TECHNOLOGY HAS TAKEN THE PLACE OF TALENT!!!

This video, via Spectre Sound Studios, captures an epic rant on the state of modern music production, arguing that the “talent enhancement that plagues modern music production doesn’t equal better music.” and, bottom line: TECHNOLOGY HAS TAKEN THE PLACE OF TALENT!!!

They add: #autotuneblows #beatdetectiveseucks

We’d counter that this attitude dismisses the work of innovators like Les Paul, the concept of the studio as a compositional tool and entire genres of music.

But check it out and let us know what you think! Has technology taken the place of talent? Or does technology just take the blame for bad music?

Leave a Reply

145 thoughts on “TECHNOLOGY HAS TAKEN THE PLACE OF TALENT!!!

  1. I mean, yea, this guy has a point but,… and I can’t believe I’m saying this… these are the times we live in. Ugh.

    This guy’s rant is so black & white. There are truly great composers and artists who use this technology and it is amazing. There are lame artists and crappy songwriters who HAVE to over-use the tools to sound sellable.

    This guy can blame the oil industry, blame the lame artists, blame the tools, blame the fans, etc. etc. But ultimately, it is the price of creative freedom.

    Thumb up 43
    1. Thes are doffinately the times we live in i agree , but thats not an excuse for over-using technology to cover up no talent . you either have it or you dont (.talent that is) . And yes it is the price we are paying for “available ” technology, its going to be used and abused by those that dont even deserve to use it . ( if you suck you dont sdeserve to use it )
      because these are the “times we live in ” we dont have to accept it.

      Like this comment?: Thumb up 7
  2. It always comes down to how you use it. I use Logic Pro to make my final recordings and have a rack of outboard analog channel strips, but some of my best ideas have come from using technology. The best camera is the camera you have on you, likewise I always have my iphone and my music apps with me for when insperation strikes in the park, on the bus, etc.

    Thumb up 17
  3. lol, he is pretty much right. my hereos are guys like hubert sumlin and waylon jennings they knew how to play and were bad mofos. I try not to work on crap anymore, but I have to pay the bills and keep projects moving, so sometimes I still engineer. everybody who is terrible thinks Im going to turn them into to freddy mercury or make their parts perfect with the touch of a button. Its pretty funny. back in the old days what we did was, after the crappy bass player leaves, I get out the bass and replay his parts. lol. Though, Im no fan of Britney, and I know she isnt a really strong singer, I doubt she is as bad as she sounds in that clip. Im guessing she is singing into Autotune in real time and not listening to the raw part, so its kind of different. still bad taste, though.

    Thumb up 9
  4. “Talent Enhancement” is a pretty broad term. I think it depends on what you do with it.
    Also, given the internet age we live in, there’s about a bajillion different music options at our fingertips. Instead of ranting aboit music we hate, why don’t we shut up and find music we like?

    Thumb up 18
  5. Don’t get me wrong……I like everything from Metallica to Adele. I have no particular love for Britany Spears or any current “pop” music. . However, this guy probably goes to all kinds of movies with over the top computer effects and enhancements and yet would never see the correlation because of his hated for anything other some obnoxious metal band. People have been trying to make recording artists sound better than they do since the beginning of recorded music. Whether it was placing and selecting a mic, doing a second take, overbubbing and resinging a part…….it’s all relative to what was possible. Unfortunately a lot is possible these days.

    Thumb up 15
  6. Additionally my two year old daughter plays on my iPad with me, using apps like Figure, Animoog, etc. She is yet to understand scales, timing, etc, but some of the ideas, melodies she creates are very different and exciting compared to what I am doing. This would never be possible without music technology. Technology has made music creation accessible to so many more people and that’s a good thing for music and the industry.

    Thumb up 28
  7. Technology has democratized the music making business. A good thing. It has created a level playing field with low bars to entry (pun intended). A good thing. Lame people can still express themselves creatively and be heard. A good thing. Looking for good music has become harder. A good thing. Because it makes the listener discern what he or she is listening to and wants to listen to, instead of being forced by a few overpaid media moguls. So, does he have a point? Nah, except for it being harder to find good music. Listeners arise! Listeners revolt!

    Thumb up 17
  8. Ha!

    I nodded along to everything this guy said, and then I realized – this guy would hate all my favorite music’

    It all comes down to how the technology is used. People used to rant about electric guitars, too!

    Get this guy a ‘Get off my lawn’ t-shirt!

    Thumb up 16
  9. Todd Rundgren once said, “It’s the content, stupid.”

    Ultimately, it is about the art. Whether an artists hears what she wants in her head and uses technology to manifest it, or tinkers with the tech and builds it incrementally, or uses tools to generate ideas and simply uses the “yum/yuck” response to filter the good from the bad– these are all valid processes that will yield interesting and artistically valid results.

    Talent doesn’t matter, but it doesn’t hurt. In a way, effort doesn’t matter either, but I enjoy music that takes effort- generally. The thing that always matters will keep thumping away in your chest whether you are an artist, or audience, until you take that dirt nap.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
  10. I agree with him for the most part, but I’ll say this: All these digital toys we have today are fantastic. They really do some cool stuff and, for the most part, I find them very useful. But the trick is not to *rely* on them. You can’t polish dung, and the ‘talent’ should not bring you dung to be polished. You can change timing, tone, pitch….etc., but the one thing we’ll never be able to fake is a *performance*. Get it right at source and it’ll always be right. 🙂

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 5
  11. An argument as old as mankind’s drive to create and invent new and interesting ways to sidestep his limitations. “Technology has taken the place of [insert word]” – not particularly original and somewhat Ironic, since It is technology that is allowing him to express his opinions to a mass audience without much in the way of training.

