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HiyaLuv!
post Jan 26 2019, 01:47 AM
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I have spent the last couple of days listening to the best hits of 2012 and feck me, there is so much fire, passion, melody and energy going on. I absolutely adore songs like Sweet Nothing, Don't You Worry Child, Latch, I Cry, Va Va Voom, Million Voices, Goldie, Swimming Pools (Drank), Tidal Wave, Spectrum (Call My Name), Bonfire, Bangarang, R.I.P, Silhouettes etc etc. These are some of the most intoxicating bangers of all time. It's not as if I was even a spring chicken then as I was 29. I could go on. I am feeling increasingly disconnected from late 10s music and I really don't think it's because of my age.

Since streaming started to dictate the charts, it just seems like almost everything is a generic, lifeless, down-to-midtempo borefest, and it's not that easy to find hugely melodic and vibrant bangers outside of the Top 40 either. Tropical house and future bass annoyed me like hell, and hookless trap and identikit afro bashment streaming hits leave me feeling similarly cold. I know I am 36 but I thought I'd be alienated by something a bit faster, louder and more abrasive at this point. It seems like streaming has just encouraged the powers that be to commission easy uneventful, mumbly, humdrum and predictable Spotify-friendly background music with songs that generally sound the same and have no real bite. Plus Jess Glynne's "everywoman" M People b-sides. Can hugely euphoric bangers even be a thing in 2019? Logic suggests that it should be the kids that want everything to be a bit faster, angrier and impassioned as opposed to me. Thanks.

I liked it when Sweet But Psycho got to #1, obvs, and Calvin seems to be keeping the banger flag flying. Generally the Radio 1 hits I approve of end up stuck on the B and C-lists and don't make any real mark on the general public. You know something's gone wrong when you're cheering on landfill indie stereotypes Catfish and the Bottlemen for penetrating the Top 40.


This post has been edited by Hiyaluv: Jan 26 2019, 02:04 AM
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Dobbo
post Jan 26 2019, 02:34 AM
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2012 also had a lot of crap tbf. And time passed is key, most things sound better after a few years and stand up well when put beside good memories from said period. I'm sure in 2026 there'll be a large contingent saying 2019 music was much better and so on. These things never change.
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Tangela
post Jan 26 2019, 02:54 AM
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I was having this discussion with my boyfriend tonight. When "Don't You Want Me" by The Human League came on, we were discussing how timeless it is and how crazy it is that it's almost 40 years on. Can't really think of any song from the past year that could be seen as a timeless classic like that one. "Sweet But Psycho" may be the fun pop injection we needed into the charts, but it's still nothing compared to the classics of yesteryear.

But again, I'm also aging a little now. The Radio 2 playlist is starting to interest me as much as the Radio 1 playlist usually would. The charts to me are full of crap. That never used to be the case. But also, it is miraculous how once streaming took over, my opinion of what 'popular music' is has shifted considerably.
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Eric_Blob
post Jan 26 2019, 03:03 AM
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I think a lot of the chart hits from 2012 were really, really awful to be honest (of course there were a lot of great ones though). There are up-beat songs with strong melodies like Unforgettable, Shape Of You, Cola, Mabel's new song, the new Gesafflestein/Weeknd song. I don't even know that many chart songs from the past few years (I was in prison for a while), so there's probably many more.

And I'm not sure why you mentioned Sweet But Psycho of all things? I listened to it and it's a mid-tempo song and the synths in it are quite subtle? I guess it does have a prominent melody though.


