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-   -   Pop music too loud and all sounds the same (http://www.drummerworld.com/forums/showthread.php?t=93488)

evolving_machine 07-29-2012 03:58 AM

Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...8IOE3320120726

What kind of opinions do all of you have about this?

ageadm 07-29-2012 04:07 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
I believe the same. Those repetitive and boring lyrics are just common these days in pop. Many of the faces that we see everyday on TV lack talent and don't deserve to be on the spotlight.
A big amount of those "stars" can't even perform live.

I totally dislike the 21st century pop and I totally avoid listening to it. The research is correct IMO.

caddywumpus 07-29-2012 04:44 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
So true.

...but yet, a simple, terrible song like "Call Me Maybe" will get lodged in your brain quicker than anything, and stick around for hours, despite all attempts to replace it with another, less obnoxious, catchy tune. THAT'S what sells, evidently...

evolving_machine 07-29-2012 05:28 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
I am old enough to remember when disc jockeys of local radio stations were able to program their own shows and choose what music they were to play. Unfortunately, now everything is programed from a central location.

In my opinion, the internet is not a means to replace the local disc jockeys, simply because everyone now is a local disc jockey of a their own radio station.

So I believe what has happened is that because there are so few programmers, the music is similar to a biological gene pool of 1st cousins. Eventually everyone in the town will have red hair and freckles because of the inbreeding.

drummerpig 07-29-2012 05:45 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
I really can't stand listening to most pop music. Too much of it lacks originality and any message beyond "let's paaaaarrrttttyyyy, bro!"

I always wonder why all of these "performers" face so much success, albeit temporary. Why don't they just pay skilled musicians to do the same job? Somebody who took years to perfect his or her craft will undoubtedly put out a much higher quality product than some talentless piece of eye candy without the need of all sorts of programming and adjustments (depending on the style of music).

Yes, a lot of people just want to listen to something that's fun and catchy, but one would think hearing the same stuff over and over and over again would get a little stale.

Anon La Ply 07-29-2012 08:03 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Yep. The suits have increased their stranglehold on the scene. What we are hearing is the sound of cash registers. That's quality control ... so the stinkers are not quite as stinky as in the old days but they never reach the heights either ... Macarthur Park, Classical Gas, Bohemian Rhapsody, Time is Tight, Sasha, I Just Don't Know What to do with Myself, Bridge Over Troubled Water ... all tops hits.

Now it's all shake your booty assy baby (add melisma and autotune "character") boom boom boom boom. Yeah, Pig, let's paaarty! Not music I'd ever seek out.

BabyBob 07-29-2012 01:56 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by caddywumpus (Post 1028894)
So true.

...but yet, a simple, terrible song like "Call Me Maybe" will get lodged in your brain quicker than anything, and stick around for hours, despite all attempts to replace it with another, less obnoxious, catchy tune. THAT'S what sells, evidently...

Ya that song annoys the hell out of me...ugh...

moe.ron 07-29-2012 07:53 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
the loudness thing is basically due to compression. there have been loudness wars for a while but now the dynamic range is so limited it makes the song louder. as for it sounding the same i totally agree...everything has a four on the floor kick at 80-90 bpm with some synth melody. hopefully the pendulum will swing back in the other direction soon

http://chzmemeanimals.files.wordpres...ello-maybe.jpg

TheGrandTr0ll 07-29-2012 08:48 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
I can't tell you guys how happy it makes me to see others who share the same opinion on 21st century pop. It seems like if I talk to anyone about it I always get the same bs answer that its always been this way.

evolving_machine 07-29-2012 09:20 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Pop music whether you like it or not (and I do not by the way), throughout history has inspired new music to be introduced into the musical collective. When new music gets into the musical collective, it does eventually teach older forms of music some new tricks.

There are some blogs, some apps, and some web sites, that do provide an avenue for new music. I do not think currently, that all of those avenues combined are able to provide a cultural source for new music. Perhaps we are now in a time that is still evolving, a time where the new technologies for music are still gaining an audience, and some newer technologies are still to be discovered by the music audience.

I can only hope that eventually, these times will bring a pulse to the new music, and new music will emerge through the mass of everything being too loud and sounding the same.

Filacterua 07-29-2012 10:01 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Alas! Comforting news indeed!

May I suggest examining a bit of evidence?

