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Alvarez IV
Aug 3, 2010


Regarding the mold being broken by indie rock; I'd peg that as having happened a couple years ago, and claim that we're now in the very beginning of the ultra-saturation stage where everyone's realizing how lucrative a stripped-down earnest acoustic guitar song sung by a bearded Portlander is and is going to start churning them out with reckless abandon without realizing why they became popular in the first place. Indie-folk is the most recent iteration in the long trend of radio-friendly rock music (still counts as pop) because emo didn't get as huge as it was supposed to six years ago.

What I'm really waiting for is for EDM influenced pop to start getting a bit more distorted. The current dance-pop is very upbeat and uplifting and major key and I think we might collectively get bored of that and start mixing in more gritty types of EDM. I doubt we'll ever hear Skrillex or Deadmau5 types on the radio but there's got to be a halfway point between the very accessible Guetta stuff and the less house-y stuff. Deadmau5 is already sort of getting there by getting featured vocalists that aren't the traditional diva sopranos, but he doesn't seem to want to be at that level of mainstreamness that Guetta is.

If that happens, then by the time the indie-folk craze goes the way of glam-metal, pop-rock will need a new form to take and will grudgingly assimilate more electronic elements. On the bright side, we'll probably get a more accessible Nine Inch Nails out of this (I like NIN but I'd like to hear what their sound would sound like with some pop sensibilities behind it). On the downside, electronic-rock will be only slightly less lambasted than nu-metal was because rock fans hate hate HATE miscegenation (I'm painting with a wide brush but you know the types I'm talking about).

I think I'm gonna like this thread, no one takes you seriously when you want to talk seriously about pop music because I'm a twelve year-old boy and I'm disgusted at what my generation's come to, Like my comment on YouTube.

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Alvarez IV
Aug 3, 2010


Christmas Jones posted:

What did you think of Calvin Harris's latest? He does the Guetta thing of inviting tons of pop celebrities (more British than American, overall) onto his album, but his hooks are a lot rougher and darker sounding. He tends to lean on the traditional trance/house build pretty heavily, but at least the builds are fun and he breaks it up with the occasional clever instrumental.

I do like Harris a lot; he made me like a Ne-Yo vocal by somehow knocking the treacle out of his voice and making him sound decisive, and he managed to get Florence Welch some airplay while showing off her versatility. You're right about his reliance on traditional EDM song structure as well as his instrumentals, but it's still very clean even if it's comparatively rougher and darker. When I say gritty, I mean like Leftfield gritty, or in a modern sense Deadmau5 gritty (Deadmau5' low-end synths on Professional Griefers sound like fuzzy guitars run through lots of processing).

Also, I want to see more diversity in the featured vocalists used here. The guy who sings on Swedish House Mafia's Don't You Worry Child has a lower and rougher voice than Usher and Ne-Yo, and the women who sing on house songs are almost always diva types with their voices. I know this comes from the influence that disco had on house in the first place and I like it, but my theory with music is that diversity is good and welcome and I like it when incongruous elements come together (I didn't like Somebody That I Used to Know until I heard the radio remix).

Alvarez IV
Aug 3, 2010


After waiting over a year for Kesha to put something out (in pop-music time that's like an album's worth of singles), I wound up torn on her new direction. On one hand, the fact that she's taking bits and pieces from multiple genres makes me appreciate her ability more profoundly. Not only is she doing the typical pop-star "I'm going to show how 'real' I am by doing rock/country/forms of music that society deems as 'legitimate'" thing, but she's got a variety of genres within dance music itself; house, electro, dubstep, and many permutations of them. There's something for everyone this time around.

On the other hand, when Kesha first came out I appreciated her for her raw sound in a time when everything else on the radio was very polished and shiny, and now that she's cleaned up I miss bits of the old Kesha. Kesha as seen on Warrior couldn't write Tik Tok and even though we already have Tik Tok and many of the attempts she made to duplicate it kinda sucked, I would like to see a bit more of the filth that I came to know her for.

Either that or get her to release one of the genre experiments as a single (I know it won't happen but I can dream). Dirty Love wasn't as killer as I thought it would be (I had a very different vision of a Kesha/Iggy Pop collaboration), and Gold Trans Am is amazing but will never happen, even if she censors the language.

Sprat Sandwich posted:

What would've been embarrassing is if you had come here and said you liked zoophilia or something.

Listen to what you want, give zero fucks, there are no such things as guilty pleasures because if you like it you like it and that is that.

Music is a totally subjective thing that we only think is objective because of some very powerful people working for Rolling Stone who say what's okay and not okay to like. They do this because they think if music sounds like it did when they were young, they'll magically become young again, even though they are so old that they won't even reincarnate as young people. Sometimes they also do this because they don't like music made by/for women, blacks, or gays. If you enjoy something, there's no need to rationalize it away as a guilty pleasure or whatever. Do what you want and gently caress haters.