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N-S
post Jan 26 2019, 03:18 AM
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The answer to your question is: Both. The same is kind of happening to me where I'm baffled to what is nowadays considered popular music.
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Dircadirca
post Jan 26 2019, 04:15 AM
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There are a few factors that don't often get considered. For one, songs will generally sound better upon familiarity, so connecting with popular music is an investment of time that upon getting older you either won't have the time for, or the initial apathy will be difficult to convince yourself it's worth trying to overcome. Another is that popular music often blends into trendy styles of the time. If you grow up listening to top 40 music of the time, it'll shape your perception of what music is, even what music is supposed to be. This may be a certain production style, a certain chasteness, a certain strictness towards certain structural standards. Since popular music is, and always has been aimed towards the youth, every new year brings in people who have less attachment to the styles of old. This keeps music evolving ever so gradually as new concepts and ideas are occasionally introduced to varying levels of shock, before being normalised and then fading back out. I have never seen a new song enter the charts that sounds radically different to the norm (without just being a throwback) and not seen an avalanche of outrage from people whose foundations are shaken by it. I was out playing pool yesterday with MTV playing in the background with current hits. About 10 seconds into "Mo Bamba" and the person working there changed the channel over to R&B Fridays: the song is just too disruptive and weird to be ignored. And yet, on that R&B playlist, there were often songs that I can remember sparking similar outrage like "Like A G6" and "Watch Me (Whip / Nae Nae)". Everyone says 'yeah but those songs are fine, this new one is going too far', but that's completely mis-remembering the outrage that was sparked. I've lived through a good decade and a half of watching people get outraged at 'this ISN'T music anymore' that the only thing it tells me anymore is that the person has gotten older and their memory is extremely selective if they don't realise they're saying the same thing their elders said about their own era of music. The reality is just that songs like this get normalised over time, and detached from the pantomime of the current top 40 where every song you don't like is muscling away space from the songs you do like, it's surprising how enjoyable they can be in hindsight.

Additionally, I think most people don't realise just how much of their opinion on music is brought about by their own assumptions & bias. It pays to give hindsight a chance because most of the time, if before hearing a song, you think 'I will/won't like this song', that's what'll end up happening. It might surprise some people to know that I used to be a very close-minded rockist, and I was often just as hard on a lot of that scary music that rhymes with turban, with the exception of the occasional auteur whose music was generally accepted by people like me (Eminem, Lupe, Kanye), but even then, they'd never be on the top tier to me because their music was, through its very style, at odds with what I thought the best music was. Instead of having my opinion built by top 40 of my time, it was built by rock & roll canon, which was (and still is) very white and male. It wasn't until I was bridged along the way by pop-leaning artists (Sia, Kimbra, Owl Eyes) and hip-hop leaning artists (A Tribe Called Quest, The Weeknd) that my opinions started to shift and music which I saw as the absolute worst managed to endear to me.

It also matters a lot the company you keep. Those pre-conceptions I mentioned are often formed by the people around you. You get a hivemind where the most outspoken people dictate opinion by outweighing anything dissenting. If there is an unpopular opinion, it possibly comes from 'that one person' whose opinion makes no sense to you and thus you disregard. It can be hard to come around on something unless a trusted voice speaks in favour of it. With that I think it can be even more important to read critical appraisal for something you don't understand the appeal of. You might initially think 'yeah, whatever' but if you expose yourself to enough, you might be able to empathise. Even if it's not really for you, you'll at least understand what people are getting out of it, and that might benefit in the future, once you get more used to the new normal.

(Also personally as far as top 40 stuff goes, the majority is very 5-6/10 with the occasional nuggets, and that's been the case pretty much forever. It's surprising how often I see people say the charts are rubbish now but then they still like considerably more of it than me).
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post Jan 26 2019, 06:47 AM
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QUOTE(Queen Rosemary @ Jan 26 2019, 02:54 AM) *
I was having this discussion with my boyfriend tonight. When "Don't You Want Me" by The Human League came on, we were discussing how timeless it is and how crazy it is that it's almost 40 years on. Can't really think of any song from the past year that could be seen as a timeless classic like that one.