"I am glad that at least in my life I found someone
That may not be here forever to see me through,
But I found strength in you,

I only pray, that I have shown you a brighter day
Because that´s all that I am living for, you see.
Dont´t worry what happens to me."

- Stevie Wonder, "You and I" (1972 - Talking Book)

===

"And if I ever lost my hands
Lose my plough, lose my land
Oh, if I ever lose my hands- Oh, if...
I wont have to work no more
And if I ever lose my eyes
If my colours all run dry
And if I ever lose my eyes - Oh,
I won't have to cry no more
Yes, I'm being followed by a moon shadow
Moon shadow moon shadow
Leaping and hopping on a moonshadow
Moon shadow moon shadow"

- Cat Stevens, "Moonshadow" (1973 - The Teaser and the Firecat)

===

"Your stare was holdin',
Ripped jeans, skin was showin'
Hot night, wind was blowin'
Where you think you're going, baby?

Hey, I just met you,
And this is crazy,
But here's my number,
So call me, maybe?"

CARLY RAE JEPSEN - CALL ME MAYBE

===

This part of the article I find particularly revealing:

"They also found the so-called timbre palette has become poorer. The same note played at the same volume on, say, a piano and a guitar is said to have a different timbre, so the researchers found modern pop has a more limited variety of sounds."

No wonder I miss the old recordings, where so many wonderful instruments were used... Instruments that are criminally absent from today's pop landscape, like the electric organ, the saxophone and even the (REAL) piano...

===

"The music industry has long been accused of ramping up the volume at which songs are recorded in a 'loudness war' but Serra says this is the first time it has been properly measured using a large database."

I have caught myself squinting at the excessive compression used in modern day records. Even albums with otherwise good musical content (like Audrey Assad's music, which should ideally have a quaint, subdued quality about it) are squashed into an ungodly mass of trebly artifacts, too noisy and obtrusive to enjoy.

IDDrummer 07-29-2012 10:45 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
My son, who is twenty, despairs at the pop music of today, and says he can't possibly envision sharing it with his kids years down the road. Unless things really change, I expect he will be dipping back a bit further in the musical pantheon when exposing them to new, old music.

There is a huge irony in these loudness wars, too. When digital recording and CDs were first introduced, one of the major advantages was supposed to be the much wider dynamic range that was realistically available, without too much background noise. Now, they compress everything so much there is less dynamic range than my old LP records. It's just stupid, to this old musician.

BacteriumFendYoke 07-29-2012 10:59 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Honestly?

There's more good music around today than there ever has been. The main difference is that you're expected to look for it yourself and with new digital media that's perfectly possible. Just a few weeks ago I bought a great new album by Amon Tobin because it was recommended to me by a lady in a specialist music shop.

The rose-tinted spectacles are mostly just that. Sure, the charts today are generally much worse than a few decades ago (I'm in total agreement there) but time is a natural filter of detritus. How many number ones do you actually remember from the 1970s? Number twos? Number threes? There weren't that many worth remembering; it's just that we tend to remember only the better material of the date.

As for the lack of dynamic contrast - yes. Although this is changing and there are plenty of groups advocating change.

Do yourself a favour and stop looking at the charts. Look elsewhere. It's not exactly difficult - get yourself a Spotify subscription (I had one for two years) and explore. In fact, why not experiment? Go to a real record store (they do still exist) and talk to somebody knowledgeable.

For any of our UK constituents, if you want exciting and innovative new music there's a fantastic shop in Totnes (Devon):

http://www.driftrecordshop.com/

I went in there just over a month ago and the owner was quite happy to play music we were discussing over her (beautiful) sound system that was connected to her point of sale. Genuinely wonderful.

If you want the same, boring guitar music you've been listening to for thirty years you can go to HMV. If you want the same, boring pop music that's been flooding everything for decades, you can go to HMV. If you want something interesting and exciting then you're going to have to do a little less complaining and a little more exploring.

Anon La Ply 07-30-2012 07:35 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Duncan - a coincidence that you say that. I've been keeping a little diary of late (a bit old fashioned - most people would make it a blog) and this was this morning's entry, which touches on what you were talking about:
Funny thing. I'm looking up music for Dan's wedding and checked out Percy's Sledge's Man Loves a Woman on YouTube. By far the top rated comment was "this is real music not todays shit".

Once upon I time I would have agreed, mostly thinking about all the autotuned shake your ass let's party yo ho stuff with economically rational drum machines.