    Thumb up 6
  12. I think the mass democratisation of music brings many unfortunate penalties, sure – its a more level playing field now! Bad music has become so abundant that music in general is losing its value, good music is harder to find! People are spoilt for choice and so the shelf life of music is getting shorter…

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 3
  13. Music is mathematics. No-one can ever split them. It’s just that if it is made by ones own brain or machines.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  14. if you don’t like it don’t support it.
    and like go on soundcloud and get out there .
    there is much music to find and technology has given us many outlets.
    things move on and this dude needs to align himself with what he likes..
    bam , a lot of people hated the electric guitar when it came out. let us not forget

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 5
  15. You have to be able to look through the automation to see the talent and artistry within, if it exists at all. I think his real problem is he sees so much crap in the world. No reason to wage a war on the machines. Just call out the talentless ones that amount to nothing without their autopilot.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 3
  16. Hehe, that was quite entertaining, but utterly wrong on so many levels. Yes there is crap out there, but there has always been crap out there, just as there has always been great stuff too. That there is more of both is just the nature of the advancement of humanity. And who is to say what is crap and what isn’t, if one person likes something, even if they are the person who is making the music then, and this is really, really important – it’s valid! Whether anyone else calls it music or not is irrelevant. If you don’t like it, don’t whine and cry like a baby about it – or rant and rave like a loony – just go and find something you do like instead and leave those who do like it to enjoy it.

    I wonder what he thinks of the girl who sings naturally in auto tune? Apparently she does this because she has grown up only hearing this kind of music and that’s how she thought you had to sing!!

    If you haven’t heard her yet, she is worth checking out, even if only to marvel at just how crazy we humans really are; just search on the internet for “girl who sings in auto tune” – it’s quite bizarre!

    Having said all that I do take his point about working hard, and I promise myself right now, that I will work harder at making better music! I think this is the only decent take away from this 🙂

    Thumb up 10
    1. I completely agree with you: there have ALWAYS been terrible bands with gimmicks, no talent and over the top production. People just don’t remember them because they were terrible! Don’t blame the tools, man.

      Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
  17. this is exactly what ruins music for me lately.

    please just promote positivity and support the good things in music and ignore the bad and dont give it any attention or energy and people will think that dynamic range is the cool thing to do and its not just done by that antisocial engineer/musician who called them an uneducated twerp instead of explaining to them what it really is.

    rants are made by people who need self assurance and are insecure so they attack the easiest things to attack that everybody thinks is wrong we get it.

    over compression: bad
    autotune to substitute talent: bad
    time correction to substitute talent: bad

    check.

    we get it already.

    we have heard this a million times. now shut up and do something positive because nobody cares about anyones opinions anyways. because they dont waste their time to complain. ESPECIALLY in the sea of wasted space on youtube.

    Even if they’re doing these “bad” things, at least they’re doing ANYTHING productive with their time and not putting overly well lit and HD youtube rants that are 10 minutes long on the internet.

    they’re actually making music. more or less. but they’re still making music. they are putting effort towards something at all.

    stop complaining on the internet. it doesnt help anything, it is juvenile, and opinions just dont matter on here.

    i want to see the internet filled with the great parts of music or music at all, or new releases or whatever can further music at all.

    I DONT CARE ABOUT OPINIONS ANYMORE. SHOW ME WHAT IS GOOD IN MUSIC. THATS WHY I’M ON THE INTERNET, TO FURTHER MYSELF AS A MUSICIAN WITH A PASSION FOR MUSIC.

    come on. this is irresponsible and unprofessional.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
  18. oh yeah, if fans really deserve better, then people should just get it right in the first take if you’re following his theory.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 0
  19. We’re making art. It doesn’t matter how dexterous you are with a paintbrush, if you use a film camera or a digital camera or if you use photoshop or if you use autotune. If you come up with something that you like, maybe someone out there will like it too and that’s a great feeling. To sit there and yell into a camera about how I shouldn’t be allowed to do what I enjoy of share it with others because my guitar skills aren’t that great or I haven’t been singing my whole life is just rude. “The fans deserve better”? You mean the fans that steal everything off the internet and leave millions of truly talented artists penniless?

    I do agree with one thing though – If you are on stage playing a live show and are lipsyncing you are an a-hole.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
  20. Does makes straw man arguments like a mofo. He picks the easiest targets imaginable to make his point. I understand this is an opinion piece, but I’m not impressed. Lots of artists are making creative use of these modern tools which he is saying “are good for songwriting or making demos”. That’s just silliness

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 3
  21. We all like music for different reasons. Some people listen to it because they like to be impressed by the artist’s raw talent (guy in video). Some people listen to it because they really just enjoy how the songs sound regardless of how physically talented the musician was. And some people just listen to music because it’s better than silence and they really don’t care.

    I don’t really think it’s worth getting worked up over.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 2
  22. Sample replacing of drums has been going on for a long time. I heard about country producers doing it back in the early to mid 90’s. And many metal bands have used them to either replace or augment the natural drums, particularly in the live setting. I saw a lot of Alesis D4 modules when I was a live sound engineer.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  23. He forgets that his generation – in fact all generations – had “bad” music. I would even say that today we have the same amount of bad/good music as 60 years ago. But culturally we forget the crap and remember only the good stuff. That’s why 70s, 80s music radio stations play the same tunes over and over again. They’re not randomly sampling from all the records released in those decades.
    Also, as you get older your brain has a more difficult time handling dopamine, which is the reason why music gives you the chills and you swear that the bands X and Y changed your life when you discovered them as a teen. That’s why we tend to stick mostly with music we discovered during that time, trying to relieve the same “fix” we got from it then because as a 30-40 year old you won’t ever experience those kind of emotions when discovering new music.
    So those are the reasons why you think new music sucks. It’s not because of autotune or that technology has become more affordable or that today’s producers and artists are just lazy. It’s because you’re old and that we as a culture tend to forget that for instance the Renaissance wasn’t just the Ninja Turtles making awesome paintings and sculptures. There were lots of artists back then too but since they weren’t good we don’t remember them or preserve their stuff.

