Thursday, November 3, 2011

Sorry. Your Favourite Musical Artist Is Not Very Good.

It speaks to a larger sadness when your online friends attempt to stir and encourage your occasional bouts of indignant rage about silly things like music. This blog has always attempted to lean to the side of promoting good music rather than taking shots at bad music. It appears we might be looking past that a little this time around.

With age comes some level of maturity in these matters. I used to enjoy a heated music debate that opened the door to tell someone they were silly for enjoying Celine. These days, it's more a case of whatever makes you happy. To each their own. The artistic and creative merits of music should speak for themselves and be obvious to everyone. Unfortunately, it doesn't work that way though does it?

For instance, Justin Bieber is not the problem, but Daughtry probably is. Bieber's a kid with shitty music and bad lyrics. I would expect no less. If you're under 20 years old, knock yourself out. If you're over 20 and you like Bieber, jesus christ, come on! Daughtry on the other hand are grown ass men with shitty music and terrible lyrics. We should expect more from them and their fans, and they should know better.

The point in this exercise is not to just take random shots at crappy mainstream artists. There is the classic saying about being part of the solution rather than the problem. Rattled By The Rush wants to be part of the solution. Many music and film sites have a set-up where they suggest "If You Like  ____, then you will enjoy _____ ". That is the approach we will use to help right the wrongs. In the interest of space and comparable levels of crappyness, we will also bucket together some artists.  This may become a recurring blog feature, since there are a lot of shitty artists out there. Nonetheless, let's begin.

I had no idea who this was.  I don't watch the Idol or any of those silly shows. This is everything that is wrong with modern mainstream music. This video for example:

The closed eyes, then the open eyes gazing past the camera into whatever is past the camera, the crinkled brow, the faux impassioned nonsense. Big production distracts from lyrics. He isn't saying anything. Think about it. "It Feels Like Tonight" doesn't really mean anything. Seriously, what does that even mean? Having a douche bag band with all sorts of non-ironic head wear and haircuts also doesn't mean anything. The fedora guy, the wool cap guy, the mohawk guy, and the ill conceived facial hair artistry.  Having a big voice might mean you're talented and qualify for vocal gymnastic competitions. Sadly it doesn't make your songs less shitty or meaningless.

If you like clean, slick production, and big label type hooks with radio friendly esthetic, check out Delays. Huge falsetto with plenty of polish, but subtle vulnerability. Of course they're British.

Rhianna / Katie Perry / Ke$ha / Jennifer Lopez, Fergie etc.
It's not a pop music thing. Quite the contrary. It's a North American pop music thing. Even the most obnoxious music snob has room in their arsenal for full on bouncy urban radio type pop music. It just needs to be packaged in a healthy dose of clever. That's where Euro female popsters win. Many get a bit of coverage on this side of the globe, but never end up buried in cash the same way as the far less talented noted products.  Putting a dollar sign in your name doesn't make you look clever or successful. It makes it look like you can't fucking spell. Spend some time (or more time) with Robyn, Lykke Li, Goldfrapp, or Annie.

Maroon 5
45 million people have watched "Moves Like Jagger" on YouTube. Shockingly I have been able to avoid having to bear witness visually or sonically to this foolishness. The thing is when you smell and then see poo, it really becomes unnecessary to expand on your curiosity and validate that what you see is in fact poo. I am at the point where I don't need to see or hear Maroon 5 to know they're douchey or offensive to my ears. We've all been force fed Maroon 5's poo for long enough now, that one more bad song and shameful video is not going to give you an insider's view. These guys get billed as being some sort of nouveau white boy soul funk hybrid. Soul speaks to depth of feeling. Marron 5's music has neither depth nor feeling. If it makes you want to dance like a washed up lead singer for a washed up blues based British invasion rock band, knock your self out. Maybe try Temper Trap instead

James Blunt
If you like this guy, you might be fucked. That is from the standpoint, that I can't really help. I cannot come up with an artist with actual good songs that would sub in nicely for this insincere embarrassing trite crap. You might still like good music in spite of Blunt, but if you also like John Mayer, Gavin Degraw, Jason Mraz, or Enrique Igleasis (I hope that's spelled wrong - I'm not checking it because I don't want my Google tainted with his name on record as having been searched), then sadly there really might not be any hope for you at all. Maybe a psychological flooding exercise with some Slayer to remove all the bad songs form your subconscious. Extreme measures in the interest of a fresh start. You're welcome.