But you have to be wary of someone happy to airily wave things away as shit. In their case "shit" might encompass broad and enriching vistas of life that don't compute with their narrow, conservative worldview. They would probably call a lot of music I love "shit".

So I've learnt - for the 100th time - don't judge. Observe. Appreciate. Try to understand. Be calm. Let others shine more brightly than you do in areas you don't relate to and appreciate that they're doing their thing while I do my thing.

So what of these people who call everything shit? Must be a fair few of my vintage and pining for the past. I guess it's rough for passive consumers of music - the stuff they would come across is no doubt worse than in the past - imagine Macarthur Park or Bohemian Rhapsody or Classical Gas being a hit today. Too far from the formula strictly refined by the suits to keep the shareholders happy.

Finished my mock metal piece today. Absolutely kicks butt IMO. Funny and scary all at once - Stephen King meets Mel Brooks?

IDDrummer 07-30-2012 07:42 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by BacteriumFendYoke (Post 1029122)
Honestly?

There's more good music around today than there ever has been. The main difference is that you're expected to look for it yourself and with new digital media that's perfectly possible. Just a few weeks ago I bought a great new album by Amon Tobin because it was recommended to me by a lady in a specialist music shop.

The rose-tinted spectacles are mostly just that. Sure, the charts today are generally much worse than a few decades ago (I'm in total agreement there) but time is a natural filter of detritus. How many number ones do you actually remember from the 1970s? Number twos? Number threes? There weren't that many worth remembering; it's just that we tend to remember only the better material of the date.

As for the lack of dynamic contrast - yes. Although this is changing and there are plenty of groups advocating change.

Do yourself a favour and stop looking at the charts. Look elsewhere. It's not exactly difficult - get yourself a Spotify subscription (I had one for two years) and explore. In fact, why not experiment? Go to a real record store (they do still exist) and talk to somebody knowledgeable.

For any of our UK constituents, if you want exciting and innovative new music there's a fantastic shop in Totnes (Devon):

http://www.driftrecordshop.com/

I went in there just over a month ago and the owner was quite happy to play music we were discussing over her (beautiful) sound system that was connected to her point of sale. Genuinely wonderful.

If you want the same, boring guitar music you've been listening to for thirty years you can go to HMV. If you want the same, boring pop music that's been flooding everything for decades, you can go to HMV. If you want something interesting and exciting then you're going to have to do a little less complaining and a little more exploring.


I understand your point, but the discussion (and the study, as I read it) were about pop music.

Sure, there is good stuff out there too. But that wasn't the point, really. The point was that pop(ular) music has grown increasingly homogenous. And loud.

Anon La Ply 07-30-2012 07:47 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Stro, I think Duncan has given up pop as a bad job and suggests that exploring new vistas is a better option than being grumpy about what happens at the pointy money end of the music industry. I agree - it's another planet.

I prefer this planet (whatever one it is) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j2FnIzSf48k

That's what I call real disco music :)

TheGrandTr0ll 07-30-2012 08:18 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Filacterua (Post 1029094)

No wonder I miss the old recordings, where so many wonderful instruments were used... Instruments that are criminally absent from today's pop landscape, like the electric organ, the saxophone and even the (REAL) piano...

.

And you forgot the best instrument of all thats been replaced: Drums.

BacteriumFendYoke 07-30-2012 12:01 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by IDDrummer (Post 1029282)
I understand your point, but the discussion (and the study, as I read it) were about pop music.

Sure, there is good stuff out there too. But that wasn't the point, really. The point was that pop(ular) music has grown increasingly homogenous. And loud.

To some extent I would say that 'Popular' music has but this isn't anything new. Disco was a similar experience and I would say that a lot of the 1980s were dominated by 'Pop' that sounded much the same. The 'current' complaint probably started in the 1990s. I'm 24 and I find most modern chart music difficult to differentiate from late 90s 'Pop'.

On the other hand, sometimes interesting songs become popular:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8UVNT4wvIGY

Ok, the lyric is fairly asinine but there's some interesting things going on. The melody is vaguely Phil Collins-esque (in the good way) and the instrumentation is totally off the wall. The video is great. There are gems out there.

Watch the album charts, too. Those are often much more interesting.

