inthe00s
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Subject: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/08/06 at 6:27 am

I often hear people (older folk who seldom listen to music) 'complain' that today's music is almost devoid of melody (of course this is hyperbole and exaggeration), but that it is sacrified for beat and style. I couldn't disagree more. Apart from the fact melody...well, is part of music so will be ever-present, music today is just as melodic if not more than much of the music of yesteryear. Today's 'emo', like 90s-three chord punk is actually far more bubblegummish and melodic than 'real' 70s punk, while Rock 'n' Roll sounded to be very unmelodic. Just an observation I've made.


Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/08/06 at 6:55 am

I think emo, as a whole, is (typical of pop-rock) a fairly melodic genre, especially in comparison to heavier forms of rock/metal, such as Slipknot which were popular in the late 90s/early 00s. A surprising amount of 'alternative' music is not very melodic at all - although the melodies tend to be a bit less 'textbook.'

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Donnie Darko on 05/08/06 at 11:26 am

The complaint really stems from two genres: metal and hip hop. However most hip hop songs at least have a bassline, and numetal is pretty melodic.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Apricot on 05/08/06 at 2:27 pm


I often hear people (older folk who seldom listen to music) 'complain' that today's music is almost devoid of melody (of course this is hyperbole and exaggeration), but that it is sacrified for beat and style. I couldn't disagree more. Apart from the fact melody...well, is part of music so will be ever-present, music today is just as melodic if not more than much of the music of yesteryear. Today's 'emo', like 90s-three chord punk is actually far more bubblegummish and melodic than 'real' 70s punk, while Rock 'n' Roll sounded to be very unmelodic. Just an observation I've made.


I agree.. there is a very definitive melody to most of today's music.. minus rap, which is rhythmically-centered, anyway.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: velvetoneo on 05/08/06 at 2:35 pm

I think we've sort of returned to melodicism with all the twee pop and indiemo.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Apricot on 05/08/06 at 2:38 pm


I think we've sort of returned to melodicism with all the twee pop and indiemo.


Quite so... it's very melody-driven.. think about it.. think back to a boy band.. I bet you know at least the melody to one of their songs.. it sticks with ya.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: ultraviolet52 on 05/08/06 at 2:42 pm

I agree that melody in songs have gotten better over the last few years. I think songs always have a melody, it's just how watered down can one kind of melody get after awhile. The 90's music had a lot of watered down melodies, but today it's more enriching and a bit more experimental.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: velvetoneo on 05/08/06 at 2:44 pm


Quite so... it's very melody-driven.. think about it.. think back to a boy band.. I bet you know at least the melody to one of their songs.. it sticks with ya.


"As Long As You Love Me..."

I think knowing every boy band and teenybopper pop song by ear is one of those signs that you were born between late 1986 and mid 1990, because your youth was totally saturated by that stuff.

Anyway...the '90s did have a fair amount of melodic music. Tori Amos, Natalie Imbruglia, Celine Dion are all very melodic. But the rock wasn't.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Apricot on 05/08/06 at 2:49 pm


"As Long As You Love Me..."

I think knowing every boy band and teenybopper pop song by ear is one of those signs that you were born between late 1986 and mid 1990, because your youth was totally saturated by that stuff.


Dude, the other day, we were waxing the cars.. listening to the radio.. I knew a few songs, like, Duran Duran, Depeche Mode, etc... I knew them kinda well.. but I knew every single part, melody, lyrics, backing.. to every boy band song. ;D

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: velvetoneo on 05/08/06 at 2:51 pm


Dude, the other day, we were waxing the cars.. listening to the radio.. I knew a few songs, like, Duran Duran, Depeche Mode, etc... I knew them kinda well.. but I knew every single part, melody, lyrics, backing.. to every boy band song. ;D


Exactly, it's almost creepy.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Donnie Darko on 05/08/06 at 3:36 pm


Dude, the other day, we were waxing the cars.. listening to the radio.. I knew a few songs, like, Duran Duran, Depeche Mode, etc... I knew them kinda well.. but I knew every single part, melody, lyrics, backing.. to every boy band song. ;D


How DARE you lump DM in with DD!!  ;D

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: velvetoneo on 05/08/06 at 4:01 pm


How DARE you lump DM in with DD!!  ;D



....

ANYWAY (  ;))...

I do think I know "Baby One More Time" perfectly. Very, very weird. One of those implicators of being part of the 1989-1990 colleague group.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: whistledog on 05/08/06 at 4:02 pm

There are melodies in rap music, only they are sampled from other songs that have melodies, while some rapper talks and rhymes overtop.  I wouldn't consider that melodic, but some would.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Apricot on 05/08/06 at 7:04 pm

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Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: velvetoneo on 05/08/06 at 7:16 pm


Well, again, rap is unique in the sense that it has no intention of having a melody.


I think soul is probably the best kind of music...if I had to quantify the results. Like good, propulsive, sensual, elevating '60s soul.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: sonikuu on 05/08/06 at 7:49 pm


"As Long As You Love Me..."

