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Old 01-06-2011, 08:02 PM   #41 (permalink)
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I don't know, I think this is a bit extreme. It's an interesting Red Dawn like theory but seems to be thinking a little too outside the realistic scope.
I would analyze the whole thing, but that 'realist' comment really gets to me.

The reality of history is that it is a series of the same things happening over and over and over... Different names, different places, different times, but the same story. Anybody who has taken the time to grasp the history of the arts would know that. Actually, any basic historical knowledge would suffice. Wars are usually won/lost for the same reasons. Revolutionaries are killed off, some are intelligent enough to live (usually for the exact same reasons). To quote Mark Twain: "History does not repeat itself, but it does rhyme."

For anyone who TRULY thinks we've done anything differently than the same people who ****ed up and had the arts drowned out 2,000 years ago, you might want to analyze it from a purely historical perspective. Nobody has fixed' anything; kitsch still controls virtually everything. Thousands of years ago there were critics who thought outside of the box. Those people were the 'underground' powerhouses who the masses came to adore for telling the truth. They were eventually suppressed, and everybody re-assimilated.

Just because I'm writing 'a lot', doesn't mean I'm reading too much into this. It's purely logic. Those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it.
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Old 01-06-2011, 08:13 PM   #42 (permalink)
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It's not impossible. Just a bit to off of a chance to bank on being the music future. I mean, It's kind of weird to assume a massive shift in politics like that. If the purpose is to inform people of the danger of a future oppression then yes. Yet, feels out of the scope of the argument.

So, I recoil my phrasing of 'realistic scope', and replace it with the more fitting term of 'scope of certainty'. Since, there's no way to truly be certain of this.

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Who says it's just going to be governments that do it?

At the moment there are only 4 record companies that control about 99% of what you hear on radio & tv.

What happens when they become 3, or 2. Or even 1 owned by a Rupert Murdoch type figure?
See, now this I see as a problem. I mean, even with these four record companies, there has been one company controlling all of major music TV markets(Viacom), and I don't know if these 4 record companies are a reference to what's going on with the companies that own the radio station or the companies producing themselves, but both are major issues.

With that said, however, there are tons of listeners who can distinguish for themselves, and will not listen to the radio knowing it's mostly garbage. It's a minority, but it's an audience which exists.
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Old 01-07-2011, 12:20 AM   #43 (permalink)
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I don't see the point of being so dystopian, especially regarding artforms such as music. Music itself has probably been around since man discovered fire but popular music as we know it has only existed for like 50 years or so, and it has ever since constantly evolved and branched off into a multitude of styles and purposes. Mainly thanks to the equally evolving technology, which brings us to the larger picture.

'History is doomed to repeat itself' says the ringer of doom, but consider this: During the last 100 years, more development has taken place in our world than during the entire history of mankind up until then. We have gone from walking by foot to the next village over the course of one day to catching a plane from Stockholm to Tokyo in the same amount of time. We have gone from having to collect hopefully dry firewood in the forest to chop up and set fire to in the stove to gain heat, to turn the thermostat on the radiator half an inch to the left. We have gone from baking bread out of grinded bark and fermenting fish to typing in an order on a website for pizza. We have gone from hardly being able to read at all, and if so, barely ever coming across something to read, to having access to just about all the knowledge in the whole world without even leaving the room. And we have gone from writing letters with - at best - a quill-pen and sending them through a postal service that took weeks to deliver, to instantly throwing out short and sharp messages about how today's music sucks on a virtual place dedicated only to music, which everyone in the whole world can access. And as you read this, there are dozens of things just around you at this very moment, that you don't even pay attention to but that didn't even exist just a 100 years ago, whose absence probably made life a lot harder then. Would you believe such things would occur in 100 years time, had we lived at the turn of the last century? I doubt it.

What I'm trying to get across here is that we live in a unique time in history, despite the fact that yes, there are still powerful people out there who will always try to gain control over certain things. But it's harder than ever for them to do that since the ultimate proof of the advantages of a liberated world is all around us in the form of development, technology, science, culture and the most basic assumption: The acknowledgements of human rights and freedom that stem from the philosophical revolution we generally refer to as the enlightenment, in turn sparking the political conditions under which the industrial, and in time technological, revolution could take place. This was simply something unheard of ever before and historically speaking, the turning point that once and for all proved the capabilites of man. I'm not saying that it's the best of worlds, but I do say that it is arguably the best world we have yet seen.