IDDrummer 07-30-2012 04:55 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by BacteriumFendYoke (Post 1029310)
To some extent I would say that 'Popular' music has but this isn't anything new. Disco was a similar experience and I would say that a lot of the 1980s were dominated by 'Pop' that sounded much the same. The 'current' complaint probably started in the 1990s. I'm 24 and I find most modern chart music difficult to differentiate from late 90s 'Pop'.

On the other hand, sometimes interesting songs become popular:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8UVNT4wvIGY

Ok, the lyric is fairly asinine but there's some interesting things going on. The melody is vaguely Phil Collins-esque (in the good way) and the instrumentation is totally off the wall. The video is great. There are gems out there.

Watch the album charts, too. Those are often much more interesting.

Agree with this. There are gems. And that Gotye song is pretty cool.

Lunar Satellite Brian 07-31-2012 06:44 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Metric is the only good pop band ever.

Okay?

okay.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMGSpRJMnuU

(understand I'm talking about what is considered the "pop" genre, not all popular music, but they are still one of the best popular bands)

dmacc 07-31-2012 12:21 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Anon La Ply (Post 1028925)
Yep. The suits have increased their stranglehold on the scene. What we are hearing is the sound of cash registers. That's quality control ... so the stinkers are not quite as stinky as in the old days but they never reach the heights either ... Macarthur Park, Classical Gas, Bohemian Rhapsody, Time is Tight, Sasha, I Just Don't Know What to do with Myself, Bridge Over Troubled Water ... all tops hits.

Now it's all shake your booty assy baby (add melisma and autotune "character") boom boom boom boom. Yeah, Pig, let's paaarty! Not music I'd ever seek out.

Complete and utter words of wisdom in the truest sense....

It’s all "junk food". Maybe I’ve been at the age of the typical generational gap, I don’t know but the Pop music within the last many years to me has been nothing but the equivalent of “junk food” – pure industrial strength garbage. The crap I’ve heard (which is not much) sounds like it has no band – just a vocalist who attempts to sing to some sort of backing tracks not played by a group of humans. It seems though in order to qualify, the vocalist(s) must have the “look” to sell magazines and videos. All image and no substance.

Quote:

Originally Posted by caddywumpus (Post 1028894)
So true.

...but yet, a simple, terrible song like "Call Me Maybe" will get lodged in your brain quicker than anything, and stick around for hours, despite all attempts to replace it with another, less obnoxious, catchy tune. THAT'S what sells, evidently...

I never heard this song until a few weeks ago when we had our daughter out at an amusement park. All the kids starting around 8 years old knew all the words and were dancing in their seats to this nonsense.

You know what Pop music I personally find somewhat musical? Some Top 40 Country. It seems as if someone is actually still trying to make music that can sell with some form of melody and decent musicianship. Though rare, I hear it on occasion while spinning through the dial and end up stopping there to listen. I don’t know if it’s all like that but I’ll take it over the pure sewage the other pop stations are playing.

If I were forced to play Top 40 music today, I'd only play Country to do it.

Talismanis 07-31-2012 01:40 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
MAKE IT STOP. It's all the same drivel, some kind of merge between a really bad form of house music and autotuned crap. Same tempo, same key, same hooks apart from maybe a note or two changed. You can replace generic singer A with generic singer B and nobody will know the difference.
I hate going to clubs and stuff even though my friends persuade me to, because the DJs just play the same generic crap and the same songs they've been playing for the last 6 months. And for some reason my friends are happy with this!

Largactyl 08-01-2012 01:03 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
It's a millennium-old argument, but it's interesting to see them go about it in a more quantifiable way than just "what's up with kids and their music these days, amirite?". I'll admit, however, that every once in a while a pop song will come out that I genuinely like (Katy Perry in particular has had a couple of those just on her own), although I would never argue that those have any lyrical depth whatsoever.

Anon La Ply 08-01-2012 02:14 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by dmacc (Post 1029661)
... I don’t know but the Pop music within the last many years to me has been nothing but the equivalent of “junk food” – pure industrial strength garbage. The crap I’ve heard (which is not much) sounds like it has no band – just a vocalist who attempts to sing to some sort of backing tracks not played by a group of humans. It seems though in order to qualify, the vocalist(s) must have the “look” to sell magazines and videos. All image and no substance.

For the sake of objectivity, I'd say the vocalists generally do more than just attempt to do the takes. These kids sing just fine, not awesome like Freddie or Dusty or Joe Cocker etc, but they are competent. And spunky, of course.

