"All Dance Music and Hip-Hop is Terrible"

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I just find dance music and hip-hop boring. How is that a problem?

GiantRaven:

Bocaj2000:

You are correct. Not all rap music is the same. I never claimed that it was. Great job shouting at a straw man.

I'll highlight my main point in case you missed it: rap needs more artistic exploration. Yes it has a lot, but it needs more. I find this point hard to argue against.

EDIT: Most of my experience in hip hop is from a personal love for avanthop and triphop, so I'm not forsaking the entire music genre, like you think. The quality of experimentation is great, but the relative quantity is frustratingly low. I hope that this helps you understand my bias.

So what, precisely, is the correct ratio of art to exploitation you require of a genre?

I never proposed a ratio and I refuse to give one. This is a silly question and I will not entertain it.

Bocaj2000:
I never proposed a ratio and I refuse to give one. This is a silly question and I will not entertain it.

Well that's just no fun whatsoever.

GamerAddict7796:

lacktheknack:

But seriously, there's always exceptions to everything. The above is the finest that techno has to offer, and if you think it's "just noise" at 55 seconds and on, you aren't human.

Alright, fine!

I'm not too proud to admit that as Techno goes that wasn't too bad!

ARE YA HAPPY NOW?!

YES. :D

But seriously. That was my Best Track of 2013, so I couldn't resist. :P

Sight Unseen:
Whoa hold your horses there! How did you get that impression? Just because I don't like or really respect YOUR preferred genre of music? Because I never said anything overtly negative about your music other than me saying that that kind of music doesn't evoke any kind of emotional response for me, which is really important for me because that's WHY I listen to music. I dont go to clubs. I don't dance. I don't give two shits if the song is good for dancing to. The most important part of songs for me is lyrics and club, rap, pop, and techno music tend to have shitty (if any) lyrics.

I have genuine interest in what you've said, so I'd like to spin off in that direction, if you don't mind.

You say that you like lyrics because they "evoke an emotional response", if I read you right. Are lyrics the only thing that do that? Some genres, like Ambient, function entirely off of the mood they set up and the emotional response they get from the listener.

<rhubarb> by Aphex Twin, for instance, uses only synth and flutes, but it has an apocalyptic feel and invariably puts me into a state of melancholy. Does that not happen with you without supporting lyrics?

lacktheknack:

Sight Unseen:
Whoa hold your horses there! How did you get that impression? Just because I don't like or really respect YOUR preferred genre of music? Because I never said anything overtly negative about your music other than me saying that that kind of music doesn't evoke any kind of emotional response for me, which is really important for me because that's WHY I listen to music. I dont go to clubs. I don't dance. I don't give two shits if the song is good for dancing to. The most important part of songs for me is lyrics and club, rap, pop, and techno music tend to have shitty (if any) lyrics.

I have genuine interest in what you've said, so I'd like to spin off in that direction, if you don't mind.

You say that you like lyrics because they "evoke an emotional response", if I read you right. Are lyrics the only thing that do that? Some genres, like Ambient, function entirely off of the mood they set up and the emotional response they get from the listener.

<rhubarb> by Aphex Twin, for instance, uses only synth and flutes, but it has an apocalyptic feel and invariably puts me into a state of melancholy. Does that not happen with you without supporting lyrics?

Its subjective and it might be only me that thinks this but for me the lyrics , more specifically the meaning behind the lyrics is what tends to evoke an emotional response in me. the accompaniment of instruments can certainly highlight and emphasize that emotion, but for me all of the songs that have evoked strong emotional resctions ( eg. Crying) have been in songs with lyrics. II've never had any really strong emotional response to instrumental music unless it is in like amovie or game and underscores a particularly powerful moment within the plot.

That said, I don't listen to nearly as much instrumental music as lyrical music, so it may just be my own lack of exposure to songs that would make me have that reaction .