    Thumb up 5
    1. That’s really interesting, intuitively I knew I didn’t get the same exciting feeling with new music but until I read your post I didn’t know why!

      Thanks 🙂

      Like this comment?: Thumb up 2
  24. He has a BAD NEWS t-shirt! FYI the producers of Spinal Tap ripped off this Brit-spoof Bad News documentary concerning a lame Heavy Metal band that was made before Spinal Tap movie, Bad News is made up of the Comic Strip comedians and writers.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 0
  25. At every period of technological innovation, someone cries foul over the technology. It’s not pure, it’s not real, this is cheating. Nonsense. Crap music is crap music. How people get there doesn’t matter. Auto tune may correct the pitch, but it’s forgivable if it’s good music that comes out the other end. The stuff he’s talking about is crap either way. While there is something to be said for the journey when it comes to the experience of the musician themselves, it simply informs the creation of the music and adds soul. But if the music that comes out if something beautiful that you enjoy, how it was created counts for nothing. It is interesting, but it has no bearing on the quality of the music itself.

    One can make good music with a one stringed cigar box guitar or a studio full of equipment.

    One can make bad music with a one stringed cigar box guitar or a studio full of equipment.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
  26. Well this guy sure is a dinosaur… There is more fantastic music out there now than ever before! And even better that more talented people have a change to produce than ever before, which comes with more un-talented people also producing. He´s just too outdated to be able to find it outside of American Idol i guess. I´m pretty sure that people like him blasted the Monkeys and other teen-pop band back in the day, Milli Vanilli anyone? There have always been stupid pop bands and fantastic underground music, and there always will be.
    Bottom line for me is that this guy is an out of touch idiot…

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 2
  27. Listen up you bloody Melodyne wankers, delete your software and do some music instead, please!

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  28. What does it matter if technology *replaced* talent in a handful of artists anyway? I don’t like these kinds of artists most of the time anyway, doesn’t mean I despise autotune etc. I doubt the average metalhead enjoyed Britney Spears even before auto tune anyway.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 3
  29. Well… even if he might be right in some of what he’s saying, I’m thinking that maybe should have EDITED his video a bit more “human” like… there’s a cut between every single sentence he’s saying… but hey… maybe he’s not that “great” a video performer ;O)

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 3
  30. Stop living in the past dude.

    You are an ignorant rocker who still talks about BANDS! You dont need drums, guitars etc

    So last decade.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 3
  31. Okay, just to get this clear: He is ranting about misuse of all of these tools. And also the growing abundance of bad music, because more people now have the tools to make “music”. Doing a half assed job makes you music bad, period. If you do music as an art form, you should do your best, and test out your limits, that´s all art is about, not the fancy end result, it´s the way how to get to the end result. People make really good photographs, but in times of Snapchat and Instagram, the real masterpieces are drawn by hand. Of course, the pictures may are beautifull and artistic, but they´re bland and just not as impressive as a hand drawn fotorealistic picture of the human eye.

    It´s the same with music. Of course you can buy the loop packs and use preset sounds. Download a midifile, and the endresult may even sound good. But it´s not better or as good as a track with your own Patches, rhythms and samples, just because of the work you did. The endresult of creating a track with presets and loops may sound good, but artistically it is less worth.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 2
  32. This is just an old rocker with a rock mindset. Of course he is ranting,
    This is no different from people saying electronic music wasnt real music back in the 80s’. the complaint usually coming from Rock fans who loved “electric” guitars players who use, you guessed it electronic FX pedals. Maybe stop playing rock from the 1950’s to hair guitar bands of the 90’s and make some new sounds.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 2
  33. My assumption is that this is some sarcastic piece of stand up comedy routine, and guy is a comedian. But not very good at it, since he needed several takes to film it.

    SYNTHOPIA READERS DESERVE BETTER

    Thumb up 5
  34. Wayne’s World, 20 years later.
    Seriously, that’s all I could think about the entire video.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 3
  35. Isn’t all music tuning faked, apart from singing live vocals without mic? Guitars don’t grow on trees? Aren’t instruments technology made by humans to resonate some music tuning, like errr… autotune!? And isn’t the process further faked, wasn’t amps added to a guitar much later in history, isn’t a mic another faking tool added to the vocal. But then isn’t sound faked, it isn’t really vibrating energy – but a translation of this with the current model of hardware and software our body has evolved – so it is just like saying, my less advanced faking music technology is better than your more advanced tech – which sounds kinda silly and illogical. And why are these old dudes, that have stood next to a booming stack for 20 years, always telling the kids what sounds good – I imagine they talk so loud as they can’t hear diddly.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 2
  36. This guy has a slightly selective memory.
    Of course disco producers started the automated music trend, they have always been cost-cutting, dreaming of replacing studio musicians with machines.

    But heavy metal, or more exactly DEATH metal producers also used sampled drums from about 1985 on.
    Check out Deicide, Obituary, err, etc.

    You could MIDI-track and help up the performance of a drummer that couldn’t quite keep up the double-kick tempo. And/or sample the snare, and trig it from the track to get more even hits.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 2
  37. The Young Gods and Ministry were great at fusing electronics and that stick with strings instrument (guitar)

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  38. I say, right the hell on!

    To all of those who are upset with this guy …have you actually LISTENED to what is coming out today. The VAST majority of it is 100% pure, unadulterated bullshit.. Total crap. EDM is nothing but disco made BY robots FOR robots. 99.9999999% of pop music has no soul – its just bland puddles of imitation music made by and for idiots who don’t know any better. Every major band out there is nothing more than phony posers. Lounge acts. The creativity index has rocketed through the floor and now resides in the depths of hell somewhere.