That brings us to the whole point of being a suit - to impose controls, minimise risks, rationally analyse threats (eg. cost of session players) and opportunities (eg. tech) and produce consistent and reliable outputs that become synonymous with the brand, providing security and assurance for stakeholders.

Pretty obvious what kind of effect this economic rationalist - *sensible* - process will have on the arts, with all its inspiration, creativity, craziness, outlandish ideas, imagination, chaos, irreverance etc. As per their function, the suits are increasingly adept at churning out safe and predictable product with defined functions, usually dance or background. The CQ has become tighter and tighter - "quality" = more $$.

There's no art to it. Agree with Duncan as per below - the choice is out there if we are active. I've been checking out Sun Ra clips on the Tube for the last few days ... out with autotune in with cosmic :)

BUT ... there are a lot of passive music consumers out there and they are at least somewhat shaped by this music. Many don't have the choice - many work groups listen to the radio all day. The choice of station always goes to the blandest and least offensive channel, depending on who makes the most aggressive push for conformity.

And the suits have just the right product to augment your groovy clubbing lifestyle, a fine fashion accessory for the chic young urban bros and babes. Welcome to the machine, kids.

Swiss Matthias 08-01-2012 09:03 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Anon La Ply (Post 1029912)
BUT ... there are a lot of passive music consumers out there and they are at least somewhat shaped by this music. Many don't have the choice - many work groups listen to the radio all day. The choice of station always goes to the blandest and least offensive channel, depending on who makes the most aggressive push for conformity.

That's probably one of the biggest point.
Also, I think it's kind of "children's music", it's often child-like and childish in a way, and
young people are a huge market.

mikeyhanson 08-01-2012 12:25 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
I blame the suits. They are the ones who have over-analyzed, over-processed, packaged, condensed, simplified and stripped pop music of any creativity it may have had. And in doing so they've created a new type of music consumer who has absolutely nothing invested into music as a passion anymore, but as a backdrop. And to keep the public's attention, the suits have processed the music to such a degree as to take all subtlety out of it, turning every pop song into a relentless power drill at [insert today's popular beat-per-minute here].
I don't blame the technology [except for autotune, which I hate with the intensity of 1 million red-hot supernovas], I blame the suits abuse of that technology. They heard about compression and turned it into a "thing". They found out people liked particular songs, so instead of having their artists write songs that were in the similar vein, they just sample them outright and add an uninspired drum machine track, essentially regurgitating the same stuff over and over.

There's no originality, no passion, and certainly no subtlety in pop music anymore. It's run by money-hungry people who have creatively lost their way.

larryz 08-01-2012 03:31 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
I won't even read the article, but I do know that even semi-decent pop bands today like Coldplay may not have made it on radio back in the 1970s. There were a ton of bands who were just as good then. Heck, most music today is programmed, auto-tuned and could not even touch mediocre soft rock bands like England Dan & John Ford Coley or Seals & Crofts. Every female voice sounds like Katy Perry. She's cute and all but the talent ends there. And Disco wasn't the same as today's junk because there was at least some musicianship going on and an attempt to write a melody. Songs by Abba, Chic, Bee Gees, Donna Summer were actually quite good.

Mad About Drums 08-01-2012 07:16 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Pop music's been around for a long time, in a variety of styles too, there's always been the flops, the gems, the "must be avoided at all cost", most of them going up and down the charts.

For some of us, we've been through the 60's, 70's, 80's, 90' and 00's (yes I'm that old), and we've seen almost anything and everything, the drum machine and/or electronic drums started as far back as the 70's, so nothing's new here... today's music is no different, there's some good stuff still happening (Adele comes to my mind, good music, good voice and played by musicians), but in this day and age, anything that is somehow "good" is overplayed on every TV shows and radio stations, you just get tired to hear it after a while, no matter how good it is.

Yes, some music is on the "cheap" side, with the same video, the same drum track and the same overplay in all medias, but I'm not that bothered, I don't listen to charts music that much, my daughter's doing that for me, but as Duncan rightly said, if you're looking hard enough, there's still some good stuff around.

The "other" side of this topic is that we're discussing it among musicians, and we tend to have a different views than non-musicians, many people listen to music "for fun", and as long as it is catchy, danceable, easily available with a goog looking guy or chick, it's more than enough for them... just check the CD collections next time you're invited for a meal by some non-musicians friends, sometimes I want to cry... :)

You know, songs like Abacab, Rosanna, Sultan of Swing, Every Breath You Take, Baker Street, Get it On and many many more seems like they came not that long ago, geez, does times fly...

