by Shelt Garner
Absolutely no one listens to me. But I do have an ear for music — and an obsessive personality — so I’m going to rant about this for a little bit until I get this out of my system.
Ok, so, here we are. We have suffered through about 15 years of Modern Adult Contemporary as absolutely dominating pop music. Rock music is dead. It’s relegated to a small corner of the musical world. No longer is rock pop music and pop music, rock. But we are overdue for a change.
We’re overdue for a “New Sound.”
Here’s how I would construct it.
First, you think up a way to make this type of song by The Talking Heads sound more modern.
Then, there are three songs on U2’s Achtung Baby to use as a frame of reference.
These songs are pretty much juiced up Adult Contemporary songs. They’re songs that kind of oldies (ugh) but still modern enough that they fit the conventions of modern music. Next, you throw in the Butch Vig sound that can be found in this song.
And then here’s the crucial aspect of this New Sound. What what I just let you listen to in your mind, draw out what is obviously a “New Sound” in this song to make an entire genre — Rona Rock.
I know that this “New Sound” I’m hearing is simply a producer referencing mid-80s rock. Ok, I get it. But the song does sound very modern to my ears. It’s like I hear something different. I hear potential. Go that way! I wouldn’t mind top 40 music sounding like warmed over Talking Heads. That would be pretty cool, in fact.
And, remember, if the history of pop music is any indication, once you get a New Sound, that changes the dynamic of things so much that some interesting things could happen, like, say….rock n roll? Maybe Rona Rock would be actual rock before it was all over with.
But that’s being delusional.
At best, we we’ll probably just simply Adult Contemporary with a little bit of mid-80s influence.