And ok, that's a grander historical perspective but music isn't isolated from that either. People often ask me if I'd rather live in the 60's/70's since the music back then was so much better than today. My answer nowadays is alway a strict no, because why would I want to go back to a time where I could only listen to the music that had yet been made then when I instead can stay here and listen to all that wonderful music and best parts of the music being made today? And why would I want to leave behind a time where I can access all that music by the press of a few buttons, and in addition, look up information about the bands I on the way find interesting? No, I'm not a technocrat, because in discussions like these I don't really see the machines around me as machines. I see needs being fulfilled through the visions of other people, people who strive to make a certain little part of our lives just a tiny bit easier, and in the process actually get to realize it and be rewarded for it.

The same thing goes for music; It's easier than ever to realize your musical vision so yes, we have to put up with everyone and his grandma trying to prove themselves worthy of airplay, but would we want to trade all that for conditions that filter away everyone but the ones who are granted access to the microphones? Would we cut back on the technology in order to save ourselves from teeny-bop pollution and in the process having to go back to expensive records that in addition there aren't too many of? Would we want to give up on an open virtual society through which we can listen, collect, share, advertise, showcase, trade and discuss - all by our own choice - music? No, we wouldn't, and anyone who claims otherwise is either a liar or a music hater. And possibly a closet misanthrope.

---

I feel like ending this tirade on a high and, in my opinion, apt note:



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The process had begun
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Old 01-07-2011, 06:19 PM   #44 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Dotoar View Post
I don't see the point of being so dystopian, especially regarding artforms such as music. Music itself has probably been around since man discovered fire but popular music as we know it has only existed for like 50 years or so, and it has ever since constantly evolved and branched off into a multitude of styles and purposes. Mainly thanks to the equally evolving technology, which brings us to the larger picture.

'History is doomed to repeat itself' says the ringer of doom, but consider this: During the last 100 years, more development has taken place in our world than during the entire history of mankind up until then. We have gone from walking by foot to the next village over the course of one day to catching a plane from Stockholm to Tokyo in the same amount of time. We have gone from having to collect hopefully dry firewood in the forest to chop up and set fire to in the stove to gain heat, to turn the thermostat on the radiator half an inch to the left. We have gone from baking bread out of grinded bark and fermenting fish to typing in an order on a website for pizza. We have gone from hardly being able to read at all, and if so, barely ever coming across something to read, to having access to just about all the knowledge in the whole world without even leaving the room. And we have gone from writing letters with - at best - a quill-pen and sending them through a postal service that took weeks to deliver, to instantly throwing out short and sharp messages about how today's music sucks on a virtual place dedicated only to music, which everyone in the whole world can access. And as you read this, there are dozens of things just around you at this very moment, that you don't even pay attention to but that didn't even exist just a 100 years ago, whose absence probably made life a lot harder then. Would you believe such things would occur in 100 years time, had we lived at the turn of the last century? I doubt it.
Take for example Ancient Rome; they had plenty of great luxuries (heck, had these luxuries not ****ed them over like they will us, they might have discovered electricity). Their water system was ingenious, they had brilliant military and scientific minds. They had plenty of things to do in their spare time, such as bathing (a big passtime), the colloseum, etc. Yet look what happened. Their lust for savagery, their inability to deal with incoming attacks due to their obsession with laziness (and, according to the Pope, being sinners) led to their downfall. All over the course of history, people have had luxuries that either constitute their downfall or wind up being reappropriated to another civilization (not a passtime, but for example, Romans using Greek Gods by power). It's only natural that we get MORE of them, because we're building on something that previously existed. But just because we're building off of something, doesn't mean that that 'thing' won't tumble. "History is doomed to repeat itself", says the realist.

