“duh good old rock bands”

August 27, 2010


GW: It goes in cycles. In the early Eighties, people couldn’t get enough high-tech stuff on their records.
REZNOR: It ties in with a fear of change, which has brought about this current wave of retro–whether it be Seventies disco or Pearl Jam, which to me just sounds like a Seventies rock band. Or Lenny fucking Kravitz. He writes good songs; you think, “Sounds good. Almost like I heard it before.” I think he does a good job at what he does, but I find it completely uninteresting. That whole mentality of “real rock” and “back to out roots,” or “Let’s get back to what’s safe–to be a real band like the Who or Rolling Stones, with two guitars, bass and drums.” Some people find entering a new technological era kind of scary and think, “Let’s go back to what we liked when we were kids.” But when we were kids everyone thought Queen and Kiss were terrible. Now they’re a point of reference of “duh good old rock bands.”
GW: They were both in extreme critical disfavor.

One of my gripes with music fans who – i) complain of the modern rock music scene ii) love the rock n roll music of the past – is that they simply can’t seem to enter into the music of today. Sure, there is commerical pop-rock garbage churned out onto our TV screens, but I firmly believe that there is still good music to be found if you search for it. More so, in fact, with the internet at our disposal.

No, its not your typical GnR/Kiss/Zeppelin/Queen/Floyd/Beatles/Jam/Maiden/Metallica scene, but its still creative, and yes, there is still rock in it. It even takes bits of influences from your beloveds. What’s even more interesting is that all these “good old rock bands” these fans love to death seem, to me, to have been mainstream monsters of their times. Which means, this very group of rock aficionados failed to go out of their tiny little boxes and discover other, different music. Perhaps, they even ignored some mainstream behemoths of their own times*, which, if true, implies a further narrow-mindedness in their music taste – they were not ‘open’ to other music from the beginning, let alone now. I go to wikipedia and I come across all these genres that I had never heard of before – that I haven’t tasted even now – like new wave, hardcore, punk and all their varieties. Where the hell were these fans for them, now?

But they’re still caught up in the past, complaining of today. Hell, its the very reason I don’t like – nor listen to – these old bands. I’m sick of hearing praises over them, I’m sick of the mammoth fanbases they have while good unknown musicians of today are stuck with fans in orders of magnitude less, I’m sick of looking down memory lane, and I’m sick of the complaining. Sure, I’ve accidentally come across songs by these bands that I liked,and still do, but I’ve no intention to explore these bands further. I’m sick of them. They have had their fame, their money, their worship, their era. Give the mantle up to today’s musicians already.

Now, If the above quoted paras from a NIN interview are to be believed, several of our “good old rock n roll” bands were actually pretty sucky when they came out. That all these lists of “The Greatest 100/50/10 rock acts” (which usually include said bands) are probably BS. Which only adds to my conviction, and, pretty frankly, makes me happy as hell. Look, I’ve no problem with people making songs inspired by the ones they loved – but god, stop whining already, and stop pushing the old guard down my/our throat(s). Talk of good and bad music, not old and modern. And keep it independent of music era.

*: I’m assuming punk finally ‘popped’ and came into the mainstream sometime, with all the cult-like popularity it still has today.


2 Responses to ““duh good old rock bands””

  1. Asfandyar Says:

    agree with you here completely. thing is, music always, always, always evolves yet runs in a really weird dialectic.

    take all the heavily electro-fied pop from the past 2 or so years (Gaga and co. all started from, I think, Bring Sexy Back) and you’ll find its roots in 80s synth-pop, except the melodies aren’t incredibly cheesey.

    Aside from the usual fact that people who bitch about this shit can’t be arsed to actually look past MTV for their music, people really need to realize that if every band aped Metallica/Judas Priest/Led Zep/Cream/Crosby Stills & Nash/early Bob Dylan etc, that wouldn’t make me want to shoot them any less. Wolfmother are horrible for me because they’re such shit clones of Zep/Sabbath. Imagine a universe with cheap imitations like them peeing over every lampost.

    Fuck. Off. Thanks.

    • aerial_meds Says:

      “Aside from the usual fact that people who bitch about this shit can’t be arsed to actually look past MTV for their music”

      Haha, the last four names are new for me. I don’t think many people here know of them, so hearing unending praises for them wouldn’t tick me off as much. Outside our country, ofcouse, could be a different ballgame…Bob Dylan, for one, I know is a big name outside.

      Ah, yes… Wolfmother. Heard some song by them, liked it, but not enough to pursue further. But yes, caught up in the past… nothing wrong with that though, they can music of whatever kind they wish. Still, once again, I’d rather hear about Wolfmother rather than the bands I mentioned.

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