Is the quality of new music diminishing, or am I just getting old?

Richard Cranium

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It is right as it's my subjective opinion. Which mainstream bands from the last ten years do you rate, if clearly not the ones I've listed?
Bands? Barely any. Which is kind of my point: I don't think that, if you're listening to bands like Fall Out Boy, Mumford and Sons and Linkin Park, you're going to come away with a very flattering view of modern music.

I don't disagree with the initial premise of the charts being filled with more poppy crap now than they were when alt-rock was the big thing in music, but I would also suggest that a lot of people overrate the entire 90s alt-rock scene and conveniently forget that a) it was the cool thing to listen to at the time, which had the backing of every major label at the time (or in other words, it WAS pop music) and b) other than maybe half a dozen albums, not a whole of the popular stuff really holds up as anything overly special.

But anyway, we had this debate on the GD board at the time of Hottest 100, but instead it was about how 'alternative' music was better in the 90s than it is now, using the same bands, songs, and 'evidence'. Ignoring the rather large amount of irony in that being the case, I don't see the point of of analysing things too much. In the same way that every second big earning movie is a Marvel film, or that 20/20 cricket is more popular than Test cricket amongst the masses, the most popular music is formulaic, electronic-influenced pop music. It's the world we live in.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm gonna go listen to some Kendrick Lamar and think about how much better he is than the Chili Peppers, my favourite band as a kid.
 

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JimmyBeerCans

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I don't believe so but I avoid chart music for the most part, there's great musicians/artists all over the world to discover in every genre if you explore other avenues than the mainstream.
 

Lums23

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When was the last incredible rock album released?
Gang of Youths debut from a couple of year back. Royal Blood and The War on Drugs both put out really good albums the year before that
I actually think there is a huge opportunity for live music to return back to the main earner for artists and this may just bring back the band
Live music is already the main earner. Musicians don't make money off albums. It isn't going to bring back the rock band though. They're still just going to make music that interests them
 

La Dispute

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Gang of Youths debut from a couple of year back. Royal Blood and The War on Drugs both put out really good albums the year before that
I'm a big fan of Lost in the Dream. I haven't heard Gang of Youths but it sounds like something I'd be into.

The Monitor by Titus Andronicus is another one I'd say is incredible. I just wonder how many of these albums will be venerated in years to come?
 

dumb

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i kind of stopped relating to the charts, or popular radio when i became a teenager. the malaise at the current state of music is always there.
no disagreements about what current popular music is, mass produced, entertainment package, etc etc.

but i think there's always a misconception too, that music is dying because good stuff is no longer played on the radio or charting (which isn't necessarily what you've said, just commenting on the charts themselves). it's there, it's just not on the radio. music doesn't die, it just isn't played on popular radio or whatever. i guess jazz is the easiest example.
think of the converse... we have so much music at our fingertips these days. there are thousands of thriving subcultures buried beneath the parp we hear, all there at the press of a few keys. music may sound like it's dying, but people often don't know how to find current bands to listen to.
that, and if you can overcome the sense of relying too much on the past, back catalogues of bands you've never heard of can easily take up your music listening time.
 

ibd77

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Ive been a long time prog music fan and only recently discovered the group Ayreon.

This group has consumed all of my attention to the point that it is nearly become an obsession. This music is so damn good in all aspects. Story line, execution, arrangements, vocal talent, etc...

So to say there is no new good music out there is a farce.
 

La Dispute

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There's a few good ones out there






None of these (maybe Sufjan) will go down as classic albums, but they're good artists in their own right.

If you look hard enough, there's bound to be some modern band that corresponds to your taste. If you like Bruce Springsteen, Titus Andronicus have similar elements, for example.
 

Silent Alarm

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I think the era of the classic albums is over, music is way too disparate these days. That's why the Big Day Out died. I can't remember who on FasterLouder first mentioned it though I've claimed it as my own opinion. There's a mainstream, obvious culture ala shitty memes and that sort of thing, but these days the 'alternative' is probably bigger but those little bands within the alternative are way too different and there's way too many. Now there are 100 bands capable, in sound and quality, of playing a Big Day Out and yet you can only book 20 or so. Obviously the catchment isn't big enough. Back then you probably had 20 obvious go to bands who kids would eat up and it'd sell out.

I don't know, maybe guitar music is just boring? People don't do interesting stuff with it these days. But then I listen to good electronic and although it can be refreshing, thing is, a lot of electronic music sounds the same as other stuff released in the past year or two. Hmm. Who knows.
 

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Long Live HFC

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And those "old-school trancers" would be bang-on, too.;) Delirium remains one of my all-time favourite tracks.
silence is a great track but i actually liked 01-03 more. overall though, imo the (sound/instrument) quality of productions is much better now than it was in the 90s. the problem however is that today, every man and his dog is a DJ or producer, so there's correspondingly more shit to get through in order to find the good stuff. but it's definitely there.
 

footyfan78

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Lets face it, social media killed the mainstream music scene.
Maybe make it into a song like, Video killed the Radio Star.
Personally just browsing and find it amusing that the decade I still think had the least interesting music to me short term and long term is 1990's but for the OP that is his calibrated mark of apparent good stuff to him.
All I can say is thank F*** for Achtung Baby and Blood Sugar Sex Majik as those two albums on their own made the 1990's not a total black hole for me to find really good albums I could listen to over and over and rarely get tired of. I think there has been just as much shit in any era but some eras the really good stuff makes an era more memorable.