Quote:
What I'm trying to get across here is that we live in a unique time in history, despite the fact that yes, there are still powerful people out there who will always try to gain control over certain things. But it's harder than ever for them to do that since the ultimate proof of the advantages of a liberated world is all around us in the form of development, technology, science, culture and the most basic assumption: The acknowledgements of human rights and freedom that stem from the philosophical revolution we generally refer to as the enlightenment, in turn sparking the political conditions under which the industrial, and in time technological, revolution could take place. This was simply something unheard of ever before and historically speaking, the turning point that once and for all proved the capabilites of man. I'm not saying that it's the best of worlds, but I do say that it is arguably the best world we have yet seen.
So the Greek philosophers and the spiritual/intellectual/revolutionary enlightenment it led to don't count? Yes, the philosophes of France during the Enlightenment coined something special for their time, and it IMPACTED the common class more than say 'Leviathan' or something, but it had been done many times before, in the same fashion. We look back on our recent history as something special. It indeed was, the names, dates and places all fascinate me to say the least (history is honestly the best bottomless pit to ever exist), but it's not without its visible patterns. Simply because we're more in touch with the Francophones who invented the first encyclopaedia, doesn't mean we can say it's without visible comparisons.

Quote:
And ok, that's a grander historical perspective but music isn't isolated from that either. People often ask me if I'd rather live in the 60's/70's since the music back then was so much better than today. My answer nowadays is alway a strict no, because why would I want to go back to a time where I could only listen to the music that had yet been made then when I instead can stay here and listen to all that wonderful music and best parts of the music being made today? And why would I want to leave behind a time where I can access all that music by the press of a few buttons, and in addition, look up information about the bands I on the way find interesting? No, I'm not a technocrat, because in discussions like these I don't really see the machines around me as machines. I see needs being fulfilled through the visions of other people, people who strive to make a certain little part of our lives just a tiny bit easier, and in the process actually get to realize it and be rewarded for it.
I find the question is just meant to see how much nostalgia you have in your system. Living in the time of your favorite music is a lot different than experiencing it thirty years later. I personally agree with you on staying here, though.

Quote:
The same thing goes for music; It's easier than ever to realize your musical vision so yes, we have to put up with everyone and his grandma trying to prove themselves worthy of airplay, but would we want to trade all that for conditions that filter away everyone but the ones who are granted access to the microphones? Would we cut back on the technology in order to save ourselves from teeny-bop pollution and in the process having to go back to expensive records that in addition there aren't too many of? Would we want to give up on an open virtual society through which we can listen, collect, share, advertise, showcase, trade and discuss - all by our own choice - music? No, we wouldn't, and anyone who claims otherwise is either a liar or a music hater. And possibly a closet misanthrope.
Not against everybody giving music a chance in the slightest, so I doubt this is addressing me. I simply feel as though all of these people are going to have a hard-as-**** time trying to get a 'deal' or whatever they wish to get based off of how manipulative, controlling and arbitrarily-selective their taskmasters will end up being.

I would like to add that this is probably the most personally interesting debate/topic I've ever had on MB, and I feel the site needs more of these wall-of-texts debates that merit miles more discussion.

Last edited by clutnuckle; 01-07-2011 at 06:25 PM.
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Old 01-07-2011, 07:44 PM   #45 (permalink)
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I'm really digging this discussion. I underrated this thread at first.
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Old 01-07-2011, 08:11 PM   #46 (permalink)
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First of all I wasn't adressing you in particular, but the overall trend which is prevalent in a lot of people's minds as well as in this thread.

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Originally Posted by clutnuckle View Post
Take for example Ancient Rome; they had plenty of great luxuries (heck, had these luxuries not ****ed them over like they will us, they might have discovered electricity). Their water system was ingenious, they had brilliant military and scientific minds. They had plenty of things to do in their spare time, such as bathing (a big passtime), the colloseum, etc. Yet look what happened. Their lust for savagery, their inability to deal with incoming attacks due to their obsession with laziness (and, according to the Pope, being sinners) led to their downfall. All over the course of history, people have had luxuries that either constitute their downfall or wind up being reappropriated to another civilization (not a passtime, but for example, Romans using Greek Gods by power). It's only natural that we get MORE of them, because we're building on something that previously existed. But just because we're building off of something, doesn't mean that that 'thing' won't tumble. "History is doomed to repeat itself", says the realist.
Yes, you make a valid point that also happens to lie in the core of what I was trying to say. The romans, for instance, had a lot of potential and there's no logical reason why they couldn't have had an industrial revolution themselves, about 2000 years before it actually took place. And there's no logical reason why any other culture would have had it ever since up until the 19th century, if not for the very fact that the social structures were simply not sustainable. Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely, and this is arguably the one reason why ancient empires would not persist and evolve, but instead bet it all on warfare and conquering other empires. The difference today, is that our modern society for once isn't built upon conquering but cooperation, the identification of basic human rights and freedom. This has led to the common people actually having access to all those inventions we've seen evolve during modern time, and not only the elite as in the ancient societies.