Really? To me it sounds very dated indeed!
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💀 Mori 💀
post Jan 26 2019, 07:07 AM
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QUOTE(Dircadirca @ Jan 26 2019, 04:15 AM) *
There are a few factors that don't often get considered. For one, songs will generally sound better upon familiarity, so connecting with popular music is an investment of time that upon getting older you either won't have the time for, or the initial apathy will be difficult to convince yourself it's worth trying to overcome. Another is that popular music often blends into trendy styles of the time. If you grow up listening to top 40 music of the time, it'll shape your perception of what music is, even what music is supposed to be. This may be a certain production style, a certain chasteness, a certain strictness towards certain structural standards. Since popular music is, and always has been aimed towards the youth, every new year brings in people who have less attachment to the styles of old. This keeps music evolving ever so gradually as new concepts and ideas are occasionally introduced to varying levels of shock, before being normalised and then fading back out. I have never seen a new song enter the charts that sounds radically different to the norm (without just being a throwback) and not seen an avalanche of outrage from people whose foundations are shaken by it. I was out playing pool yesterday with MTV playing in the background with current hits. About 10 seconds into "Mo Bamba" and the person working there changed the channel over to R&B Fridays: the song is just too disruptive and weird to be ignored. And yet, on that R&B playlist, there were often songs that I can remember sparking similar outrage like "Like A G6" and "Watch Me (Whip / Nae Nae)". Everyone says 'yeah but those songs are fine, this new one is going too far', but that's completely mis-remembering the outrage that was sparked. I've lived through a good decade and a half of watching people get outraged at 'this ISN'T music anymore' that the only thing it tells me anymore is that the person has gotten older and their memory is extremely selective if they don't realise they're saying the same thing their elders said about their own era of music. The reality is just that songs like this get normalised over time, and detached from the pantomime of the current top 40 where every song you don't like is muscling away space from the songs you do like, it's surprising how enjoyable they can be in hindsight.


Very much agreed. I came of age in the mid-late 00s (as did many of us), and what I consider the best pop tends to either have that 00s style that I'm constantly searching for or something that I can recognise from an older era that music I grew up listening to took inspiration from. The style I gravitated towards particularly from that era was loud and brash but melodic music, whatever the genre, and that defined what I search for.

And while at times I have the time to catch up with the chart, I haven't felt it necessary to do so because I am so naturally convinced that the vast majority of what I find will be what is, to my mind, slow, boring music that has little melody and just makes annoying noises, and I have so many songs that I like already that something that isn't remarkable I'll just file it 'not worth my time'. And it will continue to be like that unless I sit down with some songs and actually listen to them. But popular music has moved far away from what I want it to be that just trying to catch up would not be a pleasant experience.

So I know what you're saying is completely correct, and I also know that I'm going to continue to indulge in my biases as now I'm older I also see music as a complementary style of entertainment and not something I often listen to just to listen to, so I don't need as much of it.
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Dircadirca
post Jan 26 2019, 07:34 AM
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QUOTE(Iz~ @ Jan 26 2019, 03:07 PM) *
So I know what you're saying is completely correct, and I also know that I'm going to continue to indulge in my biases as now I'm older I also see music as a complementary style of entertainment and not something I often listen to just to listen to, so I don't need as much of it.

Yeah, and there's nothing wrong with that at all! I also know that personally as far as new music I listen to, country & metal tends to get the shaft just because while I'm sure there's no shortage of it that I would like, it's a tougher investment compared to other music I like which more naturally just falls into my lap (and as this makes them a rarity, it's harder to just step into it naturally). This doesn't mean I dislike the genres at all, just that we only have so many hours in a day to indulge in ALL media, so I'm content with the fact I'll never be able to experience every thing that I would like.
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post Jan 26 2019, 07:50 AM
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This might answer some questions:

-A new survey from Deezer suggests we stop listening to new music at age 30.
-The results put this down to a busy life.
-But there could be other reasons, like the fact we don't soak up new music in the same way anymore.
-For example, between 12 and 22 our brains go through a lot of changes and we're more receptive to the songs we hear.
-Whatever the reason, our brains like nostalgic music, and there's no shame in indulging them.

https://nordic.businessinsider.com/why-we-s...6?r=US&IR=T

Of course "we" here is not ALL OF US (I am very much listening to new music, in fact maybe 80% what I listen to is new)


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T Boy
post Jan 26 2019, 10:46 AM
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QUOTE(Eric_Blob @ Jan 26 2019, 03:03 AM) *
I think a lot of the chart hits from 2012 were really, really awful to be honest (of course there were a lot of great ones though). There are up-beat songs with strong melodies like Unforgettable, Shape Of You, Cola, Mabel's new song, the new Gesafflestein/Weeknd song. I don't even know that many chart songs from the past few years (I was in prison for a while), so there's probably many more.