I think knowing every boy band and teenybopper pop song by ear is one of those signs that you were born between late 1986 and mid 1990, because your youth was totally saturated by that stuff.



I definitely agree with that.  I am particularly guilty of knowing pretty much every Backstreet Boys song.  What's worse is I'm actually starting to like the boy bands!  I don't know if it's nostalgia or what, but the boy bands were definitely better than the mainstream rappers of today.  As for the pop divas of the time, I really only know the chorus to them for some reason.  I can sing the entirety of NSync's "Tearin' Up My Heart" but I only know the chorus of Britney Spears "Baby One More Time".  Maybe this is because the boy bands were sometimes way too catchy for their own good, where as I never liked Britney, even when I was in sixth grade at the time.  Christina was okay, but she screwed up somewhere between her first and second albums.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/08/06 at 9:12 pm


The complaint really stems from two genres: metal and hip hop. However most hip hop songs at least have a bassline, and numetal is pretty melodic.


Not entirely; though it does stem from the fact metal/hip hop and certain kinds of r'n'b music reached popularity, but often those in the older generation sort of close their ears to any sort of modern music, no matter how melodic or sophisticated. Of course I'm no lover of modern mainstream music, and though the melodies are often quite basic, the music of this decade is as melodic as the 70s or even the 90s. The Boy bands, of course, harken back to the harmonic vocal groups of the 50s and 60s, and are the crooners of Generation Y.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: deadrockstar on 05/09/06 at 4:46 am

Most of the genres besides Metal and Hiphop probably have melody but the problem is that those two genres are very big and pervasive in the 2000s.  So I can see why if you don't really keep up with music carefully and seek out the better music, you might think today's music lacks melody.

I like some indie and everything- but I've come to the conclusion that music made after the grunge era began is just inferior- plain and simple.  None of it is as satisfying as the music made from the mid 60s and on into the 80s(well, some of the stuff in the 80s.. it started to decline then).

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/09/06 at 5:14 am

[quote author=

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: velvetoneo on 05/09/06 at 12:27 pm


I agree. Music back then seemed more meaningful, and more lasting in some respects. There are few bonafide 'classics' today - whereas even as recent as the late 90s, songs like 'Paranoid Android' or 'Semi-Charmed Kind of Life' became instant classics, and are still played endlessly on FM Radio today. Some attribute this to commercialism; I too used to hold this perception, but over the years I've come to realise since some bloke realised you could make a buck out of selling vinyl the music business has been a dog eat dog world. There is alot of good (mainly 'alternative') music today, but for some reason most of it lacks that magic ingredient, call it what you will, that was present up til the mid-90s.


I think it's passion, people nowadays just have imitation.

I actually think the classic period of alternative rock was about 1987-1992, with the classics like Slanted and Enchanted, Ritual de lo Habitual, Surfer Rosa, Doolittle, Out of Time, Automatic for the People, Daydream Nation, Blood Sugar Sex Magik, Little Earthquakes, Nevermind, Solitude Standing, etc. Of course, the later '90s had some classics as well: OK Computer, Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain, Odelay, Exile in Guyville, Under the Pink, Siamese Dream, but the Radiohead album I mentioned from 1997 is one of the last real greats.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: ultraviolet52 on 05/09/06 at 6:04 pm

I'll tell you what, nothing is as bad as no melody. Listen to an atonal piece by Schoenberg. Gosh, it's so depressing.  ;D

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: 5.19.86 on 05/09/06 at 6:10 pm


I agree. Music back then seemed more meaningful, and more lasting in some respects. There are few bonafide 'classics' today - whereas even as recent as the late 90s, songs like 'Paranoid Android' or 'Semi-Charmed Kind of Life' became instant classics, and are still played endlessly on FM Radio today. Some attribute this to commercialism; I too used to hold this perception, but over the years I've come to realise since some bloke realised you could make a buck out of selling vinyl the music business has been a dog eat dog world. There is alot of good (mainly 'alternative') music today, but for some reason most of it lacks that magic ingredient, call it what you will, that was present up til the mid-90s.


lol, actually the songs title is just "Semi-Charmed Life"  ;)

...Yeah, I'm Picky...So What  :D

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Apricot on 05/09/06 at 8:11 pm


I think soul is probably the best kind of music...if I had to quantify the results. Like good, propulsive, sensual, elevating '60s soul.


Melodically, it is the best.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/09/06 at 9:49 pm


I think it's passion, people nowadays just have imitation.

I actually think the classic period of alternative rock was about 1987-1992, with the classics like Slanted and Enchanted, Ritual de lo Habitual, Surfer Rosa, Doolittle, Out of Time, Automatic for the People, Daydream Nation, Blood Sugar Sex Magik, Little Earthquakes, Nevermind, Solitude Standing, etc. Of course, the later '90s had some classics as well: OK Computer, Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain, Odelay, Exile in Guyville, Under the Pink, Siamese Dream, but the Radiohead album I mentioned from 1997 is one of the last real greats.