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Originally Posted by clutnuckle View Post
So the Greek philosophers and the spiritual/intellectual/revolutionary enlightenment it led to don't count? Yes, the philosophes of France during the Enlightenment coined something special for their time, and it IMPACTED the common class more than say 'Leviathan' or something, but it had been done many times before, in the same fashion. We look back on our recent history as something special. It indeed was, the names, dates and places all fascinate me to say the least (history is honestly the best bottomless pit to ever exist), but it's not without its visible patterns. Simply because we're more in touch with the Francophones who invented the first encyclopaedia, doesn't mean we can say it's without visible comparisons.
Of course the greek philosphers count, we still base our philosophical discussions on their heritage. But that's not the point. What is the point is that the access of knowledge is bigger and more widespread today than ever, and that is due to the technological revolution, which in turn is due to... well you know.

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Originally Posted by clutnuckle View Post
I find the question is just meant to see how much nostalgia you have in your system. Living in the time of your favorite music is a lot different than experiencing it thirty years later. I personally agree with you on staying here, though.
In any case, none of us have that much choice. At least until someone invents the time machine, which in turn would only boost that point. (Not that I think anyone will though).

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Originally Posted by clutnuckle View Post
Not against everybody giving music a chance in the slightest, so I doubt this is addressing me. I simply feel as though all of these people are going to have a hard-as-**** time trying to get a 'deal' or whatever they wish to get based off of how manipulative, controlling and arbitrarily-selective their taskmasters will end up being.
You're right, it wasn't me adressing you but rather adressing the general opinion that this thread reeks of in places. Of course, very few would actually oppose the technical development which I refer to here, but the logical concusion of some of the assumptions being made will end up in a regressive domain. Like when people comlain about today's mainstream climate and say that it sucks. Well, I kinda agree that it does from a musical point of view; It's even supposed to suck. That's why I avoid the commercial channels and instead go hunting on my own, sometimes with the aid of friends and online recommendations (like all of you guys *). But one mustn't forget that the commercial aspect in the long run makes the price for technology go down, the very technology we can either record our own music with or ease up our listening habits with. I say we should engage in the music we love instead of picking on parts of the musical industry which we obviously have very little to do with.

And when you think about it, the notion that music was better in the past doesn't even make sense; It once was laid down on record once and for all and will be accessible virtually forever.


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Old 01-07-2011, 08:51 PM   #47 (permalink)
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Yes, you make a valid point that also happens to lie in the core of what I was trying to say. The romans, for instance, had a lot of potential and there's no logical reason why they couldn't have had an industrial revolution themselves, about 2000 years before it actually took place. And there's no logical reason why any other culture would have had it ever since up until the 19th century, if not for the very fact that the social structures were simply not sustainable. Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely, and this is arguably the one reason why ancient empires would not persist and evolve, but instead bet it all on warfare and conquering other empires. The difference today, is that our modern society for once isn't built upon conquering but cooperation, the identification of basic human rights and freedom. This has led to the common people actually having access to all those inventions we've seen evolve during modern time, and not only the elite as in the ancient societies.

Of course the greek philosphers count, we still base our philosophical discussions on their heritage. But that's not the point. What is the point is that the access of knowledge is bigger and more widespread today than ever, and that is due to the technological revolution, which in turn is due to... well you know.
I see where you're coming from here, and I do like the contrast you've drawn between monarchy and democracy and why it may be the source to some of the more 'visible change'. Though, I wouldn't say we're actually making as much 'progress' as is viewed. We make a new 'gadget' every week that has some superficial, ultimately worthless feature, but very little substance enters current inventions. Of course, scientific/technological/musical genius still exists, but a lot of this so-called inventiveness is just a superficial take on something unnecessary.