Alvarez IV fucked around with this message at Jan 31, 2013 around 16:45

Alvarez IV
Aug 3, 2010


My opinion on Macklemore is as follows: Same Love is cloying, treacly, pandering socially conscious, not-good-enough-for-that-brief-period-in-2010-where-everyone-and-their-mother-had-an-inspirational-song-to-capitalize-on-It-Gets-Better hip-hop, which would all be forgivable if the beat was better than it was. As for Thrift Shop, I only like it if I pretend that he's making fun of Portland types in addition to the conspicuous consumption of his contemporary rappers. My concern is that when he runs out of hip-hop tropes to make fun of, everyone will just realize how much of a big dork he is (and it's not because he's white, it's because he's a dork who can't say "motherfucker" without a rising inflection and thinks that putting the word "honky" in his song will make him as cool as Ice-Cube was when he put the word "friend of the family" into his song). We've had white rappers, we have female rappers, we're ready for gay rappers but we are not yet prepared to handle an uncool rapper as more than a novelty. Rock was over forty years old before Weezer came up (and don't try and cite Elvis Costello or R.E.M., we both know they're cool because they don't try where Rivers tries and fails) and hip-hop isn't quite there yet.

Alvarez IV
Aug 3, 2010


I'm not sure what this thread's definition of pop music is, but Fall Out Boy was pop when they came out and now they're off hiatus with a new song to boot. My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark (Light Em Up) is my favorite Linkin Park song since New Divide. I was never huge on FOB at their peak because even at twelve I was cynical enough to know when I was being pandered to (although not so much that I didn't love Linkin Park), but I think they hit their stride halfway through Infinity on High and that their first single Dead on Arrival is an underlooked pop-punk gem. It's just the one album I wasn't sold on. Same thing happened to me with Green Day, I thought I hated them until I realized that I just didn't like all the ballads on American Idiot.

But yeah, back to Light Em Up (like hell I'm dignifying the name of the song by typing it out). It seems like all the rock bands from ten years ago that want to stay vital are either going the Mumford & Sons folksy route or taking up EDM elements like Korn, I appreciate how FOB does neither and just says "we're gonna do a nu-metal song, kiss my rear end." Also, Patrick Stump is one of the best singers in modern rock and I love how he twists the word "fire".

Alvarez IV
Aug 3, 2010


Metal Loaf posted:

Do you think Psy will have another hit in America? I guess if he's able to come up with another ultra-memetic video it might take him all the way to number one under the new rules, but that obviously remains to be seen.

I don't doubt he'll try but the thing about memes is that they're impossible to force. The second you become the least bit conscious about what you're making, everyone watching can tell that you're standing outside with a mayo jar trying to catch lightning. Only the first time was a mayo jar, the second time it's some gigantic mayo jar-shaped contraption with lightning rods and conductors and flashing lights that everyone can see for miles and miles, and then not only will you fail to attract anything, you'll look stupid for bothering. People can smell desperate pandering and we don't like it a bit.

I know tons of artists with huge songs that would seem hard to follow up on manage to do so, but the internet meme aspect changes everything. I can't quite explain the difference between someone like Psy and then someone else like Gotye or Carly Rae Jepsen trying to get a second hit (though I don't think Gotye's shooting for it, and Jepsen managed to if you count her feature on Good Time, which I do because it turned that song from an elementary-school-dance jam into a junior-high-dance jam) but I know it's there.

Alvarez IV
Aug 3, 2010


Dark Horse kicks the poo poo out of Roar but I can't see it pulling in the numbers that Katy Perry singles are known for. It's too hip-hop in an age where hip-hop is no longer a guaranteed sell. Ten years ago, hip-hop was where EDM is now on the radio, and while I would never say that it isn't still vital or massive or anything, it's nowhere as ubiquitous or as integrated into pop music as it was then. You have guys like 2 Chainz and ASAP Rocky who only ever work with other rappers or Rihanna, and they get nowhere near the airplay on pop stations as they do on hip-hop ones. Then there's rappers like Nicki Minaj or Macklemore or Pitbull who will collaborate with pop musicians on pop songs that have more EDM or pop in them than hip-hop, if there's any at all. Trap, the type of beat that Dark Horse is built around, isn't the main driving force in pop music so much as it is the dominant form of an alternate equally popular type of music that is increasingly separating from pop, and Juicy J is awesome but cannot do features on mainstream tracks because he works best when he's spitting lines like "You say no to ratchet pussy, Juicy J can't," which will never ever ever make it close to radio.

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Alvarez IV
Aug 3, 2010


21 Pilots is trying to court the elusive adult baby audience. You can make a song about nostalgia, but you can't talk up how great early childhood was while complaining about paying bills. The former is targeted towards teenagers, the latter towards adults. That song does both and therefore neither. In addition, the music is to real depression what Linkin Park's sound is to fake depression.

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