Yes, Passion, Emotion, Soul...we call it by different names. I honestly think one's inspiration must come 'from somewhere' - musically that is too cerebral and 'deliberate' sounding - your super hipster style music, might be technically brilliant, but lacks the soul. That's why many preferred John Lennon's compositions to Paul McCartney's, because they felt he exuded more soul.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Dominic L. on 05/09/06 at 10:55 pm


I think soul is probably the best kind of music...if I had to quantify the results. Like good, propulsive, sensual, elevating '60s soul.


What is considered soul nowadays is headache inducing beats with yes, a melodic voice, but otherwise is just beat.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/09/06 at 11:12 pm


What is considered soul nowadays is headache inducing beats with yes, a melodic voice, but otherwise is just beat.


And most of the time the 'melodic' voice is nothing but a sample loop from some old record from the 60s or 70s.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: MaxwellSmart on 05/09/06 at 11:12 pm


I'll tell you what, nothing is as bad as no melody. Listen to an atonal piece by Schoenberg. Gosh, it's so depressing.  ;D

Schoenberg's music is not atonal. Some of it is depressing. Arnold Schoenberg devised the twelve-note scale (aka twelve-tone scale). He is the most influential composer of the last 100 years and is the musical father of all my favorite composers!!!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twelve-tone_technique
The music of Schoenberg, Webern, and Berg was called "atonal" in a pejorative manner by its detrectors, but it is a misnomer.

Cage, Stockhausen, Reich, Lucier--some of my favorites--did write truly atonal music and stretched the boundaries of what could be called music. God bless them.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: ultraviolet52 on 05/10/06 at 12:14 am


Schoenberg's music is not atonal. Some of it is depressing. Arnold Schoenberg devised the twelve-note scale (aka twelve-tone scale). He is the most influential composer of the last 100 years and is the musical father of all my favorite composers!!!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twelve-tone_technique
The music of Schoenberg, Webern, and Berg was called "atonal" in a pejorative manner by its detrectors, but it is a misnomer.

Cage, Stockhausen, Reich, Lucier--some of my favorites--did write truly atonal music and stretched the boundaries of what could be called music. God bless them.


You know what- I had someone else in my head when I wrote that. It wasn't Schoenberg. I was wrong. Thanks for letting me know because I had to reference what I had listened to previously in my music class to remember that it wasn't Schoenberg. Yes, God bless each and all of them.

I'm really not saying atonality isn't my thing, but some of it can be downright wretched. I am a more melodic person, so when things go awry in a musical piece and it sounds like pots and pans with no cohesion, it's just not what I wanna hear at 3am before I fall asleep. Maybe at 3pm, during the day. lol  ;D

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: MaxwellSmart on 05/10/06 at 10:42 am


You know what- I had someone else in my head when I wrote that. It wasn't Schoenberg. I was wrong. Thanks for letting me know because I had to reference what I had listened to previously in my music class to remember that it wasn't Schoenberg. Yes, God bless each and all of them.

I'm really not saying atonality isn't my thing, but some of it can be downright wretched. I am a more melodic person, so when things go awry in a musical piece and it sounds like pots and pans with no cohesion, it's just not what I wanna hear at 3am before I fall asleep. Maybe at 3pm, during the day. lol  ;D

Twelve-tone music is sometimes called "atonal" because it has no "dominant key."* Western music developed over the centuries  on the pentatonic scale, everything from the sonata to the Irish reel. We find different traditions in so-called "Middle Eastern" and "Far Eastern" cultures. It's no coincident that many great composers of twelve-tone music came from California--Henry Cowell, John Cage, Lou Harrison--because the grew up hearing the music of Chinese immigrants. Lou Harrison was the first Western composer to fully incorporate Balinese gamelan music into Western symphonic forms.
I produce a radio program of modern, avant-garde, experimental, and electroacoustic musics. My goal is to expose more ears to these musical forms, but I have to accept the fact that it will always have a limited audience. Most folks just react more positively to homophonic music with the melody, harmony, and rhythms Western ears are accustomed to.

I do find it ironic that the biggest-selling music of today rap/hip-hop is based on rhythm alone, with melody and harmony being secondary, if present at all!

*The Nazi Party forbade twelve-tone music. They called it "Bolshevik." I don't know if this had anything to with its anti-authoritarian streak, each note posessing "equal" value, no "dominant" key. I think the Nazis just didn't like it. It was art for art's sake, not die Volksmusik. The funny thing is, it was not Bolshevik music. Stalin also forbade twelve-tone, serialism, dissonance, or anything that smacked of what he called "Formalism." What is exactly is "Formalism"? You'll have plenty of time to think about that on your train ride to Siberia. Here's another irony, another of my faves, Luigi Nono (Schoenberg's son-in-law) was a devoted life-long communist. The Kremlin even invited Nono to Moscow...but they told him he'd better leave his "Formalist" music in Naples!
http://www.inthe00s.com/smile/08/rainote.gif

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Apricot on 05/10/06 at 2:35 pm


What is considered soul nowadays is headache inducing beats with yes, a melodic voice, but otherwise is just beat.


