punkwalrus (punkwalrus) wrote,

Upcoming music...

For reasons I won't get into, I am judging some music. Most of these are by new artists, and almost all of them were at South by Southwest this year, so you have quite a mix of different genres. Like when I judge the AMVs, I am struck by just how much awfulness there is. I also wonder if when I find something even marginally good, I over-rate it because it was the first song in a series of terrible tunes that make anything look good.

Some notes I have from various acts.

If you are punk... don't just do the same shit as the punks before you. Talent in a band requires the cohesiveness of the entire band. The sharp turns you can all take without losing the drummer, for instance. Sadly, 90% of the punk bands out there seem like I am listening to 2-3 different songs all playing at the same time. Your drummers are just... terrible. The drummer is supposed to set the pace, and all he or she does it bang as quickly and randomly as they can. The lead singer --and the worst ones seem to be mostly female singers this time around-- is belting out her lyrics like she has somewhere to go later, has the car double parked, and paying the microphone electric bill by the minute. Okay, maybe you are being ironic and rebelling against the status quo as music represents in style and structure. Fine. Then have something to SAY. Oh, someone broke your heart? Wow, that's never been done before. Can you at least make it cleve-- no? Okay. You get a "1" on my little form.

To you rap wannabes. I mean... dayum. The sad thing is some of you have awesome back beats and a great drum kit or midi synth passing out some harmonies, but your lead "singer," if that's what he thinks he's doing, has no sense of rhythm, style, and doesn't say anything worth listening to. You know, the OG life was cool and all, in 1992, but if you want to consider yourselves talented, you have to at least be as good as the people you are imitating, and then be better. You aren't. Little "1" for you, too. Yeah, that right. I categorize you with the angsty white female punk failures.

But beyond the genre wannabes, I am starting to realize there's a genre in my head I am starting to call "douchebag rock." I can't quite tell you what this is, but it's the kind of music shallow college males listen to. The skinny ones who wander around the quad shirtless with messed up hair, often in various states of being hung over, calling people "bro," and trying to score some weed. At night, they hang out in clusters and try and pick up college girls desperate to fill the empty hole daddy and mommy's boyfriends left in them. The girls with french tipped toenails, sculpted makeup, bad postures, fake tans, and a plastic cup filled with cheap beer looking for guys with athletic shirts who go "WOOOOOOO" when they are having a good time watching sports on TV. These people listen to Nickelback, Fallout Boy, Creed, and the kind of rock where some guy slowly howls in a deep voice about how fucked up the world is. Filled with clever puns and analogies like, "She rises with the sun, but my heart is the one that ends up burning..." and such drivel that... while fine the first time someone did it... gets tiresome and cliche by 2009. We get it. You're MOODY. You have great abs and beefy arms and hair that covers your brows and you are STILL messed up because some girl messed with your heart, even if she never met you. It's not so much what they say, but the pretentiousness of their delivery like their pain is some how validated by their twist on words. Get OVER yourself. You are too late, this was DONE by Pearl Jam and Nirvana in the ealry 90s, only better, and with more validity and freshness that has now long since gone past the expiration date. There, I have done it too, a clever twist on words with a pun. Check "1" for your little band and the dollar store flip flops they wear to class.

But I have to be honest, there are a lot of original acts I am listening to. There's also a fresh new wave of retro works, to be slightly ironic. Some high power honky tonk (like Big and Rich, but less country), a few new wave synth refreshed, and more songs in non-English languages. The Hispanic community, in particular, are starting to explore new avenues of music. No more Sabado Gigante, Univison, and Menudo. Not even the Spanish version of Barry manilow, Julio Iglesias. Musica bueno. But there are some acts from other nations; Russia, France, and even J-Pop sensation Peelander-Z even made the list (I was on stage with them at a Kasucon years ago).
Tags: judging, music, writing
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