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Old 02-18-2020, 09:39 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Can rock get a new style? Or will we retread forever?

I've been kicking around why we don't have a lot of great rock bands coming up these days (to me anyway) after having seen the Billboard 100 top rock songs of the decade. That is, of course, a god awful list, but worse off, they aren't even rock bands for the most part.

Last night I ended up at a Local H show, who you really should see live, and who never half-ass a performance. At any rate, I got to thinking about how Grunge, which seemed to be comprised of bands that loved Classic Rock, without stealing their style outright. Meanwhile, all the bands I loved in college, The Strokes, The White Stripes, etc. seemed to lift directly from the 60/70s and sound like bands of that time.

Grunge seemed to be reflective of the moment, while everything after 2001...really didn't? Maybe the moment was to replicate, but that seems like a cop-out. On a similar topic, I was watching an interview with Noel Gallagher he mentioned that part of the art of song writing was "Tip-toeing around other people's copyrights."

Am I giving the years 2001-2015 a bum wrap? Is that decade no different than anything else? Maybe will say "Well Nirvana stole the SLTS riff from Boston." Ok, but SLTS doesn't sound like "More than a feeling." Last Night sounds like a Tom Petty track.

The last great album of that 2001-2015 period, to me, was the Arctic Monkeys "A.M." which is mildly ironic because they attempted to rip off the strokes, and worked with Josh Homme to craft their bigger style on A.M. So to me, the band that should have sounded most derivative didn't.

To be fair, other bands like Hold Steady, My Morning Jacket, TV on the Radio, all managed to not sound like a total lift. Still, I wonder if we can't mash up old sounds with the modern culture and create anything new anymore. Not one band out there is dominating the "rock" space?

Which new rock album sounded like a revolution or a party? I'm leaning on guys who are slightly older than me and it's sad. Anyway, I thought I'd ruminate out-loud and see what comes of it.
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Old 02-18-2020, 09:53 AM   #2 (permalink)
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The electric guitar in the rock’n’roll format has run its course and has nowhere else to go

The only way rock can stop retreading is by broadening the definition of the word and in that case it isn’t rock anymore.

Chuck Berry - Birth (simple riffs)
Jimi Hendrix - Prime of Life (complexity)
Sonic Youth - Death (dissonance)

Everything is some variation on that and has to be because of the structure and accepted parameters of the genre.

All genres and periods run their course and dry up.
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Old 02-18-2020, 11:24 AM   #3 (permalink)
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There were a bunch of mathy "not sure if we're a jazz band or a rock band" groups coming out mid-2010s that I was hoping would be the next big wave of rock but it seems like that kinda fizzled out with the exception of black MIDI.

Will there be another leg of rock music? By nature the innovation that would spark such a thing is unpredictable or else it wouldn't be innovative, but I'm sure there will be at least something. For the evolution that OH put forward I wouldn't be surprised if guitar music took the trend of modernism where postmodernism deconstructed everything and what people are calling post postmodernism is taking those deconstructed pieces from SY and others to build something entirely new.

In the current climate I think that a new wave would work backwards from rap or electronic music in some new hybrid. I think that electronics-heavy rock is more unexplored than people realize (though some bands like Low are pushing that envelope), maybe that could extend to the guitar itself as well. From Manuel Göttsching to playing 100 Gecs on the guitar or some****. Whatever's new and happening, you ain't gonna find it on the radio until the boomers and probably the gen x'ers that safe rock is attempting to appeal to are dead or deaf though. Keep an eye on the RYM charts and labels you like for that good good in the meantime.

Side note: the "great artists steal" trope is tripe that derivative artists use to justify their existence.

EDIT: Moving this to the general music section.
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Old 02-18-2020, 12:32 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
For the evolution that OH put forward I wouldn't be surprised if guitar music took the trend of modernism where postmodernism deconstructed everything and what people are calling post postmodernism is taking those deconstructed pieces from SY and others to build something entirely new.
Can you give examples of that happening with what Coltrane gave us?

It doesn’t really prove anything if you can’t because jazz has always had a much more clear cut and linear trajectory.

If we use the term modern to mean Schoenberg / Cage and so on and post-modern to mean the next wave(s) like minimalists and ambient composers - I just don’t see where “rock” can go and still be rock.

But then again if classical means everything from baroque to minimalism (and I think that’s fair) then I don’t think rock’n’roll has moved past simple modernism. I still think that’s its cage but hey I’m just a fan. Imagining that **** is the purview of the artists.
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Old 02-18-2020, 12:33 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Side note: the "great artists steal" trope is tripe that derivative artists use to justify their existence.
RZA said that about sampling.
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Old 02-18-2020, 01:22 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by OccultHawk View Post
Can you give examples of that happening with what Coltrane gave us?

It doesn’t really prove anything if you can’t because jazz has always had a much more clear cut and linear trajectory.

If we use the term modern to mean Schoenberg / Cage and so on and post-modern to mean the next wave(s) like minimalists and ambient composers - I just don’t see where “rock” can go and still be rock.
There's a lot of guitarwork in bands like Krallice and Deathspell Omega that put Coltrane's fractal approach in a metal context. I don't know music theory well enough to say for certain but I think that Cardiacs also uses Coltrane changes in at least a few of their songs. Those are both very tangential though. Same goes for his influence on European free jazz since that field is more like the logical extreme of Ayler.

For a rock parallel of that, see something like Death Grips, Jpegmafia, and Ho99o9 making hip-hop with elements of and philosophies from punk, rock, and metal. That's the kind of thing I was thinking of when I said that a rock revival might work backwards from other genres. These artists could be the foundational stages of that, or it could come from some other reincarnation of rock influences evolving into a new rock subgenre. The next stage of life for rock might not be guitar music.

Back to Coltrane, it's hard to pin down where foundational influences like him start and end sometimes. I hear it in Mary Halvorson's playing, but it's just as much putting Sharrock through Braxton's lens with a good dose of Ornette and new ideas.

Brutal prog is probably the best answer despite toeing the line of not being jazz.





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RZA said that about sampling.
There might be more to what he said about it but I think he's underselling the artistry of sampling.

I think we all agree that rock has become played out and needs to adapt to survive.
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Old 02-18-2020, 01:28 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frownland View Post
For a rock parallel of that, see something like Death Grips, Jpegmafia, and Ho99o9 making hip-hop with elements of and philosophies from punk, rock, and metal. That's the kind of thing I was thinking of when I said that a rock revival might work backwards from other genres. These artists could be the foundational stages of that, or it could come from some other reincarnation of rock influences evolving into a new rock subgenre. The next stage of life for rock might not be guitar music.
Yes please take it out of the hands of redneck rockist trash and boring indie twats.
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Old 02-18-2020, 01:29 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Plot twist: the next wave of rock is a cross between Bruce Springsteen and Lil Dicky.
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Old 02-18-2020, 01:30 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Thankfully I don't think Bruce Springsteen really traveled past the purest of white people.
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Old 02-18-2020, 01:38 PM   #10 (permalink)
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There might be more to what he said about it but I think he's underselling the artistry of sampling.
As I posted in the literature thread I just read his book. He sampled **** all the time. He goes into great detail about what machines he used and how working samples is the same as playing any other instrument. It’s up to you what you do with it.

I consider him... I mean he’s so high up among the artists who can create fantastic sonic landscapes. Best best best... I don’t know - I’m growing weary of my hyperbolic self but let’s just say he’s my very favorite sound architect in all of hip hop. I consider him right there with Miles Davis in terms of importance.
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