Counter-culture Journals (文革)

Counter-culture Journals (文革)

Thursday, March 09, 2017


Finally someone agrees with me that he music scene really sucks. Here is evidence that the music scene for rock and other progressive styles have suffered since the end of the century. –SJ Otto

Let's look at some of the many ways the 2000s tanked musically. Sure, we can look on the sunny side and find the silver lining - but those linings came with some very dark clouds that washed out the musical landscape. Based on input from the Songfacts Community, here's a consensus of what happened in the 2000s music scene that rubbed us the wrong way.


The scourge of music technology! The most hated development in music since disco, Auto-Tune is that digital process which "corrects" pitch in vocal and instrumental performances. Now anybody can "sing"! Actually, your voice gets partially replaced with a robot voice. And it sounds that way. The more off-key you are, the more the robot voice takes over. You can literally record your dog, run it through Auto-Tune, and have a barking, singing robot. Of course, the technology will become more fine-tuned and less noticeable over the decades to come, so that we'll all eventually be listening to seemingly-perfect vocals with nothing but cold machinery behind them, and actual human singing will become a feat no more remarkable than playing a chess computer to a draw.

American Idol and Guitar Hero

Harmless, right? After all, it's just plain good fun, isn't it? Well, sort of. Winners of American Idol and players of the Guitar Hero / Rock Band series of video games start to think of themselves as musicians on the same level as professionals - and American Idol contestants get treated that way by the media, until the next season. Our beef is with the amateur-hour effect on music - and the fact that more bands are making their music "Guitar-Hero friendly," in the hopes of spreading their fame through the game. This causes the intricate solos to be replaced by Fisher-Price 1-2-3-4 riffs that a toddler could play.

Network Decay

Speaking of television, have you noticed that all TV channels start out with a specific category of content, and then they all gradually mush into the same pot of cognitively impaired "reality" shows? So, MTV and VH1, as you expand from one to two to five channels, could you, I dunno, show just one music video? Like, per year? Just humor us on this.

Music Genres We're Sick Of

Grunge is the cockroach of rock; it does not evolve because it accidentally found the perfect survival strategy the first time, so now it only needs to worry about reproducing itself as fast as possible. Emo, nu-metal, and sludge are all pretty widely hated and yet adored by a tiny cult. Good rap and hip-hop are awesome, but... is there any left? They're losing steam. Seriously! Go out and shock people again, rap and hip-hop! House/dance/techno is disappearing up its own derivative backside. And, oh, country, pop, and gospel get picked on, but no different from any other decade. Goth is still stuck in Hot Topic, and the more goths complain about Hot Topic, the more we see shopping there.


Everybody hates hipsters, which is silly, because hipsterdom is based on hating yourself. We should be caging them with Juggalos and making them fight to their death, except they'd both enjoy it too much (for opposite reasons, of course).

The Old Guys are Still Popular

Think about that. Do you know why Ozzy, Iron Maiden, AC/DC, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and The Cure are still touring and finding a new generation of fans? It's because we haven't found a replacement yet! This is painful and embarrassing. We're going to end up with Ozzy hobbling out onto the stage (The Canceled Retirement Tour 2033) with a walker and a colostomy bag going, "You haven't found anybody to fill my shoes yet? I'm bloody tired!

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