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Old 04-16-2010, 03:19 PM
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Default Re: Pretentious music??

Originally Posted by Pollyanna View Post
"Pretentious" is a work bandied around a lot by critics. I never quite worked out what pretentious music was.

The dictionary tells me that pretentious means:
characterized by assumption of dignity or importance or

making an exaggerated outward show; ostentatious.
Thing is, there's a lot of music that has "an exaggerated outward show" that might be called a lot of things but not usually "pretentious" - fusion, gospel and metal music are the most obvious examples. Prog rock is the usual the victim.

An "assumption of dignity or importance"? You can sometimes see it in a band's demeanour ... but the music?? I mean, all the musos are doing is writing music they think will sound good and then they tweak it until everyone's happy.

So the music isn't three chords or straight fours - that just means the musicians like to carry on a bit and get bored with the usual humdrum. I can't see the pretence, myself.

Am I missing something?
I think when applied to music, the definition of pretentious leans more towards "assumption of importance". In other words, presenting the music in a cocky or presumptious manner with the artist believing he's/she's better than he/she actually is. Perhaps KG might fall into that catagory, whereas Elvis would not. I think it's more of a self hype observation. Something that has the outward appearance of substance, skill & gravity but underneath, lacks the sincerity & depth portrayed with such confidence on the surface.

Agree with Larry, it's all bollocks anyhow.
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