Of course, I don't want to take anything away from the brilliant minds who did what they did in this era. But I still think we'd be lucky to equal another ancient society. Indeed we have more of an application to our science now (as in we can actually do things with it rather than just theorize), but we've still been basing our theories/hypotheses off of very old studies from thousands of years ago (though in chemistry/physics you'd be indeed right that a LOT more has happened as of late than anything of previous). Who's to say that so-and-so wouldn't have discovered <insert radical thing here>? Of course you could say "But so-and-so didn't!", but the only reason he didn't is because he was dead, and the person who actually discovered it likely wouldn't have had it not been for so-and-so's previous work.

The musical parallel (as I've been talking an awful lot of **** about historical mumbo-jumbo) would be that we are indeed going to suffer in the same way that the musicians/music-enthusiasts of 'yore' suffered. I'll admit that it might not be as drastic as I thought, but I only see it as a natural occurrence. We have more technology and theory to our music, and we get it around a lot quicker, but I don't think we're free from the same constraints as our ancestors.

A REALLY lame analogy I came up with, but it pretty much describes my feeling:

"In the ten-thousand-year-long process of building a tower, we have been given a collapsed foundation from our ancestors, and we have been gradually reconstructing it for the last few hundred years. However, just like our forefathers, we too have the more-than-likely chance to have our foundations collapse. Whether or not somebody picks up our pieces is neither here nor there."

So I guess my 'thesis' here is that I still think we have no chance to avoid a natural relapse into a mini-'dark age', but perhaps it'll short or less significant than I had imagined. I was a little dramatic earlier on, but that was simply to hammer home the point. I do feel like a negative change is definitely on its way; whether it will drastically affect the way we listen to music, the way we find it, the way we fall in love with it... I suppose you'll need to experience it.

Quote:
You're right, it wasn't me adressing you but rather adressing the general opinion that this thread reeks of in places. Of course, very few would actually oppose the technical development which I refer to here, but the logical concusion of some of the assumptions being made will end up in a regressive domain. Like when people comlain about today's mainstream climate and say that it sucks. Well, I kinda agree that it does from a musical point of view; It's even supposed to suck. That's why I avoid the commercial channels and instead go hunting on my own, sometimes with the aid of friends and online recommendations (like all of you guys *). But one mustn't forget that the commercial aspect in the long run makes the price for technology go down, the very technology we can either record our own music with or ease up our listening habits with. I say we should engage in the music we love instead of picking on parts of the musical industry which we obviously have very little to do with.

And when you think about it, the notion that music was better in the past doesn't even make sense; It once was laid down on record once and for all and will be accessible virtually forever.
Good summary. I've never been one to buy into the whole 'music at this time is better'. I've found more concentrations of music that I like from the 60s and 70s, but that's only because I've binged on them. Equal (or at least very close) amounts of brilliance permeate the music world every year, decade, month, nanosecond, what have you.
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Old 01-07-2011, 10:33 PM   #48 (permalink)
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I see where you're coming from here, and I do like the contrast you've drawn between monarchy and democracy and why it may be the source to some of the more 'visible change'. Though, I wouldn't say we're actually making as much 'progress' as is viewed. We make a new 'gadget' every week that has some superficial, ultimately worthless feature, but very little substance enters current inventions. Of course, scientific/technological/musical genius still exists, but a lot of this so-called inventiveness is just a superficial take on something unnecessary.
(Monarchy and democracy being used as figurative concepts here to illustrate presence and absence of totalitarianism, I presume, but that's just nitpicking. I don't actually want to pick nits).

Well, I simply have to state my different stance here. I see almost nothing but progress during the last, say, 150 years. Remember what it is that steers the progression, at least where it's allowed to - people's needs and preferences. It's easy for you (and me) to deem certain functions as superficial and worthless in the longer run, but the thing is that 'superficial' is itself not a feature we are entitled to dismiss, and if it's 'worthless' in the eyes of the ones who are expected to use it, then it will disappear sooner or later. That happens all the time.

One not too distant example is the Cash-card, introduced here in Sweden during the late 90's, which basically was a, well, cash-card to which you could tie (a limited amount of) money and therefore pay with. The system never took off though, because it was deemed complicated by the stores and the customers alike, as well as totally redundant since we already had the traditional VISA's and other established cash- and creditcards tied directly to the bank accounts. Thus, it disappeared after just a few years; Consumer preference at work. Whatever is worthy stays (until something else does the job even better). If the hipsters want to stuff their iPhones with apps, let them. I'm happy with my Samsung.