Modern-Soul is pretty much just Smooth R&B.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: velvetoneo on 05/10/06 at 3:05 pm

I want a revival of traditional, '60s-'70s style soul.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/10/06 at 8:52 pm


I want a revival of traditional, '60s-'70s style soul.


Young people wouldn't like the brass accompaniment/instrumentals of 60s and 70s soul...they prefer hip-hop beats.  ::)

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: velvetoneo on 05/10/06 at 8:53 pm


Young people wouldn't like the brass accompaniment/instrumentals of 60s and 70s soul...they prefer hip-hop beats.  ::)


Maybe the next generation will. It's surprising, since alot of us know it (and secretly love it) as our parents were obsessed with stuff.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/10/06 at 8:57 pm


Maybe the next generation will. It's surprising, since alot of us know it (and secretly love it) as our parents were obsessed with stuff.


Soul is sort of an acquired taste for some...but once you get into it, it's one of the most amazing musical experiences one can get. It's a pity I'll never get to see Otis Redding, James Brown, Aretha Franklin or one of those old soul legends live. I'm blown away just listening to their records, but to actually hear them live would be out of this world.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/11/06 at 8:36 pm

bump

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: ultraviolet52 on 05/12/06 at 6:49 pm


Twelve-tone music is sometimes called "atonal" because it has no "dominant key."* Western music developed over the centuries  on the pentatonic scale, everything from the sonata to the Irish reel. We find different traditions in so-called "Middle Eastern" and "Far Eastern" cultures. It's no coincident that many great composers of twelve-tone music came from California--Henry Cowell, John Cage, Lou Harrison--because the grew up hearing the music of Chinese immigrants. Lou Harrison was the first Western composer to fully incorporate Balinese gamelan music into Western symphonic forms.
I produce a radio program of modern, avant-garde, experimental, and electroacoustic musics. My goal is to expose more ears to these musical forms, but I have to accept the fact that it will always have a limited audience. Most folks just react more positively to homophonic music with the melody, harmony, and rhythms Western ears are accustomed to.

I do find it ironic that the biggest-selling music of today rap/hip-hop is based on rhythm alone, with melody and harmony being secondary, if present at all!

*The Nazi Party forbade twelve-tone music. They called it "Bolshevik." I don't know if this had anything to with its anti-authoritarian streak, each note posessing "equal" value, no "dominant" key. I think the Nazis just didn't like it. It was art for art's sake, not die Volksmusik. The funny thing is, it was not Bolshevik music. Stalin also forbade twelve-tone, serialism, dissonance, or anything that smacked of what he called "Formalism." What is exactly is "Formalism"? You'll have plenty of time to think about that on your train ride to Siberia. Here's another irony, another of my faves, Luigi Nono (Schoenberg's son-in-law) was a devoted life-long communist. The Kremlin even invited Nono to Moscow...but they told him he'd better leave his "Formalist" music in Naples!
http://www.inthe00s.com/smile/08/rainote.gif


Exactly. See, I took a music course about a year ago and I was introduced to pentatonic scale and the 12 tone scale and all that jazz. I had never known about those before. I also learned of one where all they use is the black keys. I enjoy listening to almost anything and I was glad our teacher introduced all these different styles as I would have never known of them unless just by chance someone introduced them to me.

Atonal is interesting, to say the very least. It may not be my favorite, but I will listen to it just to try and grasp it and understand it. It's too bad Hitler couldn't do the same. The man was too rigid  ;D

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/12/06 at 8:46 pm

Yes 'melody' itself is subjective; what one person may find an appealing melody, others won't, but there are certain 'principles' regarding the acoustics of a song which mean that we all, to some degree, prefer certain 'sounds.' It also depends on the mood you're in, I spose, an upbeat song for a happy mood, something slower if you want to relax.etc. I'm also becoming interested in other scales like the pentatonic scale of Eastern music, especially Indian music, and European folk music as well. Anyone who just listens to pop music is really depriving themselves.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Apricot on 05/12/06 at 9:03 pm


Anyone who just listens to pop music is really depriving themselves.


Some of them don't like irregular things like that.. they have very mainstreamed Western ears.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/12/06 at 9:38 pm


Some of them don't like irregular things like that.. they have very mainstreamed Western ears.


Yeah, anything that isn't your standard 'pop' chord progression is 'weird' to them, and hence not listenable material.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: bbigd04 on 05/12/06 at 9:40 pm


Anyone who just listens to pop music is really depriving themselves.


Very true, there's plenty of music out there which is why I'm someone who's willing to listen to almost anything.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/12/06 at 9:56 pm


Very true, there's plenty of music out there which is why I'm someone who's willing to listen to almost anything.