And I'm not sure why you mentioned Sweet But Psycho of all things? I listened to it and it's a mid-tempo song and the synths in it are quite subtle? I guess it does have a prominent melody though.


THIS IS NEWS. I wondered where youíd got to, what happened?

As for the thread, I think probably both. I turned 30 last year and I really do find very little time to invest in new music-I guess I feel I donít want to waste my time? The charts arenít for me anymore and I like what I like. Artists are still producing music I like but you wonít often see it in the charts.

The streaming era has made a lot of music fans quite lazy. Background music is what is flooding the charts. Iím guilty in years past of just having music on in the background too without really listening to it. However, I got a record player on my last birthday and have been collecting vinyl. Mostly stuff I have but some older records too. Itís really got me listening to music as a hobby again. There are clear reasons we go off popular music as we get older but you never have to stop enjoying music.
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post Jan 26 2019, 11:19 AM
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I definitely agree! It's why I feel disillusioned with a lot of current music.

I feel like tropical was popular around the time streaming boomed, and of course that led to everyone trying to create this specific sound with the aim of trying to get on to Spotify playlists - eventually descending into this reductive, plodding, basic mid-tempo Casio keyboard-lite quagmire that never seemed to end. It also wasn't helped by the Chainsmokers coming along and basically in tandem decimating the music scene with their nasty future-bass sound which the world and their dog spent a long time copying.

It's basically ruined a lot of artists' sense of being creative, exciting or daring. Look at all those dance producers who sold their soul to this future-bass thing in the end.

I hate the term "Spotify friendly" so much, it's a two word horror story.
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post Jan 26 2019, 11:47 AM
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QUOTE(N-S @ Jan 26 2019, 03:18 AM) *
The answer to your question is: Both. The same is kind of happening to me where I'm baffled to what is nowadays considered popular music.

I am the same. It could be my age to but I find most of the current music and possibly the artists too all very generic,very few or little stand out from the crowd these days. In 30 years time I see very little of the music from the last 3-5 been remembered as I think most of it is mostly forgettable.
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Chez Wombat
post Jan 26 2019, 12:24 PM
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It may be age or it may be that my tastes have gotten a bit less mainstream over time, but I certainly feel a lot of my favourites from this decade have been from the first half, but at the same time I also agree with what Dirca + Dobbo have said, I fully admit that I'm a bit biased as I was young and in Uni back at the turn of the decade and so even though there was some real shit in the charts back then, I hold most of it in rose tinted glasses due to the fact I was still very into music at the time and associated it with good memories. Granted, I first got into the charts in the mid-00s, so that was very much my golden era and I naturally can't get as used to new sounds as I can then. It's natural that you're likely to stick to a certain timeframe with music you enjoy. I've been despairing at a lack of variety outside of the pop-dance sound in the chart since around 2010 and I've come to accept it's probably not gonna change (except now there seems to be a lot more pop/hip hop + R'n'B hybrids which appeal to me even less).

One thing I think has majorly contributed to this though asides from the style of music in vogue just not really appealing to me is that streaming has just slowed the charts down so much and the alternative ACR has made it look very artificial and messy. It just seems to be less and less about the genuinely most popular songs and increasingly more manipulated and difficult to follow which puts me off.
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post Jan 26 2019, 12:30 PM
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It's difficult for any new artist to make innovative,original music as it's all be done before. The most popular acts from the 50s through to the 90s were constantly inventing new genres of music and taking advantage of ever changing studio technology. We have now reached a point of stagnation and repitition. I don't listen to most of the songs in the top 40 and anything I do hear from it is dreadful but it doesn't really matter,there's still a fair amount of good new music to be found on Spotify in the genres of music I like and also from the various song contests I take part in on Buzzjack.