The worst one so far? it must be 'Born to be Alive" by Patrick Hernandez :-)

SticksEasy 08-02-2012 12:13 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
I've played with mostly Punk bands, but I've also done rock cover bands, metal, even country and folk bands. And I will say shamelessly that there is NOTHING WRONG with pop music.

It's true that the media is forcing it - there's almost no rock music on the radio these days, but the artists can't help that. I dislike Justin Bieber's music, but I don't hate the kid or think he should die. He's a phase, and he'll fizzle out soon enough.

I do like Lady Gaga - her music always gets stuck in my head, and the rhythms are so unique. I also like classic Pop like Prince, and even some Michael Jackson songs were groovy.

I'll listen to anything that catches my attention. But if you want to talk about music that sounds the same? Look at Nickelback, Godsmack, Disturbed... I'd rather listen to modern pop than ANY of those three bands, just because all the albums and songs sound the same. Nickelback's first two albums were good Rock N' Roll. After that forget it.

I'm sure a bunch of people will assault this post - I could really care less. But the bottom line is: pop music is here to stay. So rather you love it or hate, you'd better get used to it.

Anon La Ply 08-02-2012 05:03 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by SticksEasy (Post 1030247)
I do like Lady Gaga - her music always gets stuck in my head, and the rhythms are so unique. I also like classic Pop like Prince, and even some Michael Jackson songs were groovy.

SE (I can't call you "Sticks" - there will only be one "Sticks") ... just trying to understand taste between generations. I like plenty of pop too. Do you enjoy this tune?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AuPOwe-2EYA

I'm guessing that the production, instrumentation and arrangement will sound old to you. Can you get past it to enjoy the other aspects? Can you get past it to the point where you enjoy the songwriting, the vocal performance and the dynamics and musicianship?

Reason I ask is that I recognise that there are some groovy tunes, riffs and rhythms in modern pop but I find it hard to get past the drum machines, glossy production and not much songwriting.

IDDrummer 08-02-2012 05:44 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
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Bad Tempered Clavier 08-02-2012 03:20 PM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
What worries me is the apparent dearth of artists in their teens/twenties who may look like they are capable of taking up the mantle of filling the larger venues of the world once their forebears are too old or too dead to carry on.

I mean, if you look at all the big gigs in the UK this year that were either festivals or part of some national event (e.g. Royal Jubilee/Olympics etc) - the vast majority of acts and certainly all of the headliners are artists that have been around forever:
  • Jubilee Concert - Sir Tom Jones, Sir Elton John, Sir Stevie Wonder, headlined by Sir Paul McCartney.
  • Download festival (Donnington) - Headliners: The Prodigy, Metallica, Black Sabbath.
  • Olympics - Mike Oldfield and Sir Macca again.
  • Reading & Leeds festival - Headliners: The Cure and Foo Fighters.
  • Also Sonisphere (Knebworth), which was cancelled but had scheduled headliners Kiss, Queen [i.e. Roger and Brian with some kid from American Idol or something], and Faith no More.

Now, this is all well and good but let's be honest most of these acts are past their best (in some cases considerably so) and I for one would very much welcome an act that is under 30 that is capable of putting on a decent rock/pop show of some magnitude. Let's not forget that John Bonham was 22 years old when Led Zeppelin first played Madison Square Garden and a mere 25 when they played that record-breaking gig in Tampa to around 60,000 people. I can't think of any drummer [certainly from the UK] that young who is regularly playing to such numbers these days. Dominic Howard of Muse and Will Champion of Coldplay are both 34 but there aren't any rock bands younger than them (that I know of) who can command the kind of audiences that they do.

Swiss Matthias 08-03-2012 12:14 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Bad Tempered Clavier (Post 1030425)
Now, this is all well and good but let's be honest most of these acts are past their best (in some cases considerably so) and I for one would very much welcome an act that is under 30 that is capable of putting on a decent rock/pop show of some magnitude.

Robbie Williams is past 30 I think, but he sure can put on a great and world class
entertaining show, doesn't he?

Swiss Matthias 08-03-2012 12:14 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
... or Jamie Cullum maybe?

dmacc 08-03-2012 12:35 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
You want to listen/read what goes into making a hit song?