    Ask yourself this: How would a soulless robot know if music today is more or less authentic or better? If you can’t tell the difference between REAL music made by actual human beings and the ultra-bland bullshit that keeps the teeny boppers a-boppin, then the bad news is, YOU are actually nothing but a biological robot.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 3
  39. have you actually LISTENED to what is coming out today. The VAST majority of it is 100% pure, unadulterated bullshit.. Total crap

    That is a very naive statement. Do you only listen to pop music and EDM?
    Try
    avant electronics
    Noise
    Techno
    Electro Acoustic and I could name 100 more genres.

    Wise up dude

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 3
  40. Punch-ins are technological enhancement. Tape editing is technological enhancement. Multi-tracking is technological enhancement. Hell, the ability to do multiple takes could be considered “cheating.”

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 0
  41. Excellent rant. I record mostly Hip Hop and Electronic rock stuff… and although the genres are different, the point still holds up.

    Most of the musicians I work with are guilty of over-quantization, over-processing, etc… They spend more time looking at the visual feedback from a computer monitor than they do listening to their instruments. I’d love it if they would spend more time actually composing on their primary instruments before even hitting the record button.

    Also, there is the trend of composing in chunks/loops, instead of verses/intros/chorus/etc… It is very limiting, and affects the performance.

    I’m not saying that the technology is bad, but musicians should be able to make a great song without it. Once a good song is written, knowing the technology well can improve a performance, if used tastefully and with respect to the art being created.

    That said, composing with technology allows a musician to perform things impossible with a standard performance. Modern electronic composition allows the composer to “play” the sequencer, samples, synth and effect parameters, panning, acoustic space, etc… creating a more complex and potentially more emotive performance. That’s some exciting stuff!!!

    I personally wish that more Electronic dance producers would take a good look at old funk music…. the 90s obsession with timing in hip hop, classic rock, old bachata… and learn how to make a song interesting without the usual clichés: white noise build-ups, 8th triplet ascending to 64th note rolls, supersaw, And-style bass lines (1bass2bass3bass4bassahalfstepupvomit) , sidechaining to artificially create movement… too many DJs using generic transitions instead of purpose-built passages… sorry… that guy’s rant made me rant… lol

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
    1. Yeah, I am in the middle of developing a fairly standard Deep House set for a party at a club this weekend, I am using most of the those clichés you mention and learning a lot in the process. It’s fun, it’s dancy, it’s still a heck of a lot of work!

      Just out of interest, do you think it possible to develop top rate dance music skills without learning these clichés first?

      Like this comment?: Thumb up 0
    1. No it doesn’t. You’re missing the 20 seconds after that.

      More people with access to technology that facilitates the creation of sounds does not automatically mean more talent.

      It just means that non-musicians or talentless people (i.e. the majority of the world’s population) can cover up their lack of ability with auto-tuning, effect presets, loop and sample collections, virtual instruments, audio editing and other assorted audio trickery.

      This is more obvious in “singers”
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MUdKrtsrCBI

      but the cancer has spread far beyond pop and electronica. I’ve even heard some recent heavy metal albums where it’s also obvious that the guitarists and drummers are hiding behind clever ProTools editing.

      Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
      1. PS – Most pop/rock/etc these days sounds monotonous, compressed to hell and with hardly any variety despite the technology available. Because of vocal processing and audio editing you can’t even distinguish between singers and instrumentalists. Even in electronic music you hear almost everyone using the same sample collections, loops and presets.

        The end result being massive numbers of albums and tracks that technically are “music”, but artistically are worthless.

        I use music technology on a daily basis, but I also recognise it has added too much useless noise to the musical landscape

        Thumb up 14
        1. “The end result being massive numbers of albums and tracks that technically are “music”, but artistically are worthless.”

          How is this different from any other time in the history of pop music?

          Like this comment?: Thumb up 5
          1. Let me put it simply for you you.

            Until the democratization of technology there was a whole lot of rubbish music.
            Since everyone got their hands on apps that do all the hard work, you still have a whole lot o’ rubbish music.

            The difference is today’s rubbish pop / rock / hip-hop songs all sound the same and appear to use the same resources and sounds

            The same beats and loops processed with the same plugin presets; the same synth and guitar riffs edited with DAWs or simply replaced with samples; the same auto-tuned robotic voices (I really have a hard time telling pop/rock singers apart these days – sometimes it sounds like all top chart pop “artists” are employing the same 2 or 3 robots for all their vocal work).

            Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
    1. I’ve worked in bands, dj’d for 20+ years and done sound/light/party production. Everyone in the 90s wanted to learn guitar, now everyone wants to be a Dj. The technology has made it such that not only can everyone be an instant DJ (albeit not necessarily a good one, but passable) but they can also be producers. Gone is the need for mentors, those people who not only teach the skill, art and craft of music production but the same people teach humility, respect etc for creative elders. Due to the technology there is even more mediocre or worse music out there and sifting through it all is tedious. People aren’t paying their dues or earning their stripes so to speak and the overall quality of music scenes suffer for it. Since audiences are quickly accepting all this mediocrity its making ‘real’ musicians and Dj feel like they are wasting their time in a way.

      Like this comment?: Thumb up 5
  42. Does anyone else feel like if we were living in 1983 and Youtube existed, we’d be watching a video of this guy complaining that synthesizers and drum machines are destroying music?