It might also be worth noting that I am a VERY story focused gamer as well. I love games with great stories and if a game has a great story but meh mechanics I'll almost certainly like it more than a game with amazing mechanics but a shit story

Sight Unseen:
Its subjective and it might be only me that thinks this but for me the lyrics , more specifically the meaning behind the lyrics is what tends to evoke an emotional response in me. the accompaniment of instruments can certainly highlight and emphasize that emotion, but for me all of the songs that have evoked strong emotional resctions ( eg. Crying) have been in songs with lyrics. II've never had any really strong emotional response to instrumental music unless it is in like amovie or game and underscores a particularly powerful moment within the plot.

That said, I don't listen to nearly as much instrumental music as lyrical music, so it may just be my own lack of exposure to songs that would make me have that reaction .

It might also be worth noting that I am a VERY story focused gamer as well. I love games with great stories and if a game has a great story but meh mechanics I'll almost certainly like it more than a game with amazing mechanics but a shit story

Ah.

It's essentially opposite with me. Lyrics can ruin a song but rarely "make" the song, so I tend to prefer lyricless stuff. Heck, I just made a list of my top 5 songs, and only one of them had lyrics (at #5, no less). Probably the strongest emotional reaction I've had to a song was to "Disintegration Loop 1.1", which was literally an eight-second loop that played and degraded for an hour.

Also, mechanics trump story on my end, so clearly we're just opposites. :P

The electronic & dance music I have heard, I have not enjoyed. I'm sure there is actually a band or set of songs out there that I would enjoy but as an overall genre I find it irritating. I listened to some hip-hop when I was younger, particularly the early-ish stuff like Public Enemy, but I lost interest pretty quick. All of these genres, as well as pop, seem so oppressively pervasive in our culture and I'm just sick of it.

Sturgeon's Law, anyone? (90% of everything is crap.)

"but rap and hiphop are mostly just rich douchebags bragging about having lots of money, degrading women, and using illegal drugs."

And most Country is grown men whining about not being able to get over a girl, and most Metal is angry white boy music, and most Gospel is brainless religious chants.

See, I can be offensively generalizing too, since anyone with any familiarity with those genres can provide dozens of examples of me being wrong. The thing that most people are complaining about is MAINSTREAM rap and hiphop, not the entire genres.

Now I'll go ahead and say that I don't go out of my way to listen to too much rap or hiphop, simply because I don't like it musically. But that's my personal tastes.

No whole genre is completely devoid of value; even the borderline unlistenable Grindcore genre contains some interesting pieces of guitar work between the ear-damaging screaming and assaulting drumgun. I enjoy Eminem, Lupe Fiasco, Lil' Jon, Macklemore, and the guys who did Gas Pedal, because they're either having fun or telling me something I care about. I really wish people would stop generalizing everything possible into oblivion. It's just music people, there are billions of songs to listen to.

Edit: EDM is in much the same boat with me, I like Avicci and Swedish House Mafia for writing some songs that hit home with me personally, but otherwise I'm indifferent.

GiantRaven:

Nouw:
How about we have a discussion on genres that actually push the boundaries of what can be considered music?

When I was in Uni I really enjoyed looking at stuff by Ryoji Ikeda.

Moving back to the actual topic at hand: I was over this idea 10 years ago. I would've hoped the general collective of people could've done so too. There's a wealth of fantastic electronic music, rap and hip hop out there. There isn't a single genre of music that could be considered to consist solely of garbage.

Also, Supercommuter.

Holy crap you listen to Ryoji Ikeda too? I don't think I've ever run into another person who listens to him without actively seeking them out.

Edit: I should probably talk about the topic

People that say they don't like an entire genre of music probably haven't listened to much of it. Music today is incredibly varied so most genres will have something in them that will appeal to you. Although you might not find it if you just listen to the radio.

Has anyone mentioned Burial yet?

Laurel Halo combines imperfect vocals with precise electronic music to great effect

As do the Knife

As for hip-hop there is a lot of good stuff, my current favorite is probably Shabazz Palaces

Kanye is great as well, particularly Yeezus

Scrumpmonkey:
-music snip-

...and you just list a good chunk of artist and/or songs I have on my main Ipod Nano... What's next? You're going to also list artist like Deltron 3030, Doom, Grum, Mr. Scruff, or any song and/or artist that was featured in an Adult Swim bump and/or album??

