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The Broken Music Scene

Trends come and go. I know that may seem obvious, but it appears not everyone is getting the ‘and go’ part. With most genre originators moving on to greener pastures (or dissolving completely), labels seem to be clutching to the past as they search for their replacements. Pop punk and hardcore ran their course and those artists have moved on. So why does it look like labels are snatching up pop punk bands like its 1999?

Band X sells alot of records. Band Y sounds almost identical to Band X, therefore, Band Y should sell. Interesting logic, and actually that would probably be a decent plan if it weren’t for Bands A through W, who Band X ripped off. How many copies of the same record can people really be expected to own? Unfortunately for the labels, they’re left with little choice. Anyone who takes a gander at the endless supply of mediocre music on MySpace can tell you- that’s all there is. Band after band emulating their heroes rather than just appreciating them. You really can’t blame anyone but the bands. They own the records they’re copying, so of course they know what they are doing isn’t original. What baffles me is that these bands know they aren’t original. They know they are treading well-worn territory. They know that the artists they look up to so much have even changed their sound to try and escape the clone army and the supersaturation of the genre they helped create. These kids must know that they bring practically nothing to the table, and yet they still have the nerve to send out demos.

Of course, I understand wanting to chase the rockstar dream, but since when is it more gratifying to ‘make it’ as a completely unoriginal joke of a band instead of an innovator that carves out their own place in the history books? Perhaps we’ve made it look too easy. Perhaps the music industry being shrouded in secrecy was a good thing. Perhaps people should stop feeling bad for telling someone they suck and should get out of this business. Simon Cowell is onto something. Pull no punches and leave no delusions. Either they have it or they don’t and 99% of them don’t.

AJ, KOAR

New Found Pop Punk 2006 – Outdated.
Believe it or not we still get a handful of records created by 18 year olds who are still listening to New Found Glory and Blink 182. Guess what, New Found Glory went emo and Blink 182 broke up. THEY aren’t even into the music these kids are copying. Green Day is the premier punk band, the songs are far superior to those in that genre. It’s amazing that not one out of thousands of punk bands can pull it off like Green Day; It’s like Abraham going back to GOD claiming he couldn’t find one righteous person, hence destroy the City. Unless you can say with a straight face that you’re better than Green Day, don’t bother sending out kits.

Hardcore 2006 – Rebelling Against Nothing.
Even the scenester kids claim hardcore is dead. Don’t invest into hardcore, a dying genre that never even deserved attention. Have you attended a hardcore show recently? It looks more like ‘fight club’ than an ‘event’. Hardcore has become nothing more than a soundtrack for an ass beating. This is why the Ozzfest has been crumbling with poor ticket sales. These bands are dissolving left and right, or completely abandoning their ‘hardcore’ following, ala Avenged Sevenfold. We don’t need more bands in this genre churning out the same cookie monster vocals and lame guitar riffs. Do yourself a favor and sit on the side of the stage at Ozzfest and watch these ‘calculated cloned’ bands perform. These guys aren’t ‘rock stars’; they are dysfunctional kids getting high on crack. For goodness sakes, rebellion is all about originality. Today’s hardcore bands are sheep, certainly not goats with horns.

Folk, Indie, Starbucks and the Good Ol’ Acoustic Guitar.
You can thank Jewel and Sarah McLaughlin for inspiring every little girl to pick up a guitar and strum a couple of chords that put you to sleep. Don’t get me wrong, Jewel, Sarah, and Tori had their moments but their disciples failed. Myspace and the net are filled with acoustic coffee house females that still think the Lilith days are hip. Guess what, it’s not. People are beyond personal embellished dishonest diary notes accompanied with choruses that would people to sleep after drinking 2 shots of expresso. Again, think of something of original and help the industry. Don’t believe your own hype.

Put Down The Eyeliner.
What kind of a rock star whores himself for gap campaign and sticks up his thumb? This isn’t dangerous, this is Disney Land. Where do we start here? Rock is supposed to be dangerous, dark, and original. Nothing dangerous about today’s rock bands. In fact, the rap artists are bigger rock stars even though their gimmick is drying up. After listening to the unsigned and the more well known rock bands I realized that the inspiration level is dried up as the California desert.