    Thumb up 81
    1. Anyone and their mom can get a hold of a laptop and those cute little apps called ‘plugins’ and def come up with something that, well…if you can convince someone else it’s good, how can you argue with that? You’ve somehow ‘done it’. But, the point is there’s a loss of musical integrity, and it comes from a lack of understanding music in a traditional sense. I guess this just ain’t a traditional world no more! 😛

      Thumb up 7
      1. every generation tends to leave tradition, to some extent, in the past. it’s what we have come to call evolution. “plug-ins” as you call them can be a wonderful thing, but it’s not the softwares’ fault, if a person does know sound or how to properly manipulate it. for the music i create which is electronic in nature, all i use is software these days. i still have a couple grooveboxes and synths sitting around, but for the ease of creating stems and time saved to put toward the creative process… i must say, i am enjoying the maschine/komplete combination. besides, i challenge you to find a more comprehensive sound library and VST collection.

        Thumb up 10
        1. “every generation tends to leave tradition, to some extent, in the past. it’s what we have come to call evolution.”

          Couldn’t disagree more. Never before have so many people – untrained in the musical arts – been capable of “making” music. Prior to this generation, breaking from tradition required an understanding of tradition and, more importantly, the conscious decision to stray from traditional values and techniques. This is not equivalent to “leaving tradition in the past” but is instead deconstructing tradition and rebuilding new paradigms from the pieces. It is accepting tradition, understanding it, analyzing it, finding inconsistencies, flaws, or unnecessary rules, and working from there. Nothing about the process “leaves” traditional theory anywhere. It is still right there, under the surface.

          However, I do feel that these new technologies will allow for thoughtful, meaningful, historically significant shifts in direction of the greater musical culture. But it requires 2 things:

          1. Artists with the knowledge and ability to create new and interesting methods and techniques.
          2. Adventurous and curious listeners who are willing to forget or at least suspend what they “know” about how music “should” sound.

          Thumb up 12
          1. i agree that ease of access to production software has flooded the market with mediocre music, but record companies have been doing this for decades now. it is not a new phenomenon.
            that being said, if we discounted those who were not classically/formally trained we would have lost out on a lot of good music… the grace of mozart sernade in G would never have been heard and rock would be non-existent due to the lack of jazz being born.

            Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
            1. Where did you learn your music history? Mozart was INTESIVELY trained by his father, who was a leading musician at the time. Seriously, you thought Mozart wasn’t trained? Serenade in G was written in his 30s. You’re talking about someone who wrote their first symphony at age 5 or 6.

              Jazz, most would agree, came from the blues being mixed with New Orleans/Creole.. i.e. FRENCH culture and influences (can you say Debussy? the master of dissonance…)

              Rock came from the blues/gospel more than it came from Jazz. And let’s take the Beatles for example. Many people claimed they weren’t classically trained, and they weren’t. However, they understood songwriting tradition. Only a Northern Song is a prime example.

              “If you’re listening to this song
              You may think the chords are going wrong
              But they’re not
              He just wrote it like that”

              THEY KNEW THEY WERE DOING THINGS DIFFERENTLY. That is the key. It doesn’t matter what chords you play, but you still should know why you’re playing them. Most electronic artists just mash keys on a board until they find 3 notes that sound good together, then turn on a arp, and call it “composition.”

              It’s experimentation. Which is amazing! You might enjoy experimentation, and I know I do. But should you dare call yourself a “composer” because you stumbled upon some good sounding melodies is a disservice to the worlds history of musicians. And many excellent present day composers who put their blood, sweat, and tears into writing a “perfect” piece of music. It’s more than getting high and waiting for “happy accidents”

              Like this comment?: Thumb up 9
              1. it wasn’t a musical education that made wolfgang mimic the fingering on the piano at the age of 3, when he watched his father teaching marie anne. it wasn’t the years of understanding music theory that gave him his innate understanding of chords, structure and tempo by the age of 4. do you honestly think that robert johnson had the “extra” cash to throw down on guitar lessons? not to mention jimmy hendrix…

                my point was this… just because someone doesn’t have “traditional” training doesn’t mean that a savant won’t blow your mind. as i said “if we discounted those who were not classically/formally trained we would have lost out on a lot of good music”.

                Like this comment?: Thumb up 3
      2. I agree with this guy. It’s obvious all the band examples in the video sound like camel mucous being squeezed from rush Limbaugh’s ass. It doesn’t require an explanation from a sound engineer. Lots of people liked crap before technology made it easier. Socrates was against the idea of writing. He thought it would make people stupid and lazy because they wouldn’t have to memorize things if they could write it all down.

        Like this comment?: Thumb up 2
    2. Actually no. I feel like i’m living in 2014, the year when I attend music tech workshops or electronic music jam sessions and see kids go apeshit whenever their laptops and effect racks go down for some reason and they suddenly have to sing in key, or play a simple chord progression on the synthesizer or bang a proper 4/4 beat on a drum.

      I’ve actually seen this happen several times whenever non-musician DJ wannabes are asked to improvise or use actual instruments. It would be extremely funny if it wasn’t so pervasive.

      The guy in the video would have no beef with 1980’s synthesizers – in those days you had to play keyboards anyway, or at the very least being able to create interesting sounds with your synth / sampler and be able to compose interesting song structures with a sequencer.

      Nowadays all you need to do is randomly mess around with samples of other people’s music, stick some random plugins and a pre-packaged hip-hop, house or dubstep beat on top of it, export and just press play.

      Just ask Deadmau5.

      The long hair dude actually says in the video comment section that he appreciates electronic musicians – the main issue here is studio technology nowadays allows a lot of otherwise talentless people to fake it – auto-tuning vocals, editing guitar solos and drum breaks.

      The problem, as always isn’t technology, but rather how you use it.

      Thumb up 9
      1. “The guy in the video would have no beef with 1980?s synthesizers – in those days you had to play keyboards anyway, or at the very least being able to create interesting sounds with your synth / sampler and be able to compose interesting song structures with a sequencer. ”

        that my friend is sooo wrong – I remember people just like him complaining about just such things in the 80s,
        this guy just wants people to get off his lawn.

        Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
      2. Seriously go listen to deadmau5 new album before you go slangin mud son. That’s the dumbest thing I’ve read on this comment thread. I can tell you are smarter than that.

        Like this comment?: Thumb up 0
    3. No. Gotta say I’ve been thinking of returning to my guitars a lot more lately as my core, back to traditional song writing and then bringing in the synths later. There’s something kinetic about playing live, recording whole performances not just loops…

      Like this comment?: Thumb up 3
      1. Well kinetic is movement so yeah… definitely something kinetic about playing an actual guitar.

        Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  43. The problem at least as I see it is not the technology but the money put into formulaic music styles.. There is still good music out there but anything that doesn’t sound like a sure thing gets dismissed. A sad situation.

    Thumb up 11
  44. TECHNOLOGY IS RUINING YOUTUBE RANTS! THE VIEWERS DESERVE BETTER! Back when I was making youtube rants – before some faceless corporate hack was stuffing them full of shit with a custom made shit caulking gun – you couldn’t DIGITALLY EDIT YOUR TAKES. YOU HAD TO NAIL THEM. If you couldn’t go 15 seconds without stumbling and needing a hard cut demanding another take, your engineer would flay your dick with a rusty spoon, shove half of it up your ass, half of it up his own ass, and use the final half to slap you in the face. THOSE WERE THE GOLDEN DAYS [Judas Priest clip]. NOWADAYS all it takes to make a YOUTUBE rant is some mopheaded MOTHERBOY with a CUP OF COFFEE and a HARDWOOD DESK and FANCY MONITORS and A COMPUTER RUNNING ABLETON to yell indiscriminately in front of a camera for WAY TOO LONG and then use DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY to make the performance KIND OF, BUT NOT REALLY digestible.

    Bass players still suck.

    Thumb up 58
    1. Epic. Considering all the gear in the room and absolutely terrible editing, you have to wonder WTF all the hate is about. There have been PLENTY of terrible metal, rock, folk, country, etc bands and as technology improved, they didn’t. But you can always compress the shit out of it and make it “loud and proud,” right? I’m more of a perfectionist and love tech, but yes I’ve spent 90 minutes playing the same stupid riff (I liked it at first, then despised it) to get 30 seconds of what I considered “useful.” Then another couple of days running it through all kinds of virtualized stacks to see what I liked. Not sure how that’s a BAD thing…

      And my favorite synthesized instrument is my Scarbee Rickenbacker bass, because it shows up on time, and sober.

      Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  45. This man is a total chief. Metal is crap and has always been crap. It’s often about technical ability over expression. Give me someone with machines and a great notepad of lyrics (or no lyrics at all) any day. And no, this doesn’t mean Britney! Kate Bush, Aphex Twin, Burial etc. etc. They wrestle far more emotion out of their machines than any hairy Neanderthal with a guitar. And why do all metallers wear denim waistcoats with badges sewn on? Lame.

    Thumb up 28
  46. While I agree with most of what this guy has to say, I also believe that the every evolving landscape of musical technology has allowed us to explore musical dimensions that we would have never dreamed of. I doubt the audio producer of yesterday would have had the creative scope to develop something like dub step. The producer today is part sound designer, composer, audio engineer, and even performer. Now that power also means you can create a lot of crap. But it also means the diversity of creation will eventually create something that has never been heard before.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
  47. tools and talent have nothing to do with each other. in the ‘good old days’ this old man is phantasizing about (and i know those days because i am an old man, too), there were just as many shitty records out as today. except that on these shitty records the hihat usually lagged behind tempo. today, it is on tempo. at least on tempo – but still a shitty record. so, what is the point?

    and – if i may add this – as a professional filmmaker, today, i see so many shitty videos published on the web, just because technology nowadays is dead cheap and widely available. knowing how to switch the camera on and removing parts by ugly jump cuts seems to be enough: tools, but no talent. there may be an example even on this page.

    Thumb up 12
  48. None of the cited artists have any credibility to begin with, so this is shooting fish in a barrel. The fact that garbage pop metal is overproduced is not worth that dinosaur’s fake curse-laden outrage. The fans deserve better? Fans of disposable teen pop rock? They deserve what they get.
    As always, there are thousands of talented and authentic live performances and recordings being made, but you can’t get a click bait rant to spread virally if you praise them.
    Old studios would have loved these digital tools, and they indeed used everything they could get, and lots of 70s and 80s rock and pop was called “overproduced” and fake back then. 50 takes edited into a single track of a guitar solo through expensive compressors and exciters is as inauthentic as a snapped-to-grid correction.
    Holding up Queen (notorious studio-gimmick hounds, though talented) against Brittany Spears (a middle-aged muso’s tired and irrelevant reference) is silly. Not to mention entirely irrelevant for fans of synth gear, EM, EDM, and such.
    Pretend rage from a butt-rock Chewbacca who can’t see that yesterday was just as slick, only it was his familiar kind of slick. Autotune is annoying, but it’s not the same as being caught using a sound-allike or pre-recorded track.
    Authenticity: Who cares! It’s all a trick anyway!

    Thumb up 24
    1. Very good point about Queen being notorious studio gimmick hounds…

      Bohemian Rhapsody had Freddie’s vocals layered something absurd like 50 tracks deep or something. He had very noticeable pitch inconsistency on many of his takes, but when you layer that many takes it covers them up. At the end of the day, we’re all just trying to utilize the tools we have available to make the best record that we can.

      Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  49. To borrow from Frank: Just “shut up and play yer guitar.”