Anything you won't listen to?

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: MaxwellSmart on 05/12/06 at 9:57 pm


Exactly. See, I took a music course about a year ago and I was introduced to pentatonic scale and the 12 tone scale and all that jazz. I had never known about those before. I also learned of one where all they use is the black keys. I enjoy listening to almost anything and I was glad our teacher introduced all these different styles as I would have never known of them unless just by chance someone introduced them to me.

Atonal is interesting, to say the very least. It may not be my favorite, but I will listen to it just to try and grasp it and understand it. It's too bad Hitler couldn't do the same. The man was too rigid  ;D

Hey, guess what? I first heard of twelve-note music and such in a music appreciation course I took my freshman year of college! I'd wager most students in my class forgot about most of that stuff. I didn't! It was the starting point for so much that I hold dear. For instance, the cassettes accompanying our text (yes, it was that long ago, cassettes!) had a sample of Henry Cowell's "The Banshee,"  Milton Babbitt's "Ensembles for Synthesizer," it had a sample of Balinese Gamelan music, and the textbook had a blurb about Harry Partch, who later become one of my all-time favorite composers!
http://www.corporeal.com/art_inst/bumshow/images/sfposter_med.jpg

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: bbigd04 on 05/12/06 at 10:02 pm


Anything you won't listen to?


It depends, there are a few songs that I just do not like to listen to at all. That nasty Play song by David Banner is one that I'd prefer not to hear, Ms. New Booty of course, I get tired of most emo real fast, Bonanza by Akon (absolute crap).

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: ultraviolet52 on 05/13/06 at 2:47 am


Hey, guess what? I first heard of twelve-note music and such in a music appreciation course I took my freshman year of college! I'd wager most students in my class forgot about most of that stuff. I didn't! It was the starting point for so much that I hold dear. For instance, the cassettes accompanying our text (yes, it was that long ago, cassettes!) had a sample of Henry Cowell's "The Banshee,"  Milton Babbitt's "Ensembles for Synthesizer," it had a sample of Balinese Gamelan music, and the textbook had a blurb about Harry Partch, who later become one of my all-time favorite composers!
http://www.corporeal.com/art_inst/bumshow/images/sfposter_med.jpg


Well, that makes me feel better (in some way) that you also discovered that kind of music byway of your music appreciation course. I took the course fairly seriously when I'm sure some of the other kids didn't. Some were already music majors who just needed it to get their degree, so they sort of slacked off when they could've done better. lol, cassettes probably would have been the thing about 12-15 years ago, but yes, CD's are now the preferred medium.

I'll have to check these artists that you are so fond of. Once I'm out of school (which is only a few weeks) I can devote more time to leisurely things :0)  ;D

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: danootaandme on 05/13/06 at 9:32 am

I've gone into this before.  There is so much music, and so many choices out there that people who complain about music today as compared to yesterday are a bit foolish.  All one has to do is change genres, look for the kind of music you want to hear.  I am a big station switcher and find that I like a little bit of everything.  It is one thing to compare musicians within a genre, but you really can't say one genre is "better" than another, or the music from one generation is better than that of another.  It is all subjective.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Apricot on 05/13/06 at 10:10 am


Yeah, anything that isn't your standard 'pop' chord progression is 'weird' to them, and hence not listenable material.


Something that really bothers me is the use of string orchestras in pop music. It's almost always added for a sappy, sad effect.. and it almost always fails. Have you noticed this? It's a terrible cliche in pop.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/13/06 at 10:13 am


Something that really bothers me is the use of string orchestras in pop music. It's almost always added for a sappy, sad effect.. and it almost always fails. Have you noticed this? It's a terrible cliche in pop.


Unusual point you raise...I've never really noticed that. I thought strings in pop music were more a 60s/70s thing, with most backing nowadays rock/synth based. But I'll have a closer listen to current 'pop' music...

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Apricot on 05/13/06 at 10:15 am


Unusual point you raise...I've never really noticed that. I thought strings in pop music were more a 60s/70s thing, with most backing nowadays rock/synth based. But I'll have a closer listen to current 'pop' music...


It's not AS frequent, especially today.. but, like, the Howie Day song "Collide" uses it, I'm sure you know that Aerosmith song "Don't Wanna Miss A Thing", etc.

It's not a very frequent occurence, but it happens enough for me to notice it.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: deadrockstar on 05/13/06 at 7:57 pm


I've gone into this before.  There is so much music, and so many choices out there that people who complain about music today as compared to yesterday are a bit foolish.  All one has to do is change genres, look for the kind of music you want to hear.  I am a big station switcher and find that I like a little bit of everything.  It is one thing to compare musicians within a genre, but you really can't say one genre is "better" than another, or the music from one generation is better than that of another.  It is all subjective.