The Suit, The Tie, The Stripes and the Monkey
Remember when America was helplessly attacked by the artificial demand from the Hives, the Vines, the Arctic Monkeys and the White Stripes? It’s over and you knew it was coming. When you hear something great, you know it, and these bands weren’t even ‘good’. The garage rock revival has come to an end.

Got Inspiration? Try

  • AFI – Decemberunderground
  • James Blunt – Back to Bedlam
  • Blue October- Foiled
  • Mute Math
  • Cold Play – X & y, Parachutes
  • Baumer- Come On, Feel It
  • the new GNR single
     

To say music is struggling to reinvent itself is an understatement…

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Some people go to extremes of volume, vision and hype to attract attention to themselves while others are happy to simply do what they do and rely on building a reputation by the responses of those around them. Such is the case with Sydney singer songwriter Lior. Lior’s sound is a rootsy mix of styles that always harks back to the lyric and melody. In early 2005, Lior released his critically acclaimed debut album ‘Autumn Flow’. The album was one of the year’s most successful independent releases, and Lior has since become one of the few Australian independent artists to have a debut Gold Album. Autumn Flow is to be released internationally starting in the UK.  Lior will be touring the UK, Europe, and the states in aid of Autumn Flows release. Check out the tracks This Old Love and Daniel.  For more information email Nicholas Boshier.  

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MySpace who have come under fire as “copyright infringers” will use “audio fingerprinting” technology to block users from uploading copyright music to the social networking site.

“MySpace is staunchly committed to protecting artists’ rights, whether those artists are on major labels or are independent acts,” said Chris DeWolfe, MySpace chief executive and co-founder.

The company said users who repeatedly attempt to upload copyright music files will be permanently barred from the site.

Online sites such as MySpace and YouTube have come under fire from major record labels who have sued in some cases to prevent copyright music from being included as the soundtrack to a user-generated content.

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Less than 3% of all new artists actually get to gold or platinum status. This article is for the other 97% + of all artists out there…

Whether your band is #1 on the alternative radio charts or your album just debuted in the top 24 on the top 200 soundscan chart or you just got your first support slot on a nationwide tour with the hot band of the moment or maybe your band is working hard for the break like the most of the bands out there living the vision and bleeding for the passion – one things still remains common to all bands at all levels – to be truly successful as a touring band, you have to be focused on selling concert tickets and t shirts.

In an ever so competitive market where records sales and profit margins are shrinking and artist development is of the past, bands today need to be more self-reliant now then ever. One of the few areas where a band still can maintain its creative control is merchandise. Hitting the road to tour so kids from city to city can be a part of your lifestyle is a major part of the business model in creating that “break�. As equally important as the music you play and how you play, is what kind of merchandise you offer at your shows and on your website. It is a priceless promotional value of when a fan buys your band’s Tshirt and wears it to school the next day.

Bands today need the knowledge of how to properly manage and develop the merchandise line. In today’s market, you don’t have to have a retail deal to turn your brand’s logo into profits. Merchandise income when managed correctly enables bands to see their visions grow at a time when other avenues of the music business seem to be shrinking. In lieu, bands should focus on the business module of merchandise early in their career and find new and creative ways to self promote.

The age of the internet shows no boundaries, no limitations; it is the entrepreneur’s ultimate canvas. The internet has become a 24 hour 7 days a week 365 days a year gateway to your every wish. The internet can be your music, video and merchandise distributor. If this all sounds a bit overwhelming and need to tools for success, here is a company that helps bands get off their feet and get affordable merchandise so that bands can start their own music career… www.sicscreenprints.com

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Check out new music from unsigned NYC Blacklist.
The track Language of the Living Dead captures the dark NYC east village post punk vibe. For more information contact the band.
Next Show:
November 3rd – Sesac/CMJ day party @ The Delancey

 

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