$78,000 to make the song, and another $1 million to roll it out (Rihanna)

From NPR http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2011/...t-song?ps=cprs

MJD 08-04-2012 06:41 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Anon La Ply (Post 1029912)
For the sake of objectivity, I'd say the vocalists generally do more than just attempt to do the takes. These kids sing just fine, not awesome like Freddie or Dusty or Joe Cocker etc, but they are competent. And spunky, of course.

Remember what the singer who had the most number one hits in the last(20th) century said about Elvis even though he represented an entirely different style at the time. Paraphrasing He sings just fine and has talent, cant sing a ballad yet but that will come with time and experience. Btw the singer with the most number one hits in the last century was Bing Crosby. It's a good fact to remember. And also remember Jazz is pop music as are all of it's offshoots(rock etc) and a few of it's predecessors(Minstrel tunes, Ragtime, and Marching music held sway just previously) .

Anon La Ply 08-04-2012 07:47 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MJD (Post 1031074)
Remember what the singer who had the most number one hits in the last(20th) century said about Elvis even though he represented an entirely different style at the time. Paraphrasing He sings just fine and has talent, cant sing a ballad yet but that will come with time and experience. Btw the singer with the most number one hits in the last century was Bing Crosby. It's a good fact to remember. And also remember Jazz is pop music as are all of it's offshoots(rock etc) and a few of it's predecessors(Minstrel tunes, Ragtime, and Marching music held sway just previously) .

There's a coincidence! Obviously Bing wasn't a fan but saw potential, which makes sense since he would have given primacy to how a singers handles ballads.James Brown would have probably wanted Elvis to groove harder.

What I don't like is the bland Mariah Carey / Whitney model on which so many female singers base themselves. Kelly Clarkson etc. The only TOTP female singers of late who I enjoy are Anastacia (her voice - dislike those endless lurve hooks), Adele (one good song) and Christina Aguilera, who oversings but has a great voice. Less mainstream I love Fiona Apple's Criminal.

MJD 08-04-2012 08:29 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Anon La Ply (Post 1031091)
There's a coincidence! Obviously Bing wasn't a fan but saw potential, which makes sense since he would have given primacy to how a singers handles ballads.James Brown would have probably wanted Elvis to groove harder.

What I don't like is the bland Mariah Carey / Whitney model on which so many female singers base themselves. Kelly Clarkson etc. The only TOTP female singers of late who I enjoy are Anastacia (her voice - dislike those endless lurve hooks), Adele (one good song) and Christina Aguilera, who oversings but has a great voice. Less mainstream I love Fiona Apple's Criminal.

Agreed, though I happen to think that Miss Carey has a very fine voice and hasnt been served well at all by her writers. when over half the melodic interest is in her desperate ad lib melismas it's a sign of poor composition and the performer compensating for it as best they can. Same with Aguilera though she has had better luck in this regard. this oversinging is definitely not a model i would advise anyone to follow though it is an effective means of distracting a good number of people from the fact that many of these songs just arent well written in the first place.

Oh and as to Bing, he was pretty damn marvelous at an uptune and no stranger to faster tempos. He had the range and understood that it takes less breath control to sing a fast song than a ballad and more acting ability to put a ballad over convincingly than a fast number like Sweet Georgia Brown or to bring it back to Elvis All Shook Up. Actually the former is about 20 clicks faster than the latter on the respective recordings.

Anon La Ply 08-04-2012 09:57 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MJD (Post 1031101)
Agreed, though I happen to think that Miss Carey has a very fine voice and hasnt been served well at all by her writers. when over half the melodic interest is in her desperate ad lib melismas it's a sign of poor composition and the performer compensating for it as best they can.

"Desperate melismas" is perfect. May I borrow it? :)

None of this has been helped by the Idol shows, where the singers have one song to prove that they have the chops if required, so they show them off where it's not required (or even desirable).

The trend was already there, as you say, to provide some interest in slapdash, formulaic commercial tunes but the "sensitive talented female singer with the big voice who is cute and can dance" meme has been done to death.

Bring on the edgy women, I say!

Didn't know about Bing singing faster tunes, apart from his version of Caravan that IMO sounded anaemic as compared with Duke's.

Mad About Drums 08-04-2012 10:15 AM

Re: Pop music too loud and all sounds the same
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Anon La Ply (Post 1031121)
Bring on the edgy women, I say!

Go for it Grea ... :)


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