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Originally Posted by clutnuckle View Post
Of course, I don't want to take anything away from the brilliant minds who did what they did in this era. But I still think we'd be lucky to equal another ancient society. Indeed we have more of an application to our science now (as in we can actually do things with it rather than just theorize), but we've still been basing our theories/hypotheses off of very old studies from thousands of years ago (though in chemistry/physics you'd be indeed right that a LOT more has happened as of late than anything of previous). Who's to say that so-and-so wouldn't have discovered <insert radical thing here>? Of course you could say "But so-and-so didn't!", but the only reason he didn't is because he was dead, and the person who actually discovered it likely wouldn't have had it not been for so-and-so's previous work.
Of course, every strain of newly-found knowledge has to start from previous knowledge. But it wasn't exactly easy to present new theories and discoveries that may have contradicted contemporary opinions. Copernicus for one, would certainly testify about that if he could.

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Originally Posted by clutnuckle View Post
The musical parallel (as I've been talking an awful lot of **** about historical mumbo-jumbo) would be that we are indeed going to suffer in the same way that the musicians/music-enthusiasts of 'yore' suffered. I'll admit that it might not be as drastic as I thought, but I only see it as a natural occurrence. We have more technology and theory to our music, and we get it around a lot quicker, but I don't think we're free from the same constraints as our ancestors.
The difference here is that the musicians of yore (by whom I assume you mean those from the past centuries and back) simply didn't have the means to preserve their music, not to mention that they - as people - lived under more or less severe conditions which simply couldn't become better had we not started to explore such simple things as hygiene to prolong our lives. The constraints we, in contrast to our ancestors, effectively avoid are mainly the very basic ones, such as the need for food, shelter, hygiene, medicine, infrastructure and judicial protection from violence and theft, to start with. (This is the one reason which makes it impossible to have a musical discussion like this without bringing in historical mumbo-jumbo, so at least I am glad you brought it in.).

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Originally Posted by clutnuckle View Post
A REALLY lame analogy I came up with, but it pretty much describes my feeling:

"In the ten-thousand-year-long process of building a tower, we have been given a collapsed foundation from our ancestors, and we have been gradually reconstructing it for the last few hundred years. However, just like our forefathers, we too have the more-than-likely chance to have our foundations collapse. Whether or not somebody picks up our pieces is neither here nor there."

So I guess my 'thesis' here is that I still think we have no chance to avoid a natural relapse into a mini-'dark age', but perhaps it'll short or less significant than I had imagined. I was a little dramatic earlier on, but that was simply to hammer home the point. I do feel like a negative change is definitely on its way; whether it will drastically affect the way we listen to music, the way we find it, the way we fall in love with it... I suppose you'll need to experience it.
I see no reason for any major, or even minor, collapse unless a large enough number of people actually want to achieve it. The society as a whole is just too stable, at least in the west and the far east (which by the way has undergone a similar technological evolution as the west, only thrice as fast) to crumble like any of the ancient empires once did. Of course I may be wrong, and if I am I'll gladly buy you a beer (if there is any left after armageddon, that is).

That the way we listen to music is undergoing a major change as we speak is certainly true, and I am actually glad that that it's so. The love for music probably has as many different kinds of origins as there are individuals on the planet and none of us could possibly imagine the ways through which tomorrow's youth will encounter Beatles or Led Zep. I mean, today's youth encounter Rush through South Park and Guitar Hero, how great is that!

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Originally Posted by clutnuckle View Post
Good summary. I've never been one to buy into the whole 'music at this time is better'. I've found more concentrations of music that I like from the 60s and 70s, but that's only because I've binged on them. Equal (or at least very close) amounts of brilliance permeate the music world every year, decade, month, nanosecond, what have you.
I agree, or should I say, I share the view that the music made in the 60's/70's was generally better than today. No, let me rephrase: The majority of the music I listen to is concentrated around the 60's/70's, because there was still a load of crap made back then as well. One could argue that there was something in the water, that the times were such that it inspired musicians to expand and explore uncharted territories, and that this sort of general environment is all but absent today. I kind of agree on it, but only partly because I still think that the main thing is that there simply weren't as many bands back then as it is today, not to mention that there still were some crucial things that yet hadn't been tried out. Thus the percentage of groundbreaking quality acts were higher. But, once again, that itself is not very relevant at all (unless the main criteria is to find only truly revolutionary bands, in which case I rest my case).
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Old 01-08-2011, 12:07 AM   #49 (permalink)
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(Monarchy and democracy being used as figurative concepts here to illustrate presence and absence of totalitarianism, I presume, but that's just nitpicking. I don't actually want to pick nits).
I've always been terrible with forms of government and defining them perfectly.

