Views on the Current State of Music

Music has been on my mind recently, given the fact that 12 year olds are getting sued by the RIAA and CD sales (or lack thereof) are news items. Here's where my thoughts have been.

While I like pretty much every style of music there is, I tend to gravitate towards progressive rock. Being a musician, I usually hear things in music that other listeners don't pick up. (Note: that doesn't mean that my opinion of an artist carries more weight than anyone else; it just means that I know what it takes for a guitarist or a drummer to pull of the fills and solos that they're playing in a song.) That's why I love bands like Rush, Dream Theater, and King's X, just to name a few. Not only are they talented, they can also write music that's appealing.

However, in the last year or so, my CD purchasing has pretty much slowed to a trickle. Simply stated, there really isn't much out there anymore that has grabbed my attention enough to buy it. Furthermore, the recent output from some bands that I've been a long-time fan of have been lukewarm at best, like Queensryche's "Tribe" and Spock's Beard's "Feel Euphoria". Queensryche really hasn't made a good CD since "Promised Land" and the Beard's last effort was just flat (having Neal Morse leave the band seemed to take a lot out of them from a songwriting standpoint). That's not to say the musicians in these bands aren't talented, nor am I saying that everything out there sucks right now. But the general state of music doesn't seem to be all that exciting to me anymore. I'm finding labels and bands that seem to be creating good music; they're just hard to find.

All is not lost, though. The Office of Strategic Influence CD is really hot, and Neal Morse is coming out with a 2 CD set called "Testimony". Rush is also coming out with "Rush in Rio" - a 2 DVD, 3 CD live set packed full of cool stuff this fall. And some recent Internet searching has turned up bands like Gordian Knot and Sprial Architect that seem right up my alley. Who knows. Maybe I'll finally start investing in some good recording equipment and start recording that damn 15-minute opus I wrote many moons ago...

* Posted at 09.10.2003 02:42:18 PM CST | Link *

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