Life is short. Too short. And yet we are inundated with a tsunami of music, most of which are poorly produced. Worse, the music, while performed by talented musicians, is indicative of either the poor musical heritage of much of our world’s youth, or, their short attention spans. I say attention spans because there is little incentive to immerse in the many genres that fed our early histories of Rock.
Back in the ’50s, ’60s, ’70s, and much of the ’80s, we were lucky to bask in the wealth of hybrid genres that mixed in well together. Today, while we have plenty of music to listen to i’m beginning to feel stretched in my search of great new music. That makes me want to default to the times I was most happy with.
The answer is quite simple. I spend an extraordinary amount of time looking for music in today’s market to give me a feeling of stability. But as I age, I find that my time to listen to that which I cared so much about is being siphoned off by music that is not half of what is could be. The minimalism that pervades today’s musical mindset is frightening. And it’s boring. Worse of all, it’s a massive waste of time. In many ways.
Is this to say that we should stop altogether? No. That would be a mistake. As we did when we transitioned between each decade, finding that which we liked and dispensing with the rest, we can still do. I have fond sturdy classics in this period that will forever be a love of mine. White Hinterland’s “Icarus” is a brilliant piece. Heartless Bastards bring me immense joy. Wye Oak is an up and coming love for me. I do miss departures like ¡Forward Russia!, and others. But largely, when given the interesting appeal of .fun, who blatantly borrows (heavily) from Queen, and even more so from My Chemical Romance (who borrowed heavily from Queen but did a better job), I’m sure that even today’s audience is looking for something better than the usual song boiled in a half a dozen chords, standard drumming, and very little else.
Once in a while, you get studied bands that fully understand what musical legacies they are drawing from. Shiny Toy Guns is an example. With their “Waiting Alone”, you get a gorgeous piece of prime Rock/Pop that would have netted the band Top10 radio play for a month back in the ’80s. Watch. Listen. But they are a rare band. They draw largely from Cranberries, and Human League. But such a gifted display is still a nod to the past, not originality.
Great music will find you. It always does. That’s why you read sites like this one. Don’t give up your searches. But really, time is too short to dedicate to what is an unsatisfying end result. Expand on the music that you love. Go deeper into the catalogs, deeper into the bands that were out of your reach back then.
Bottom line…enjoy your music. However you get it.
Music…I’m waiting alone for you. You used to make me feel so special…