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Well, I simply have to state my different stance here. I see almost nothing but progress during the last, say, 150 years. Remember what it is that steers the progression, at least where it's allowed to - people's needs and preferences. It's easy for you (and me) to deem certain functions as superficial and worthless in the longer run, but the thing is that 'superficial' is itself not a feature we are entitled to dismiss, and if it's 'worthless' in the eyes of the ones who are expected to use it, then it will disappear sooner or later. That happens all the time.

One not too distant example is the Cash-card, introduced here in Sweden during the late 90's, which basically was a, well, cash-card to which you could tie (a limited amount of) money and therefore pay with. The system never took off though, because it was deemed complicated by the stores and the customers alike, as well as totally redundant since we already had the traditional VISA's and other established cash- and creditcards tied directly to the bank accounts. Thus, it disappeared after just a few years; Consumer preference at work. Whatever is worthy stays (until something else does the job even better). If the hipsters want to stuff their iPhones with apps, let them. I'm happy with my Samsung.
Well that's a perfectly understandable thing to do (the discontinuing thing), but in the end... If the hipster wanna do it, let them? There are things that we objectively, as humans, need, and excessive luxury is not necessarily that. I wouldn't call pampering people a technological advancement. Something that facilitates existence, like what that card was intended to do (but ultimately failed as you said), I completely understand. But if it's just a random invention with really no merit aside from giving a few people a breather every once in a while because they now have an app that teaches you how to tie a tie... I don't really see that as inventive at all. It's inventive in the basic sense of the word, but a phone that has a ring with a frequency outside of the human capability of hearing is also inventive. What would that even accomplish? A few missed phone calls?

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Of course, every strain of newly-found knowledge has to start from previous knowledge. But it wasn't exactly easy to present new theories and discoveries that may have contradicted contemporary opinions. Copernicus for one, would certainly testify about that if he could.
I find that information to suit my theory just as well as yours... Discovery in the present day is much the same as it was back then, and thus there will be the same presence of suppression due to the fear of new, shocking ideas (though I suppose to far more limited degree). My last post probably made it seem as though I think everything came from the past, but I'll be clear that I know originality plays an important role.

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The difference here is that the musicians of yore (by whom I assume you mean those from the past centuries and back) simply didn't have the means to preserve their music, not to mention that they - as people - lived under more or less severe conditions which simply couldn't become better had we not started to explore such simple things as hygiene to prolong our lives. The constraints we, in contrast to our ancestors, effectively avoid are mainly the very basic ones, such as the need for food, shelter, hygiene, medicine, infrastructure and judicial protection from violence and theft, to start with. (This is the one reason which makes it impossible to have a musical discussion like this without bringing in historical mumbo-jumbo, so at least I am glad you brought it in.).
I don't see how this matters. I was talking about how their music was suppressed, and how it was forced into obscurity. A person's hygiene and their inability to get fame don't really affect that suppression. Those are just unlucky occurrences. The suppression, however, would happen when something occurred that was generally threatening to what a certain populous wanted - that doesn't necessarily inherit poverty or obscurity. Popular court artists and a lowly scrub could have been equally affected by the banhammer, so to speak. Much of the important music of any 'old' (very vague word but you'll get the gist) era was well-preserved, too; at least on the general end of the classical spectrum. The composers who generally changed the flow of musical history have lavished biographies, anthologies, and their music still remains popular, if only in the subconscious.

