Modern pop music, explained

Owen "Big Bear" Benjamin once had a go at explaining the, uh, "appeal" - if you can call it that - of Coldplay and Pearl Jam, and I have to say, he did an excellent job:



Now, normally I do not and will not listen to Coldplay, under just about any circumstances, up to and including threat of torture. This is because I honestly believe that waterboarding is preferable to listening to the nasal whine of Chris Martin's voice.

If you do not believe me, you are certainly more than welcome to see for yourself how bad it is.

Here is the song that the Bear Clan Leader parodied in his stand-up sketch:



I never did understand the appeal of Coldplay. I can remember living in London back in 2005 and hanging out with this very pretty skinny half-French girl that I had known since back in high school at her apartment.

(Unfortunately this was back in my sad-sack Omega days when I didn't have the first clue how to get women to actually want me, so I hung out with her as "just a friend" - even though I was over at her apartment virtually every Friday, Saturday, and even Sunday night. Please feel free to write scathing comments about my truly appalling Betatude down below. The dumbass that I used to be certainly deserves it.)

She really liked Coldplay and insisted that their new song (back then), called "Clocks", was simply amazing. I remember hearing that introductory hook pretty much everywhere on television and radio at the time.

It has not really aged particularly well:



I tried to give Coldplay a fair listen. I really, really tried. But Owen Benjamin is right: they write THE SAME DAMN SONG for every single album.

I have written about how much pop music sucks before, at considerable length, so I will not go too far down that same rabbit hole again. I will simply state, for the record, that the reason why so many people love Coldplay, is because MOST PEOPLE ARE IDIOTS.

I do not write this just because I think that "most people are only tolerable well boiled and with lots of salt" - though, of course, I absolutely do. I write this because it is objectively true.

(And, of course, I write it because my taste in music is exquisite - as I demonstrate every Monday. You may now slavishly praise my brilliant song selection skills in the comments below.)

All you have to do is listen to a Coldplay song to realise that it's completely vapid, banal, and stupid.

And people still LIKE that shit.

Lose. Hope.

It is because most people are idiots that they go for catchy hooks and extremely simple, extremely stupid lyrics. The catchy hooks stimulate the brain's pleasure centres, while the stupid lyrics simply slip right past the brain's centres of higher reasoning and critical thinking and kind of wrap it up in a soft warm woolly blanket that makes the scary monsters and terrible burdens of the world seem like a bad dream.

If you don't believe me, watch what happens when Coldplay "performs" (read: blatantly lip-syncs) in front of an audience:



Look at the faces of the audience - mostly women, of course. They are enthralled. They don't have to think. They just have to let themselves be taken away by the, uh, "music".

Now, I'm not hating on Coldplay alone. Most pop music is like this, and it is horrible, which is why I do not listen to it. Pop music these days all sounds the same. It is all boring, banal, trivial, and REALLY GODDAMN LOUD.

In case you are wondering why the songs these days are so loud, so much so that you cannot separate out each melody or instrument, it's very simple. THEY NEED TO BE LOUD IN ORDER TO KEEP THE ATTENTION OF THE LISTENER. THIS IS BECAUSE POP MUSIC HAS NO REAL MUSICIANSHIP OR SKILL ASSOCIATED WITH IT ANYMORE, SO THE VOLUME HAS TO BE TURNED ALL THE WAY UP TO 11 IN ORDER TO STOP YOUR BRAIN FROM NOTICING THE SHEER STUPIDITY OF WHAT IT IS LISTENING TO.

Notice how you could not read through all of that? This is because your eyes become overwhelmed from the massive visual stimulation. Your ears, however, work a bit differently - and a "wall of sound" approach to music can actually work quite well at both soothing and numbing the brain.

More than a few metal bands are guilty of this problem of brain death through enstupidation, by the way. This is one reason why I have not really liked any AMARANTHE albums since their first two; they all sound pretty much identical and the lyrics and themes are all exactly the same on every single one, including their latest.

Even the holiest of holies, the legends among legends, the GREATEST BAND OF ALL TIME - also known as IRON MAIDEN - are guilty of making their lyrics repetitive and silly. "Dream of Mirrors", anyone? Or how about "For the Greater Good of God"? Even some of their best ever songs, such as "Brave New World" and "Blood Brothers", have this problem of highly repetitive and simple choruses (though they are ultimately redeemed by the lyrical brilliance of the verses and the sheer virtuosity of the musicianship).

Of course, the major difference with bands like IRON MAIDEN is that they actually write many truly spectacular, complex, difficult, and downright brilliant songs to offset the minor amounts of dreck. For instance, on the same albums as the aforementioned clunkers, you will also find the lyrically dense, complex, and phenomenally intelligent songs like "The Thin Line Between Love and Hate" and "These Colours Don't Run".

On top of that, most metal bands can actually, y'know, play their own damn instruments in a live setting.

Basically, pop music is designed and produced to make you stupid and compliant.

Oh, and it's not just pop music, either. I never did like grunge music very much, and with good reason. Listen to Pearl Jam's "Yellow Ledbetter", which the Big Bear referenced in his comedy sketch earlier:



I thought that Owen Benjamin was just hamming it up for laughs when he did his impression of Eddie Vedder. He was 100% accurate!!! Eddie Vedder does not speak English for more than twenty seconds, in total, in that entire song.

So listen up, kids: don't listen to modern pop music. It rapes your ears, reduces your IQ, and steals your lunch money. Grow up to be big strong scary awesome metalheads instead, like your uncle Didact.

And speaking of metal, I think it is high time that we listened to some, to wash away the foul taste of all of that horrid Coldplay nonsense:







Comments

  1. Sorry man, but I have to do it....
    https://youtu.be/yQIJuu3N5EY

    Each Musician displays his own art to it's finest. No lyrics, of course, and the song itself has been kicking around since the 30's, but it is the sort of classic that will NEVER die. Even with the celebrity cameos.

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    Replies
    1. I actually quite like bluegrass. I'm a huge fan of Steve Morse - I consider him to be the greatest guitarist around. And a big part of it is because of his skill at playing virtually any style or genre of music - including, of course, his ability to play bluegrass.

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  2. Didact,

    Pop music is Record company manufactured sound(tm). It"s not just designed to make you compliant but to brainwash you from ever knowing how much your musical traditions have been stolen from you. I've always listened to various genres out of curiosity and there are a lot of phenomonal genres and really interesting to listen to. As I get older, I pay more attention to the techniques and rhythmns. If there are lyrics I listen to the metres and try to guess the interval. Is it a sonnet, etc?
    Then when I listen to pop music at the shopping centre or on TV by accident, I'm struck at how shallow Radio company musik (tm) sounds
    xavier

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