Well, in my opinion the music made from the mid 60s through the mid 70s was superior to the music that has come afterwards.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Dominic L. on 05/13/06 at 8:03 pm


Schoenberg's music is not atonal. Some of it is depressing. Arnold Schoenberg devised the twelve-note scale (aka twelve-tone scale). He is the most influential composer of the last 100 years and is the musical father of all my favorite composers!!!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twelve-tone_technique
The music of Schoenberg, Webern, and Berg was called "atonal" in a pejorative manner by its detrectors, but it is a misnomer.

Cage, Stockhausen, Reich, Lucier--some of my favorites--did write truly atonal music and stretched the boundaries of what could be called music. God bless them.


Wow, we just learned about this in music comp. class, I composed a 12 tone piece, it has a melody, just not a very pretty one. :P

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/13/06 at 9:55 pm

Do you think there will ever be a stage when 'virtual instruments' pre-recorded instruments, will replace session musicians? I'm more talking the super-commercial groups, who try to cut costs with everything, no so much the less mainstream groups, who, of course will always provide an opportunity for budding musicians. I suspect it's happening alot more than we think...

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Dominic L. on 05/13/06 at 10:33 pm

Hasn't that already happened? ^

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Apricot on 05/13/06 at 10:35 pm


Do you think there will ever be a stage when 'virtual instruments' pre-recorded instruments, will replace session musicians? I'm more talking the super-commercial groups, who try to cut costs with everything, no so much the less mainstream groups, who, of course will always provide an opportunity for budding musicians. I suspect it's happening alot more than we think...


That's always existed, it's called Pop since 1980.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/13/06 at 11:20 pm


That's always existed, it's called Pop since 1980.


But today's virtual instruments sound so good they are almost like the real thing. Yes, synths were big in the 80s, but that was really 'synth' music. Now they are passing instrumental music -like strings.etc, off as instrumental music by using virtual instruments. I'm certainly not against use of technology.etc in music production, but I fear an increasingly competitive industry and cheaper technology will mean more music is truly 'synthesised' by computer.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: ultraviolet52 on 05/14/06 at 2:07 am


But today's virtual instruments sound so good they are almost like the real thing. Yes, synths were big in the 80s, but that was really 'synth' music. Now they are passing instrumental music -like strings.etc, off as instrumental music by using virtual instruments. I'm certainly not against use of technology.etc in music production, but I fear an increasingly competitive industry and cheaper technology will mean more music is truly 'synthesised' by computer.


I think violens will always be difficult to immitate. Something as perfect sounding as that should never be synthesized - totally. I could never listen to music again, if that were the case. (this mainly refers to classical, not pop - because pop music already does enough of that)

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: velvetoneo on 05/14/06 at 2:18 am

Trimac, you believe in tech too much  ;)...

But, yeah, I think the use of violins is very rarely successful. There are a few good examples of their use, though: "Papa Don't Preach" by Madonna and "Eleanor Rigby" are the notable ones. More successful is synths imitating violins in sort of a peripheral way, like in "West End Girls" by the Pet Shop Boys. Violins always sounded good to me in disco, though.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: ultraviolet52 on 05/14/06 at 2:23 am


Trimac, you believe in tech too much  ;)...

But, yeah, I think the use of violins is very rarely successful. There are a few good examples of their use, though: "Papa Don't Preach" by Madonna and "Eleanor Rigby" are the notable ones. More successful is synths imitating violins in sort of a peripheral way, like in "West End Girls" by the Pet Shop Boys. Violins always sounded good to me in disco, though.


Yeah, with some songs it seems to fit just right (the use of violins) and in other cases it sounds too fake and processed. For example, if you purchase a cheapo CD that has remakes of classic songs and they opt for the synth violin rather thant the real thing, it just sounds too fake and I can't STAND that. To me, it even makes your taste in music seem "cheap" since you couldn't even find a recording with "real" instruments. Again, this goes for classical, not pop. For some reason, pop can pull this stuff off because pop is a lot about the production value more than anything else.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/14/06 at 9:38 am


Trimac, you believe in tech too much  ;)...

But, yeah, I think the use of violins is very rarely successful. There are a few good examples of their use, though: "Papa Don't Preach" by Madonna and "Eleanor Rigby" are the notable ones. More successful is synths imitating violins in sort of a peripheral way, like in "West End Girls" by the Pet Shop Boys. Violins always sounded good to me in disco, though.


I think you underestimate techno, velvet!

Without tech we'd be living boring, 'natural' lives - as nature intended. We wouldn't be able to discuss changes in 'pop culture' because culture would remain the same for millenia or even longer. We wouldn't even have decades! lol

But music is one area technology should not totally take over like communications, computing.etc

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Apricot on 05/14/06 at 11:04 am


But today's virtual instruments sound so good they are almost like the real thing. Yes, synths were big in the 80s, but that was really 'synth' music. Now they are passing instrumental music -like strings.etc, off as instrumental music by using virtual instruments. I'm certainly not against use of technology.etc in music production, but I fear an increasingly competitive industry and cheaper technology will mean more music is truly 'synthesised' by computer.


