make music like they did when i was young.

And hey, you kids get offa my lawn.

2:00 PM  
Blogger Gordo said...

That's the same treatment that the audio on tv commercials get: it's not actually louder than the shows, but it sure is processed to crap to sound that way.

Modern "rock" music IS a frigging wasteland, isn't it? Sigh

5:36 AM  
Blogger Marten Dingo said...

Bring back vinyl.

7:28 PM  
Blogger Jill said...

But...but...I liked Tom Petty. I still like Tom Petty. Does that make me part of the problem?

I'm gonna go out on a limb and guess that you weren't a Hall & Oates fan in the 80's.

7:17 AM  
Blogger Lexcen said...

Although I agree with you 100% I also remember my youth and what the oldies said about our music then.

12:09 PM  
Blogger Nancy Dancehall said...

That is why God invented eMusic. This is where you will find the stuff that doesn't suck. (Of course you'll still find a lot that does suck, but it is interesting suck, not pap-for-the-masses suck.) Go check it out. I'll send you a link.

8:05 AM  
Blogger Nancy Dancehall said...

BTW, the movie I was telling you about the other night is called "The Fall", not "The Stuntman". It is deep in the does-not-suck category.

8:09 AM  

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