    Too much talking and not enough playing.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
  50. Music products, what are they mostly? Once you remove the rhythm it is all just diatonic harmonic fluff using the same mythologies – hardly worth the effort of a discussion, you only really have eye candy and performance to create distinction within that – which isn’t anything about listening to music, The video is comparing a few isolated shades of tone that aren’t that indifferent to each other. Also a load of rock performers whisper into a good noiseless mic to fool the listeners that they have a voice, when they don’t – hence the big loud unreal screams from the chumps.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  51. Music is practically free, they don’t deserve more.
    uh btw Metal Sucks. Those screams where horrible!!! the drums LAME.
    Thank god for new tech!

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
  52. I don’t really care what technology people use to create their music, as long as the music sounds good.

    Or, that’s a half-lie. I care what technology they’re using, because that’s interesting. If they used a preset in a plugin or whatnot, okay, that’s their choice. Did it sound good? No? Ok, then I won’t listen to it. Yes? Ok, then I’ll listen to it.

    Thumb up 5
  53. 85 post in this thread so far and I wish you all would answer this simple question, are more people capable of playing an instrument today, or less. Are more people learning to play an instrument today or are less people learning to play an instrument today?

    It’s as simple as that, and if you have conviction of your beliefs then answer that simple question and be honest about it.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
    1. I’d say more people can play a bit, due to way cheaper instruments that sound way better than cheap stuff used to.
      Also, there should be more who can play really well since there have been more music educations at all levels over last 40 years.

      However, there WILL perhaps be fewer players over time. US dept of Labor show sharp decrease in pro musician salaries over last 15 years.
      More people who can play x fewer who get paid = really tight situation, not worth pushing yourself.

      All over, I see a win. Media is both visual and musical, more people are playing with it at all levels. Sure, not everyone is Bach or Yngwie Malmsteen (and myself for one sucked already 30 yrs ago, go figure), but it’s a democratization.

      Corporate culture however is more empoverished than ever, but that’s a problem of capitalism and the media landscape.
      The rest of us have to live in the cracks in the pavement, and that’s way better with some .99 phone apps and Bandcamp than with a cassette tape recorder and a post-it at the local record store. Or… at least different?

      Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
      1. First of all america does not equal the world, let me say that right off the bat but where I am located, which is in america there are definitely not more people playing instruments, and there are definitely less music education based programs than there used to be. also there are definitely more bad computer players in america than bad guitar players. this has nothing to do with what constitutes itself as an instrument so don’t let the detractors de-rail the thread. less people can read music, less people can play an instrument, hell less people can even beatmatch two freakin records manually. Music education got clapped along time ago 🙁

        lets take a look at the beat scene, are there more people like flying lotus driving the scene or people like dorian concept, both artist of which I like but the answer is clear.

        Like this comment?: Thumb up 2
        1. Well, and I’m not American, but thanks for the reminder.
          It was the figures I found in 10 mins goggling…

          Like this comment?: Thumb up 0
  54. Is the computer an instrument? Yes, and if you’re really good with it, it’s no difference than if you’re really good with a viola da gamba.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 8
    1. A recent statement by the Pope makes clear,that yes,drum machines as well recent additions goats and gerbils have a soul.

      Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  55. Who can take seriously any guy over 30 with long hair? Even worst when it starts yelling and cursing…

    He made a point, but he made the wrong one.
    This has nothing to do with talent or technologies. If by now he still doesn’t know that…

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  56. I don’t agree entirely with this video, but a good part of it is true… there’s just no more human content in many genres.
    I don’t think that metal is a good example of music either, but somehow, when you really take an overall look, it seems like the rock-oriented things are way better than pretty much anything besides jazz, blues and a few other genres. I’m originally a pianist and it’s kind of a bummer to see that very few people can really play their synthesizers… just take a look at some Youtube videos and you’ll see it clearly.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
    1. Synthesizers are a COMPLETELY different animal than a piano! Don’t be fooled by the fact that many synthesizers use the same keyboard that a piano uses. It’s like saying it’s sad how many pianists barely know how to play an accordion, or a pipe organ. Parts of them look similar, but serve a different purpose. Being a great synth-player requires a totally separate set of skills and knowledge than being a great pianist.

      Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  57. On a side note, has anyone ever noticed the only people that actually listen to metal are the people in metal bands?
    I’ve never met a person that enjoyed listening to metal that didn’t have long hair, an old Pantara shirt on, and played guitar, bass, drums, or what they call ‘screaming’, either by themselves or in a metal group.

    Take a minute to collect your thoughts and you’ll realize the same.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 2
  58. It’s not just the technology. It’s the nexus of the business and the technology. People buy crap because it is being sold to them, and they don’t want a deeper relationship with music.

    Thumb up 9
    1. I’ll give you a prefferential price on my beating two rocks together sample library for Kontakt.It has over 20,000 smaples of me beating two rocks together with 34 velocity layers,intelligent round robin scripting,key switching for all known beating two rocks together articulations.Various mic positions with the ability to blend between them and the amazing beating two rocks together sequencer.With this in hand you’ll never need to beat two rocks together again.Special price $150,normal price $500.Hans Zimmer loves it.

      Thumb up 9
  59. so true.. now we need a computer to beat two rocks together for us, how sad.
    well thank god for native instruments

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 3
  60. Why would I care what tools have been used in production, or how lazy the musician is, or if the musician is a tool himself/herself?

    As a listener I only care about the results.
    Good music: I listen.
    Boring music: I stop listen.

    That simple.

    This type of rants are typical of people feeling they don’t get enough attention because they are so much more talented than others…
    But guess what! Talent is not in *how* you perform things, it is in *what* you produce.

    Loser.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
  61. This guy suffers from a disease that many metalheads have but won’t admit it. The psychological term is called “color symbolism”

    It’s mostly known from football, where one football fan of one team says to another “The team you like cannot play” such human behavior is actually very low in the human instincts/behavior.