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post Jan 26 2019, 01:22 PM
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I think age definitely has something to do with how you view music. I grew up listening to music and the charts in the 1970s and 1980s so naturally I think the music from back then sounds like pure gold. I'm sure there are many teens today who think current music is brilliant but I find the charts to be bland because most of the tracks in the charts sound the same! There seems to be little variety.

Another thing: I can barely remember most of the chart hits from this decade. I'm sure if I heard them I would recognise them but there are many number 1s that I can't remember by just looking at the title. Yet I've just looked at the chart from this week in 1979 and I recognise nearly every single in the top 75 from just the title alone.

https://www.officialcharts.com/charts/singl.../19790121/7501/

And what a brilliant number 1 we had this week in 1979... a brilliant top 3 in fact.

The Top Of The Pops edition from the following week (I can't find the one for 25/01/79) is at https://archive.org/details/BBC_Top_of_the_Pops_1979_02_01 for anyone who wants to hear some of the songs in the chart from back then. The performance by Two Man Sound of the long forgotten single 'Que Tal America' (at 20 minutes in) is hilarious largely because the bongo player is crackers. The lead singer is standing on one leg only as well. Awful song though.


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post Jan 26 2019, 02:47 PM
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its a bit of both... music quality and originality has regressed since the 80s and 90s, and even the 2000s.. there are some good music released but its mostly rehashes of old songs... if u look at the top 40 now and the top 40 from 10,20 or 30 years ago uíll notice that big gap between the old songs and the new ones...
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post Jan 26 2019, 03:35 PM
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My interest in the charts has declined significantly since the introduction of streaming. I no longer listen to the charts show. I find the charts too slow moving and cluttered with the same usual suspects. There are lots of great songs which donít even reach the T40 but are far better tracks. Streaming makes it much harder for new acts to break into the market and older artists are more disadvantaged as most people streaming tend to be younger. I generally feel there is less good music making it into the charts and this will probably continue unless the charts company revamp the rules on streaming.
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post Jan 26 2019, 03:57 PM
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I just took a look at the singles chart 20 yrs ago and dear god half of the songs seems awful now, I mean B*Witched, Terrorvision, TQ, 911 and Gay Dad! What a nightmare biggrin.gif

I was 16 back then.


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Steve201
post Jan 26 2019, 07:51 PM
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QUOTE(Robbie @ Jan 26 2019, 01:22 PM) *
I think age definitely has something to do with how you view music. I grew up listening to music and the charts in the 1970s and 1980s so naturally I think the music from back then sounds like pure gold. I'm sure there are many teens today who think current music is brilliant but I find the charts to be bland because most of the tracks in the charts sound the same! There seems to be little variety.

Another thing: I can barely remember most of the chart hits from this decade. I'm sure if I heard them I would recognise them but there are many number 1s that I can't remember by just looking at the title. Yet I've just looked at the chart from this week in 1979 and I recognise nearly every single in the top 75 from just the title alone.

https://www.officialcharts.com/charts/singl.../19790121/7501/

And what a brilliant number 1 we had this week in 1979... a brilliant top 3 in fact.

The Top Of The Pops edition from the following week (I can't find the one for 25/01/79) is at https://archive.org/details/BBC_Top_of_the_Pops_1979_02_01 for anyone who wants to hear some of the songs in the chart from back then. The performance by Two Man Sound of the long forgotten single 'Que Tal America' (at 20 minutes in) is hilarious largely because the bongo player is crackers. The lead singer is standing on one leg only as well. Awful song though.


What a fantastic run of no1s from then too Robbie - Xmas no1 Boney M/YMCA and then Hit Me With Your Rythmstick, one of the biggest hits of the year!!

Also a NE at 6 for Blondie wasn't half bad either!!
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