But seriously, that list, alone, makes up a good chunk of my overall music playlist... But, then again, I'm probably too open-minded to notice any of the negative connotations that comes from any genre of music...

Sight Unseen:
snip

If you ever want to try out some emotionally powerful instrumental music I've got some recommendations. This kind of music won't be necessarily be immediately impactful, you've got to listen to it for a while before it sinks in. That said you don't necessarily have to give it your full attention, leave it on while working or reading something and let it wash over you. It should be somewhat loud though.

I'm also kinda throwing you directly into the deep end as far as electronic music goes, so if you want to stay away from this stuff I understand.

Lacktheknack suggested Disintegration Loop 1.1 which is a very good choice. The accompanying video pairs well but is very heavy.

Tim Hecker is also very good. Ravedeath 1972 is probably a good entry point.

Virgins is also very good but probably less accessible.

There is a sort of narrative to this kind of music. It's just not explicit.

1) Thou shalt not make terrible dubstep remixes. If you make a "dubstep remix" of a classic song, then I don't like you. I rarely like remixes in general, and dubstep remixes tend to just add a lot of noise to an otherwise good song. Unfortunately noise isn't the same as music. It's like when George Lucas added a ton of unnecessary CGI to the original Star Wars scenes, to the point where the entire screen would be blocked off. Does The Never Ending story really need a dubstep remix? Just make an original song using dubstep.

2) Thou shalt not sample music to cover up for a lack of artistic talent. You want to use a brief bit of music from another song, but ultimately make it your own and do something different? Fine, I guess. The problem is when the "sample" becomes the predominant, and often best, part of the song.

3) Thou shalt not use auto-tune unnecessarily, or to cover up bad singing. Auto-tune is not inherently bad. However, when it's being randomly shoe horned into everything, including COUNTRY music, which I already hate, the result is so bad that I break down laughing. Just because other people do this doesn't mean you have to. A lot of pop musicians will insert dubstep or auto-tune at the most awkward places, ruining a song.

How do you define real music though? It's too vague. If you mean "complex" or "high art" music, then no, dance music doesn't qualify. It's usually very simple with no real message so that most people can listen to it and enjoy it. Who wants to listen to Dust in the Wind at a club (there's probably a dubstep remix of that song now). If, however, by real music you mean "entertaining music" then yes, it qualifies. There's some really fun dubstep music out there to listen to.

I don't like generic music, radio pop is. So if it's not on the radio then you're safe. Oh if anyone wants good EDM, try Depeche Mode and Dragonette.

Nope, being an old and still on occasion raver/techno party scum I do not find all dance music worthless. That's not to say I like all dance music and there's plenty of electronic music that I like but wouldn't really classify as "dance". I also like a lot of early 90's rap/hip hop.

I may have occasionally seen such sentiments but I've usually been too busy not giving a shit about other peoples opinion on the matter to quantify it in any way.

Dismissing an entire category of something, 999 times out of 1000, is just plain stupid and probably a bad idea.

Evil Smurf:
I don't like generic music, radio pop is. So if it's not on the radio then you're safe. Oh if anyone wants good EDM, try Depeche Mode and Dragonette.

Dragonette was just playing on my pop radio station. What now?

Fox12:
2) Thou shalt not sample music to cover up for a lack of artistic talent. You want to use a brief bit of music from another song, but ultimately make it your own and do something different? Fine, I guess. The problem is when the "sample" becomes the predominant, and often best, part of the song.

I feel like I am required to mention Girl Talk here.

Trilligan:

Fox12:
2) Thou shalt not sample music to cover up for a lack of artistic talent. You want to use a brief bit of music from another song, but ultimately make it your own and do something different? Fine, I guess. The problem is when the "sample" becomes the predominant, and often best, part of the song.

I feel like I am required to mention Girl Talk here.

Oh, wow. I had to look the band up. There's a special place in Dante's hell for Girl Talk. Maybe they'll have to listen to their own music :P

lacktheknack:

Evil Smurf:
I don't like generic music, radio pop is. So if it's not on the radio then you're safe. Oh if anyone wants good EDM, try Depeche Mode and Dragonette.