That could never truly replace good musicians.. although they really need to get string orchestras out of popular music.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: velvetoneo on 05/14/06 at 1:22 pm


I think you underestimate techno, velvet!

Without tech we'd be living boring, 'natural' lives - as nature intended. We wouldn't be able to discuss changes in 'pop culture' because culture would remain the same for millenia or even longer. We wouldn't even have decades! lol

But music is one area technology should not totally take over like communications, computing.etc


I think that you overestimate it and I underestimate it, maybe... :D I just try to remember people in the 1950s thought we'd be living in spaceships with telepathy and robot maids by 2000 whenever I think of technological progress in the future.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: danootaandme on 05/14/06 at 3:25 pm


Well, in my opinion the music made from the mid 60s through the mid 70s was superior to the music that has come afterwards.


There was a lot of questionable stuff in the 60's and 70's too.  The stuff that gets played is the stuff that has stood the test of time.  How often do you hear Ultimate Spinach?

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: velvetoneo on 05/14/06 at 5:39 pm

The mid-'60s to mid-'70s were good, yes, but I personally think sort of overrated. Some classic rock and pop are amazing (see: The Beatles and most early British Invasion, folk rock and '60s folk pop, Dusty Springfield/Dionne Warwick and their like, Motown, '60s soul like Aretha and Otis, early David Bowie, some '70s singer-songwriters), but alot of it is kept alive by the boomer masses and is pretty overrated. See: substandard stadium rock like Grand Funk Railroad, '70s folk-pop like Harry Chapin/Jim Croce/John Denver, etc. I understand the merit of but don't like stadium/classic rock from the '70s, and Philly/Memphis soul is pretty good.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/16/06 at 8:22 am


The mid-'60s to mid-'70s were good, yes, but I personally think sort of overrated. Some classic rock and pop are amazing (see: The Beatles and most early British Invasion, folk rock and '60s folk pop, Dusty Springfield/Dionne Warwick and their like, Motown, '60s soul like Aretha and Otis, early David Bowie, some '70s singer-songwriters), but alot of it is kept alive by the boomer masses and is pretty overrated. See: substandard stadium rock like Grand Funk Railroad, '70s folk-pop like Harry Chapin/Jim Croce/John Denver, etc. I understand the merit of but don't like stadium/classic rock from the '70s, and Philly/Memphis soul is pretty good.


Yes, that's been something covered many times. A large percentage of 60s and 70s music was garbage, the same as today. Yet for some reason I think the period 1967-1971 seemed least touched by fluffy radio-friendly pop, and most by the emergence of the 'adult' genre of rock, which was also popular with the 'kids' (read: teenagers). It was an era when the most popular bands were the Jefferson Airplane, Steppenwolf the Doors, the Messenger Serivce, whom all played on the Ed Sullivan and Dick Clark show. Then with shows like 'the Partridge Family' came countless imitators and a descend into sub-standard pop.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: deadrockstar on 05/16/06 at 8:27 am


Yes, that's been something covered many times. A large percentage of 60s and 70s music was garbage, the same as today. Yet for some reason I think the period 1967-1971 seemed least touched by fluffy radio-friendly pop, and most by the emergence of the 'adult' genre of rock, which was also popular with the 'kids' (read: teenagers). It was an era when the most popular bands were the Jefferson Airplane, Steppenwolf the Doors, the Messenger Serivce, whom all played on the Ed Sullivan and Dick Clark show. Then with shows like 'the Partridge Family' came countless imitators and a descend into sub-standard pop.


There may be a similar percentage of garbage, but the "Best" music of today is nowhere near as good as the "Best" from back then.  That is my point.  There are no bands now as good as the Stones, the Beatles, Jefferson Airplane, Moody Blues, Grateful Dead etc.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/16/06 at 8:32 am

[quote author=

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/22/06 at 6:11 am

It's often not that a song lacks a melody, but that the melody is very basic and contrived. Doing want to seem too proud, but I've composed melodies better than some songs I've heard on the radio.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/23/06 at 8:59 am

Like that new Robbie Williams' song, for example...

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Cafe80s on 05/25/06 at 9:59 am


The complaint really stems from two genres: metal and hip hop. However most hip hop songs at least have a bassline, and numetal is pretty melodic.