In last ten years most talented new musician I heard without even buying their music is Adele.
That is a voice that would shine through any era. No doubt in 50 years time her name from this present decade will stand out when most others will be forgotten.
 

The Unforgiven

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silence is a great track but i actually liked 01-03 more. overall though, imo the (sound/instrument) quality of productions is much better now than it was in the 90s. the problem however is that today, every man and his dog is a DJ or producer, so there's correspondingly more shit to get through in order to find the good stuff. but it's definitely there.
Haha. Yes, Silence was a great track, and that's what I meant; Delerium's Silence.

As for every man and his dog being a DJ - I don't disagree. In terms of non-mainstream music, you're right. I do think there's some very good DJs at the moment, depending on what you like. As you've said, you need to wade through it a bit, though.
 

The Unforgiven

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Maybe make it into a song like, Video killed the Radio Star.
Personally just browsing and find it amusing that the decade I still think had the least interesting music to me short term and long term is 1990's but for the OP that is his calibrated mark of apparent good stuff to him.
All I can say is thank F*** for Achtung Baby and Blood Sugar Sex Majik as those two albums on their own made the 1990's not a total black hole for me to find really good albums I could listen to over and over and rarely get tired of. I think there has been just as much shit in any era but some eras the really good stuff makes an era more memorable.

In last ten years most talented new musician I heard without even buying their music is Adele.
That is a voice that would shine through any era. No doubt in 50 years time her name from this present decade will stand out when most others will be forgotten.
Both great albums from the aforementioned acts. But if they're the only albums you can list that you didn't get sick of after listening to a few times then I don't know what to say.

Personally, I've listened to Nevermind, Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, Dookie, Automatic for the People, Throwing Copper, Smash, Cross road as well as Black, Load, Reload etc., plus many others.

Also, I don't think that the nineties was the *best* era at all. My favourite bands came out of the eighties, with thrash metal groups like Slayer, Megadeth, Anthrax and Iron Maiden just to name a few.

It would be remiss of me to add that I'm a huge fan of many sixties/seventies bands/artists which, at one point throughout my childhood, I thought was music for old farts. The talent through that era was phenomenal.
 
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PhatBoy

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The Australian alternative scene in the 1990s was about as good as its ever likely to get. You Am I, Powderfinger, Jebediah, Frenzal, Bodyjar, Regurgitator etc. great era.
 

JackOutback

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The Australian alternative scene in the 1990s was about as good as its ever likely to get. You Am I, Powderfinger, Jebediah, Frenzal, Bodyjar, Regurgitator etc. great era.
The '90s was great if you liked guitar based rock; grunge and Australian indie music was never better. For me, the '90s and '60s were the best decades of music. The '80s had some good bands that continued into the the '90s but had way too much trash.
 

footyfan78

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Both great albums from the aforementioned acts. But if they're the only albums you can list that you didn't get sick of after listening to a few times then I don't know what to say.

Personally, I've listened to Nevermind, Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, Dookie, Automatic for the People, Throwing Copper, Smash, Cross road as well as Black, Load, Reload etc., plus many others.
yeah, nah, none of those bands interested me in the slightest at the time.

Of some of the 1980's metal bands you mentioned I think only had some Iron Maiden stuff.
I probably got some Quiet Riot album on a cassette tape somewhere from back in the day...lol
 

Silent Alarm

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Of all the massively influential bands of the 1990s, and the fact the 90s was the start of the end of the mono-classic record, who the bloody hell is citing U2 and Red Hot Chili Peppers?!
 

PhatBoy

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Of all the massively influential bands of the 1990s, and the fact the 90s was the start of the end of the mono-classic record, who the bloody hell is citing U2 and Red Hot Chili Peppers?!

U2 produced the two most monstrous tours of the decade within 6-7 years of one another as well as one of the seminal records of the decade so I don't see why they wouldn't be cited?
 

Long Live HFC

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Haha. Yes, Silence was a great track, and that's what I meant; Delerium's Silence.
ha sorry, the italics were intended to designate a title, not to correct you! im the last one who could ever do that haha. i've been spending the past few months buying mp3s for some of my old vinyls, and it's surprising how many i've labelled incorrectly along the journey. even found one where i had the completely wrong artists listed. doh.

As for every man and his dog being a DJ - I don't disagree. In terms of non-mainstream music, you're right. I do think there's some very good DJs at the moment, depending on what you like. As you've said, you need to wade through it a bit, though.
yeah, it's a pain in the arse sometimes but i also don't miss the endless search for tracks on wax where there's only 100 copies in the world or whatever.
 

footyfan78

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1990's was just as empty as what it is out now.
ha ha,
Amusing some reactions.
I think we can safely say it is the later as far as the OP query.
 

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