    Same with this person:
    “You use a drummachine instead of a human drummer, so your music sucks”
    “You use auto-tune on your vocal, so your vocal sucks”

    Conclusion:
    This guy suffer from “color symbolism”, which is a shame but there is nothing to do about it.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 6
  62. I get this guy’s point, but let’s remember, 90% of music from pretty well any time is crap.

    Except Elvis (Presley for you young ‘uns)…

    And I thought he was a bit harsh on Brittney. I’ve never thought of her fans as people who think about music much- they seem more interested in the image (and wishg they were Brittney) – no one is pretending she’s Joan Sutherland. I don’t imagine her fans listen to much Death Metal(TM) anyway!

    What the autotune/beatdetective syndrome has done though is change the way we listen to music – we expect perfect tune and metronomic timing. That’s why lots of old stuff sound’s so hokey – we notice the imprecision.

    But that’s aright mama…

    And he was a bit hard on Brittney

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 2
  63. hahahahaha people still today trying to define Music …
    We have the same in all music History … “This is Crap … ” This is Good… ” ” Real music are with real instruments … ” kind of ” Real hip hop producers have to use Akai mpc old school ”
    When you become a real Artist , you know the ” Tools ” are not important … if what you bring is ” true ” is from your soul with your heart , you know how its sounds , music is not about to use a real Gibson guitar , Stradiravius Violin or Mac computer with daw… this is just tools … just tools guys , stop judging …
    Technology is gonna be always changes things… , back in time Electric Guitar was Technology too, So you gonna say the real music are supposed to be “played ” ?
    I ask one simple thing …. Music is about motor coordination _?? the only way to get the feeling is with motor coordination of body ? think … but and if your mind go beyond motor coordination ?
    I remember one interview with Robert Moog about sequencers and knobs…. and he said ;
    I dont wanna the keyaboard on synthesizer(the old ones) , because i wanna a different way to “play ” a new way ….
    Like people in this time now , music are changing do you like or not and judge what music is … is waste time … pure waste time .

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 2
  64. as for the synth site, same things happened in 80s scene
    Cabaret Voltaire-The Voice of America was great experiment.
    but laters were getting into boring aspect in 80s

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  65. Some old fret wanking crustie with shit music tastes uses bullying tactics to have a dig at pop punk pop music marketed for teenage girls, it’s a bit sad, and could be symptomatic of the fact he is having a midlife crisis. It’s a bit like at the staff Christmas party when that ugly supervisor who you hate says ‘oh my boyfriend he makes music, you should meet him and your like ‘ I kinda just like weird electronic stuff and 60s soul and shit, just to get away.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 0
    1. Midlife? That happened about 15 years ago for him. This is the attempt at relevance before his old carcass succumbs to terminal decrepitude.

      Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  66. Ninety nine percent of all music is shit.There is only a one in one hundred chance that anybody commenting here is doing anything worth listening to. I am of course excluded form this sweeping generalisation.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 0
  67. This video is so heavily edited, I don’t like it. Couldn’t he have done it in one take instead?

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
  68. He’s pissed at those kids bc they’re getting laid and nobody cares about Steve Vai or Dave Mustaine or whatever crap this clown is into. The world has moved on, some kids are making hits with ableton and a couple hundred bucks worth of recording equipment and that old dinosaur small time studio model is crumbling thanks to the democratization of music technology. Oh, and when it comes to “mediocrity” there’s nothing more mediocre and soulless than metal. I’ll take auto-tuned pop robots with good hooks over pseudo-intellectual phony tough guy Cookie Monster instrument masturbators any damn day.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 4
  69. Love the hater comments here that totally miss the point. I agree with this metal dude. Technology doesn’t make better music, the MUSICIAN does. I can differentiate between a musician and a producer…can you? A person on the Facebook side mentioned Hendrix and the people complaining about his distorted sound, and that it wasn’t music. That could be true. What IS true is that Hendrix played a real guitar through real amps, and there’s not a sim out there that will do what Hendrix did. Don’t fool yourself. Sometime in the future, the tech will get there and this convo will be moot. Until then, nothing beats the real thing for recorded music. The point is wasted on EDM producers.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 2
  70. The tools used never matter for the listener. It’s all about the output and a certain kind of magic. If you can touch someone with your music, make him dance, wild out, relax, laugh or cry, then great! You did a good job. Fuck critics, fuck ney sayers, fuck the industry. Do what you like! If trained pro or beginner. If you love it, do it!

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 3
  71. This guy desperately needs to calm down… IT’S ONLY MUSIC!

    Who cares how much technology is used as long as the listener likes what they are listening to. All this purist you gotta know how to play bullshit is only relevant in the appropriate context… It’s not going to do you a lot of good if you are in a jazz combo and you don’t have the chops whereas if you are playing EDM with a computer then the right knowledge with regards to technology is helpful.
    Some of the greatest artists haven’t always been the greatest musicians and anyway music has such a huge broad wide spectrum that there’s a place for tech noodler’s and the highly trained accomplished muso.

    He looks and sounds like a grandad of 80 only with longer hair…. disregardl!

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  72. rubbish exists today as it existed in the seventies/80/90s. it always will. the thing is, todays rubbish all sounds the same and people actually think that the mediocre fluff they produce with ableton is any good. when I started, we knew we sucked hard. don´t know if the kids today know that too. maybe they don´t care or their attention span is just too short to even realize it. but very very good stuff exists, that´s a good thing. you just have to look for it.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 1
  73. Saying that technology is ruining music would be like saying the microwave ruined good cooking. It’s bullshit. People said the same alarmist nonsense about word processors, and later about modern computers. “This is going to lower the bar for writing, and soon everyone will be an author and great writers will be drowned into obscurity by the oversaturation of the market!” It’s bullshit. People that use software as a crutch, instead of a tool, stick out like a sore thumb. Using these tools correctly takes a lot of talent.

    Like this comment?: Thumb up 0

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *