All music sucks

You've probably realized that most people you know have pretty astoundingly awful tastes in music. They listen to trite, trendy, popular bands whose main claim to fame is that their album covers feature male underwear models (with individually dyed hair roots) who can also, given sufficient training, lip sync their own music. Or they listen to classy low-key indie bands whose main feature is being exclusively bad enough to avoid having a large following (musical taste is nothing if not snobbery). Or--and I shudder to think this--they are of the opinion that what sounds like the last worldly petitions of a cat being sucked into a vacuum cleaner, if played loudly enough and with a good guitar solo, is pretty much the moral epitomization of acoustic refinement.

These people should be removed from the gene pool, I agree. But the root of the problem is ultimately more fundamental than that. In fact, the reason most people's taste in music sucks so horribly is fairly simple. These people like bands. And bands--all bands--suck.

You're probably surprised to hear this, but I doubt you've been completely ignorant of the fact. Most people realize that many of the bands they hear suck--just not all of them. Usually there are also at least a few bands for whom any given person will fail to realize this essential truth. However, that does nothing to contradict the simple fact that a general vote of the world's populace would be more than enough to relegate just about any band to the fully non-exclusive "Hall of Suck."

Even if bands did not suck, a more culturally advanced species would be at a loss to explain the idolatrous worship they receive. The only thing your favorite band has ever done for you is make your daily commute slightly more diversionary than it otherwise would have been. But compare your enthusiasm at seeing them to your enthusiasm at seeing your mom--the woman who gave you life. I think you'll find that your psychological sentiments are as absurdly disproportioned as a bulimic Barbie doll.

So why do people care so much about bands? Why not music company executives, radio DJs, or sound processing engineers?

I believe this is an instance of the "crack dealer effect." The perceived proximity of the agent to the transfer of the product determines the loyalty/devotion of the customer. One's drug habit may ultimately depend on the shrewd practices of some clever crimelords in South America, but it's the guy who eventually dilutes it and sells it to you at a few hundred percent margins whom the average crackhead winds up willing to take a bullet for.
(In the case of some of the boy bands that I've heard, perhaps this aberrant psychology might be more akin to "Stockholm's syndrome.")

This is why I'm proposing a government sanctioned "War on Suck" to wipe out the truly sucky music. Moderately sucky music would still be ok, kind of like cigarettes and alcohol. But anyone who listened to "Panic! At the disco" would be looking at a hefty fine and probable jail time.

Yes, it's definitely time to cleanup some of the riffraff in the soi-dissant music scene.


Hatless in Hattiesburg said...

are you sure that last adjective shouldn't be "soi-dissonant"?