Dragonette was just playing on my pop radio station. What now?

They accidentally played a good song :D

Fox12:

2) Thou shalt not sample music to cover up for a lack of artistic talent. You want to use a brief bit of music from another song, but ultimately make it your own and do something different? Fine, I guess. The problem is when the "sample" becomes the predominant, and often best, part of the song.

Lazy sampling is a thing in chart music a agree. But early sample based music was pretty excellent, the amount of samples used in early Public Enemy was staggering using many disparate parts of music to make a great sonic collage. It's the same with people like The Chemical Brothers who found they had a lack of good samples so simply decided to make their own.

An entire song can be make of samples and it still be creative. It's about using them to build something original, like taking the parts of an old building to make a new one.

V4Viewtiful:

In regards to free Jazz that style was created purposefully so know one would or could dance to it, they wanted their audience to sit down and listen.

Yeah, I realise that :) I was trying to highlight how some music is written to be simple and danceable because that's the way it's consumed, and some music isnt, because that's not the way it's consumed

I'll say what I always say in these discussions. Music is music, anyone can listen to it. Anyone can like it, anyone can spite it. But what ever kind it is, it is still music and it does not matter how it is made or how "lazy" or "generic" it is. As long as someone enjoys it truly, it is worth while.

To me genra is just an easy way for somebody to explain to a person the general type of music that they enjoy. It just can't explain every part of the music or how it differs from other types of music, it's just a lable. There are so many different kinds of hip-hop, there are so many different kinds of jazz. When somebody asks me what kind of music I listen to I usualy answere "That would take to long for me to say, why dont I just give you a sample and you can listen for yourself?".

Saying that all music in a genra is terrible can sort of be compared to saying "All short people are stupid." You just can't generalize that much.

So yes, I very much LOVE certain kinds of rap music.
Examples being; "Marcus D - Melancholy Hopeful" or "Nujabes - Luv(sic) ft. Shing02"
But then I don't enjoy certain other kinds of rap music.
Same thing with Hip-Hop and many other genras.

I like the music I like to listen to, no matter the lable.

(I highly reccomend anyone to the songs I presented, you might love it.)

There's terrible music in any genre and most of it ends up on the radio. Having said that, I DO actually listen to most music apart from hip-hop and electronic (with a few exceptions). Different genres put value in different aspects of music, for example rock 'n' roll puts more emphasis on drums and guitar while hip-hop puts more emphasis on the lyrics, while the music (or beat) takes a back seat. So is it any wonder rockers dislike hip-hop? I haven't actually talked to many hip-hoppers so I don't know if the feeling is mutual, but I would assume so. personally, I'm more rocker (or punker if you want to get specific) than anything else, but I don't have a problem with hip-hop in theory. It's just that so much of what i hear is terrible. If you put all of your eggs in the lyrics basket, then they'd better be impeccable, and far too often it doesn't rhyme or doesn't flow well at all, and then what's left to listen to? just some dude talking quickly about how he's a dick to women. Yes, I know I'm generalizing, there's probably an entire world of hiphop that's completely different and NO, this is not an invitation for you to show me. I know it's not all bad (I kinda like eminem on occasion) but at this point I just don't care about it anymore.
As for electronic... I liked some of it when I grew up, back when there was still some kind of meldoy and singing involved. Now whenever I go out it just sounds like someone started making a halfway decent song and then just stopped somewhere in the middle of the process.

Avaholic03:
I think the real root problem is that nobody can just dislike something. They have to rattle off some "reasons", however ignorant or misinformed, to justify their not liking something. There's nothing wrong with disliking certain styles of music if they don't sound good to you. No need to bash the entire genre though. I've never really found any hip hop that I like, and electronic "dance" music is extremely hit-or-miss for me. But I don't begrudge anyone else liking those styles more than I do. More power to you.

It's probably because you can't just not like something, most people want a reason as to why you don't find X band or song amazing and an inspiration to music's future or some crap like they do.

I find it uninteresting is not something people will let you get away with as they feel the need to defend what they like or helped them cope so you get into stupid arguments about originality, repetitiveness and stereotypes.