I can see any attempt to debate this here might be futile, but i'll have to disagree with many of you. Firstly the metal of yesteryear was by far more melodic than any numetal & possibly emo but particularily numetal. In fact the guitar work for both of the above is extremly amateurish & lacks melody especially compared to classic metal or rock of days gone by. Emo & numetal basically all has a similar repetetive chord structure & the same sound (equipment, production & vocals) that makes almost every one of those bands sound almost exactly the same. I'm disturbed that the the original poster of this thread went as far as saying "Rock 'n' Roll sounded to be very unmelodic" At least in the past if bands had a similar style & sounded slightly the same they didn't actually sound  quite literally "exactly" the same, especially when it came to vacals.
When i was 9 a relative bought me Joe Satriani's Surfing With The Alien on vinyl as a gift & i was totally blown away by it & it possibly changed my life & played a big part in shaping the taste in music that i still have today. That record has a style of guitar playing that was typical of that era & that album itself is 100 times more melodic than anything i've heard from any emo or numetal band. Aparently it's the vocals of those 2 genres that's "supposedly" meant to be more melodic, but to me every one of those bands sounds exactly the same vocally, whiney & annoying & the lyrics are always about the same crap. Woe is me, i'm so fragile & alone & somewhere along that tone, how depressing & boring. One thing i can honestly say about the music that's currently out there is that most of it lacks the excitment & energy of some older music. Anyhow since when did medeocity become a good thing, it seems to be everywhere i look nowadays.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/25/06 at 10:04 am


I can see any attempt to debate this here might be futile, but i'll have to disagree with many of you. Firstly the metal of yesteryear was by far more melodic than any numetal & possibly emo but particularily numetal. In fact the guitar work for both of the above is extremly amateurish & lacks melody especially compared to classic metal or rock of days gone by. Emo & numetal basically all has a similar repetetive chord structure & the same sound (equipment, production & vocals) that makes almost every one of those bands sound almost exactly the same. I'm disturbed that the the original poster of this thread went as far as saying "Rock 'n' Roll sounded to be very unmelodic" At least in the past if bands had a similar style & sounded slightly the same they didn't actually sound  quite literally "exactly" the same, especially when it came to vacals.
When i was 9 a relative bought me Joe Satriani's Surfing With The Alien on vinyl as a gift & i was totally blown away by it & it possibly changed my life & played a big part in shaping the taste in music that i still have today. That record has a style of guitar playing that was typical of that era & that album itself is 100 times more melodic than anything i've heard from any emo or numetal band. Aparently it's the vocals of those 2 genres that's "supposedly" meant to be more melodic, but to me every one of those bands sounds exactly the same vocally, whiney & annoying & the lyrics are always about the same crap. Woe is me, i'm so fragile & alone & somewhere along that tone, how depressing & boring. One thing i can honestly say about the music that's currently out there is that most of it lacks the excitment & energy of some older music. Anyhow since when did medeocity become a good thing, it seems to be everywhere i look nowadays.


Perhaps my assertion that Rock 'n' Roll lacked melody was a bit pre-mature. I was going by the fact it tended to rely more on a beat (e.g. Chuck Berry, even early Elvis, Little Richard, Eric and the Dominoes). My personal experience was that Chuck Berry's early stuff wasn't as melodic in a bubble-gum way as Nu-metal and pop punk/emo (think of 'All American Rejects, Good Charlotte.etc). Of course not knowing the specifics about chords.etc, I go by what I think, and from what I hear alot of older music is not as recogniseably melodic (think Sabbath's Paranoid) as today's 'punk', but undoubtedly superior in most respects. So that's pretty much the point I was trying to get across.

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Cafe80s on 05/25/06 at 10:29 am


Perhaps my assertion that Rock 'n' Roll lacked melody was a bit pre-mature. I was going by the fact it tended to rely more on a beat (e.g. Chuck Berry, even early Elvis, Little Richard, Eric and the Dominoes). My personal experience was that Chuck Berry's early stuff wasn't as melodic in a bubble-gum way as Nu-metal and pop punk/emo (think of 'All American Rejects, Good Charlotte.etc). Of course not knowing the specifics about chords.etc, I go by what I think, and from what I hear alot of older music is not as recogniseably melodic (think Sabbath's Paranoid) as today's 'punk', but undoubtedly superior in most respects. So that's pretty much the point I was trying to get across.



okie dokie that sounds about right

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Apricot on 05/25/06 at 2:48 pm

[quote author=

Subject: Re: Today's music lacks melody? I disagree...

Written By: Trimac20 on 05/26/06 at 3:45 am


The "best" from back then wasn't exactly great either.. it just had a lot of appeal. The Beatles were okay, but not worthy of their constant praising. Today's mainstream doesn't quite meet up to old mainstream, but that's because fashion has crept it's way into music.

And also, claiming that today's music doesn't match up is really a matter of taste. Some people would argue that today's music is a lot better, others would argue it's worse. It's all tastes, and no taste is superior or inferior.


I think some 90s/current so called 'alternative' stuff like Radiohead's 'O.K. Computer', 'Nevermind' by Nirvana, 'Would' by Alice in Chains, 'Definitely Maybe' by Oasis are certainly up there with the Beatles.etc. Of the 00s, I think the Stroke's 'Is This It' is has a worthy place in the Rock'n'Roll hall of fame.

One album which can never get too much praise is the Beach Boy's 'Pet Sounds' - listening for the first time is like getting a glimpse of musical Nirvana...

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