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I see no reason for any major, or even minor, collapse unless a large enough number of people actually want to achieve it. The society as a whole is just too stable, at least in the west and the far east (which by the way has undergone a similar technological evolution as the west, only thrice as fast) to crumble like any of the ancient empires once did. Of course I may be wrong, and if I am I'll gladly buy you a beer (if there is any left after armageddon, that is).
I'm not saying a revolution will happen tomorrow, but I do see a grave change coming. Possibly not in our lifetimes, but analyzing the course of history makes it pretty certain that something is bound to happen. Stability appears all over the timeline of this planet, and it can be very easily eliminated. I never really even hinted towards the apocalypse or anything that drastic. My most drastic claim in this thread was a 'mild' hint at North Korea taking over the world, and I meant that purely in humor.
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Old 01-08-2011, 12:53 AM   #50 (permalink)
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Well that's a perfectly understandable thing to do (the discontinuing thing), but in the end... If the hipster wanna do it, let them? There are things that we objectively, as humans, need, and excessive luxury is not necessarily that. I wouldn't call pampering people a technological advancement. Something that facilitates existence, like what that card was intended to do (but ultimately failed as you said), I completely understand. But if it's just a random invention with really no merit aside from giving a few people a breather every once in a while because they now have an app that teaches you how to tie a tie... I don't really see that as inventive at all. It's inventive in the basic sense of the word, but a phone that has a ring with a frequency outside of the human capability of hearing is also inventive. What would that even accomplish? A few missed phone calls?
Do such phones actually exist?

Anyway, yes, there are basic needs that we humans qua humans need to have fulfilled lest we drop dead, but I hope that you're not proposing to limit the means of fulfillment to these needs and these needs only? Based on what moral stance would you want to hinder the iPhone hipster to enhance his gadget with silly apps, based on his own decision and pay for it with his own means?

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Originally Posted by clutnuckle View Post
I find that information to suit my theory just as well as yours... Discovery in the present day is much the same as it was back then, and thus there will be the same presence of suppression due to the fear of new, shocking ideas (though I suppose to far more limited degree). My last post probably made it seem as though I think everything came from the past, but I'll be clear that I know originality plays an important role.
I'd rather put it this way: Discovery itself is a core ambition in the nature of the human psyche, as well as the quest to conceptualize the discoveries into something meaningful. The way we do it however, changes over time and even if we've refined the scientific methods up to now, we still have even more refined methods ahead of us.

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Originally Posted by clutnuckle View Post
I don't see how this matters. I was talking about how their music was suppressed, and how it was forced into obscurity. A person's hygiene and their inability to get fame don't really affect that suppression. Those are just unlucky occurrences. The suppression, however, would happen when something occurred that was generally threatening to what a certain populous wanted - that doesn't necessarily inherit poverty or obscurity. Popular court artists and a lowly scrub could have been equally affected by the banhammer, so to speak. Much of the important music of any 'old' (very vague word but you'll get the gist) era was well-preserved, too; at least on the general end of the classical spectrum. The composers who generally changed the flow of musical history have lavished biographies, anthologies, and their music still remains popular, if only in the subconscious.
It might sound odd to claim that your rise to musical fulfillment is hindered by the lack of soap, but I wasn't really talking about music in particular here, rather the conditions of mankind in general. In any case, they are not unlucky occurrenses as much as today's hygiene standard is a lucky one. Remember that we started without any means at all and that everything that make us live longer and healthier than ever and allow us to do more things than ever, are products of the workings of man and not nature-given.

Regarding the music of yore, I was not really talking about the musical elite that cooked up all the classical music we know and love still today. It was basically the lucky few that got access to the instruments and the musical education. And even so, they still would get no further than to immortalize their works on sheets and one would have to assemble a full orchestra (depending on the work, of course) to relive the experience. Meanwhile we can crank up our SoulSeek and type in the composer's name to do it. (Or buy ourselves a CD, which still is way easier than to gather together the local philharmonics).

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Originally Posted by clutnuckle View Post
I'm not saying a revolution will happen tomorrow, but I do see a grave change coming. Possibly not in our lifetimes, but analyzing the course of history makes it pretty certain that something is bound to happen. Stability appears all over the timeline of this planet, and it can be very easily eliminated. I never really even hinted towards the apocalypse or anything that drastic. My most drastic claim in this thread was a 'mild' hint at North Korea taking over the world, and I meant that purely in humor.
The apocalyptic scenario was not very serious on my part either, for the record. I still don't think it's accurate to make predicitons about the future, or even not-so-distant future, based on what has happened before, if only because of the differences in the basic conditions throughout history compared to today.
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