Well i suppose that a lot of people don't go outside of their musical comfort zone. I suppose the fact that metal is so well represented online might lead to a lot of this.

i do not like 99% of all the rap that is. i guess its because rap music is different from other music because if you like it you must agree to what the person is saying more so than usual. and i never do nor care. also, i find it very boring.

It's just a genre, and like every genre it has good and bad and the bad gets publicised due to ease.

Personally I don't care for genres, I just like the music I like for what it does and I like the variety everything has to offer.

From comedy, sadness, happiness, anger, feel good and everything else.

While the vast majority of people on the Escapist are well written, articulate people, the propensity that people have here to debate about debating becomes a great big distraction from the central issues.

Very few people here are into hip hop. No one has mentioned any of the historical names that one should think of. No one has yet posted a video that has any weight. I hope to bring something to the table that provokes thought.

Here is an orchestral tribute to the late great beat maker, James Yancey, also known as J-Dilla.

The original track that this orchestration was based on is here:

Yes, hip hop is dance music - it's Rythmic American Poetry (as KRS 1 once put it) and the subject matters range from how great one might be in their lyrical flow (which has a history that goes back beyond the 1970's in NYC) to social consciousness (doing better as a people or as a society) to absolutely nothing (Lil Wayne comes to mind). I tend to lean towards the sounds, rhythms and lyrical/rhythmic flows of the artists. I tend to avoid degrading lyrics, but I can appreciate gangsta rappers if they can tell a good story - storytelling is something that everyone on this site appreciates in their gaming, so I'm surprised that no one has mentioned Snoop Dog, or Nas, or anyone with any kind of storytelling ability. These days you can NOT look to pop culture for substance of any kind. I'm sorry to sound elitist, but it's the truth.

If you like Electronic Music, you should check out more J Dilla for sure, but also Flying Lotus (whose music is mostly without an MC) and some other people that I will suggest.

So many things come to mind as I read through many of the posts here. I will try to address what I can.
To those who wish to learn more about the actual music, please let me know and I will do the best that I can.

I can honestly say that I'm open to just about anything, but I also know how to listen to music critically. I also know how to play it because that's primarily how I pay my bills.

By the way, my favorite band is Meshuggah.

For those of you who are into electronic music, you must check out Flying Lotus. He is a gamer!

This is my favorite mix - it's not just about the beat, it's about the ambiance.

Like I said, he's a gamer.

To my statement about pop culture being shallow, I present this to you - Harry Connick Jr attempting to educate Jennifer Lopez about actual music. Notice her attitude.

They take less effort to produce then say learning instruments and coordinating. Also have a tendency to copy much of their material. I'm sorry, but I am fairly good at pattern recognition, and EDM seems to be following a blueprint. As for rap? It has been needing to die for about a decade now.

Modern dance and rap rely on ignorant novelty or paradoxical intention to be enjoyed.

I think the problem with those sorts of music isn't the fact that the genres are somehow inherently shit, just most of the people who make the music are shit. They're greedy scumbags doing nothing but spitting out generic music to get money from the masses.

For a long time I used think I hated rap. Then I heard some rap which had a message other than "money bitches guns" and I was surprised at how good it was.

It's all about the motivation behind the music, and sadly, within the world of hip hop and honestly, A LOT of popular music, there's no motivation behind it than greed. That quite frankly makes shitty music.

I'll be the first to admit the problem doesn't lie with the genre or the instruments used.

ALL IM SAYING IS.......you all hate hip hop, but you didnt have a problem with Mike Shinoda back in the day.
The hypocrisy in this thread is staggering, and not all 'metal' is pure, there are loads of bands who incorporate synths and other electronical pads and instruments into their tracks.

You cant have your cake and eat it.

I think a lot of you have a problem with whats ASSOCIATED with these genres rather then the music itself

Hip Hop: Arrogant, Obnoxious Wannabe thugs, who promote negative stereotypes

Electronic: Huge crowds of drug taking frat boys, overhyping the crap out of simple drops and basslines.

Get your mind correct.

And no one bothered to listen to anything I've posted. I guess I have to start my own thread.

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