The Death of Melody: video analysis inside

Discussion in 'The Sound Hound Lounge' started by tribalfusion, Sep 8, 2019.

  1. tribalfusion

    tribalfusion Member

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    I hope some of you find this interesting and thought-provoking.

    "This video explores the Death of Melody - a phenomenon observed in pop music, film music, and even classical music Examples range from Taylor Swift, Lady Gaga, One Direction, and Billie Eilish, to DJs, Remix culture, James MacMillan, Hans Zimmer, John Williams, and so on! Towards the end, we talk about musical hooks, and such, and how rap, hip-hop, and the likes have changed the way we think about melody."


     
  2. jackson

    jackson Member

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    Interesting. This is why some of us generally prefer older music.
     
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  3. twotone

    twotone Member

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    I watched it. It explains why newer music sounds 'dumbed down'.
     
  4. Suave Eddie

    Suave Eddie Member

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    Finally something that articulates exactly what I cannot stand regarding current pop music. What passes for song writing is abysmal. I've noticed this for several years now. Take a 3 or 4 note simple phrase and just repeat it endlessly and call it a song.
     
  5. Doomrider78

    Doomrider78 Member

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    I haven't watched the video yet (I'll watch it after the mountain bike World Cup XC racing finishes) but from your descriptions above, it pretty much sums up what I think of the state of the current crop of new (not NU-) metal bands: The one thing they seem to forget is to write a good, catchy riff. Even the heaviest of bands used to write a riff you could hum all day: Nowadays, its all hammering the low B on a 7-string, with world-ending levels of highly scooped gain.

    I genuinely think it's the main reason my the older bands i.e. Megadeth, Metallica, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden etc etc are still so popular: They know how to write melody into their riffs and song arrangements.
     
  6. 2HBStrat

    2HBStrat Member

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  7. 2HBStrat

    2HBStrat Member

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  8. tribalfusion

    tribalfusion Member

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    How about watching the video and trying to articulate a coherent response? Thanks in advance.
     
  9. blueworm

    blueworm Member

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    wow that's sad... RIP
     
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  10. 2HBStrat

    2HBStrat Member

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    I will, but it's like once a week there's a new thread, with a slightly different approach, on how new music bad old music good...it's predictable and, frankly, somewhat boring. Music isn't going to go backwards and the good old days of the hopped up blues rock of the late 60's early 70's isn't coming back...
     
  11. TCMx3

    TCMx3 Supporting Member

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    can we please not have the typical TGP conversation slamming modern music?

    already I see people having missed the point of the video (which I, surprisingly, liked). it was analogous to exploring black and white photography compared to color, but here people have decided instead to twist it to confirm their own biases.

    the video creator himself even said, explicitly, that he thought many of the modern songs (Bad Guy, the One Direction song, etc) were good songs, a point that appears too sophisticated perhaps? also ignoring that contemporary classical, which is the creator's principal interest, is used as an extreme example of quality without melody.

    if I have one criticism of the video, it's that it really only focuses on the most popular music, when we know that the relative importance of charting songs is on the downward swing, and there are plenty of quite popular artists not conforming to trend who while maybe not sharing the popularity of some examples given, are still moving a whole lot of units.
     
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  12. derekd

    derekd Member

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    The author immediately shows his bias by continually stating melody has gone out of fashion with variations of that theme. It is absolutely an expressive tool today, just not like he wants it. Melody doesn't need saving. As long as there are songs there will be melody.

    What he isn't saying is, all his examples have strong melodies they just don't have much melodic range. That is definitely melody, it is simply minimalism at work. He's cherry-picking pop music and some movie soundtracks. I would agree melodic minimalism is very popular today. I'm not much of a fan but it is a legitimate use of melody.

    There is plenty of music out there stretching melody in lots of direction. He chose not to use any of those examples. Instead, he uses classic rock examples to show wider ranges of melody and how hooks began and how hooks have taken over. He could have easily talked about how Elvis, Chuck Berry, and the Beatles dumbed-down pop music harmonically compared to what came before them.

    I do think it is worth watching, I just disagree with his narrow-minded viewpoint.
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2019
  13. freedom's door

    freedom's door Member

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    Part of the continual dumbing down of everything for the smartphone addicted masses with no attention span past 10 seconds.
     
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  14. soundchaser59

    soundchaser59 Silver Supporting Member

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    maybe not during your life time.
     
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  15. TCMx3

    TCMx3 Supporting Member

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    Seven Last Words from the Cross is significantly more sophisticated music than what the vast majority of the classic rockers around here listen to but ok.
     
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  16. lp_bruce

    lp_bruce Member

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    I think he's cherry picking his examples to prove his point. There are certainly songs that feature melodies and a few of the songs he chose actually had a melody, albeit a very simple one.
     
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  17. jackson

    jackson Member

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    The article does a good job of quantify it, or measuring it. They are just proving something that many of us already knew. I guess old people like melody and harmony.
     
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  18. jackson

    jackson Member

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    It's a value judgement. Today's pop emphasizes beats, tone colors, and hooks, as opposed to melody. Whether or not it's good, or bad, is up to the listener.
     
  19. derekd

    derekd Member

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    Agreed.

    One tune he chose, Poker Face (BB #1) by Lady Gaga is very monotone. Off her next record, Bad Romance (BB #2) uses a monotone verse juxtaposed against a very melodic chorus. Why did he choose the one and not the other?
     
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  20. lp_bruce

    lp_bruce Member

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    I think I know...
     
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