#1
Posting at the risk of sounding like an attention seeker, but I must get this out of my system.

Last Monday night I was at a Muse gig. The other opener was White Lies, an upcoming British pop rock band AFAIK. I kept wondering why people around me jumped up and down and clapped and cheered for them cause the band played only one good song and they didn't deserve those cheers. Anyone could have created their music.

Same with many other critically acclaimed bands & artists. I've yet to hear a solid Smashing Pumpkins record. Bands like Foo Fighters really piss me off cause they sell out places like Wembley and their music has a very high "meh" factor. I'd cut off over half of the songs on Faith No More's "best of" album. White Stripes look cool on stage and I'd like to love them but can't. Stone Temple Pilots' Purple didn't really leave traces in my head. The most respected early Metallica & Megadeth albums have way too many fillers. You get the drift?

I totally understand Axl Rose for Chinese Democracy. It is simply put one of the best rock albums of the past decade, so who the hell cares if it took 14 years to make, or if it doesn't have Slash? It totally lives up to the Guns N' Roses name as it is made of win.

Now here's the really irritating part. I have had multiple opportunities to join a local rock/metal band. Playing with other people would really help my own guitar skills and I'd get to play gigs instantly, but I won't join, because their songs don't impress me. I do not want to play material I don't believe in. I also couldn't play guitar or bass at a music course in school because of this. The songs were shit. And I couldn't ever be something like a session musician playing random music for money.

Has anyone here ever felt like this or anything?


tl;dr: I have too strict quality control and don't respect music as music, it has to be expectionally good. This causes me to completely avoid playing mediocre songs in any situation.
#2
I think it takes talent to write the 3 chords pop songs Jack White can construct, and Dave Growl kind of has a simular thing going on for him. They aren't bands i'd go out and listen to, but it is what it is.

Muse is very simular, their last album imo they're clearly making songs to appeal to the pop audience and sell records. That's everyones goal, but imo they're going downhill musically
#3
its just every one has different tastes music is extremely subjective...some songs that you play may have a high "meh" factor to others and they would avoid playing them.

for example...Chinese democracy had some good songs on it...but in my opinion it was "iite" not really that great..

Truth of the matter is in life you have to make compromises...even in music if you ever want to play shows.

Also try not to get a big head and believe you are "above" some songs. cause that will only lead to pissing people off and people believing you have little to no music taste and talent your self.
#5
Quote by Jyrgen
Posting at the risk of sounding like an attention seeker, but I must get this out of my system.

Last Monday night I was at a Muse gig. The other opener was White Lies, an upcoming British pop rock band AFAIK. I kept wondering why people around me jumped up and down and clapped and cheered for them cause the band played only one good song and they didn't deserve those cheers. Anyone could have created their music.

Same with many other critically acclaimed bands & artists. I've yet to hear a solid Smashing Pumpkins record. Bands like Foo Fighters really piss me off cause they sell out places like Wembley and their music has a very high "meh" factor. I'd cut off over half of the songs on Faith No More's "best of" album. White Stripes look cool on stage and I'd like to love them but can't. Stone Temple Pilots' Purple didn't really leave traces in my head. The most respected early Metallica & Megadeth albums have way too many fillers. You get the drift?

I totally understand Axl Rose for Chinese Democracy. It is simply put one of the best rock albums of the past decade, so who the hell cares if it took 14 years to make, or if it doesn't have Slash? It totally lives up to the Guns N' Roses name as it is made of win.

Now here's the really irritating part. I have had multiple opportunities to join a local rock/metal band. Playing with other people would really help my own guitar skills and I'd get to play gigs instantly, but I won't join, because their songs don't impress me. I do not want to play material I don't believe in. I also couldn't play guitar or bass at a music course in school because of this. The songs were shit. And I couldn't ever be something like a session musician playing random music for money.

Has anyone here ever felt like this or anything?


tl;dr: I have too strict quality control and don't respect music as music, it has to be expectionally good. This causes me to completely avoid playing mediocre songs in any situation.


Well, I know what you mean, but personally I think you should get over it (and possibly yourself).

We all have our opinions...... I think Siamese Dream is a great Album by the SP, and they have other good ones as well. I happen to think axle rose has about the dumbest voice in the history of rock, and I don't care much for Chinese Democracy. But people like you do like it obviously so I figure rather than spoil your fun, I'll just listen to something else that I do like.

So, IMO it's not an issue of perfectionism but rather pulling ones head out of their own ass. I think alot of guitarists/musicians go through that phase.
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Jul 24, 2010,
#7
Thanks for the responses, even the Cobain one
Quote by Axim Bassist
Truth of the matter is in life you have to make compromises...even in music if you ever want to play shows.
Yep :/ I kind of would like to but not just for the "I'm in a rock n roll band" feeling. If I could make something better than decent I would.
Quote by Axim Bassist
Also try not to get a big head and believe you are "above" some songs. cause that will only lead to pissing people off and people believing you have little to no music taste and talent your self.
Has already led to that
#8
Quote by GuitarMunky
So, IMO it's not an issue of perfectionism but rather pulling ones head out of their own ass.
I think you're probably right, honestly thanks for saying it aloud
#9
Quote by Jyrgen
I think you're probably right, honestly thanks for saying it aloud


hehe NP
shred is gaudy music
#10
I think you should honestly get off your high horse and take time to enjoy music for its emotional content rather then aspiring to perfection. The great musicians of our time (or all time) may have amazing technique and complex material, but thats not what makes them great, its the feel and the ability for people to relate to the content.
#11
Quote by tehREALcaptain
I think you should honestly get off your high horse and take time to enjoy music for its emotional content rather then aspiring to perfection. The great musicians of our time (or all time) may have amazing technique and complex material, but thats not what makes them great, its the feel and the ability for people to relate to the content.
I completely agree. I don't require fretwanking or complexity. My favourite band is actually Queen.
#12
If there's one thing that I've learned in my 63 years, it's that musical tastes vary wildly and that people expect different things from music.
So, as the late Ricky Nelson said, "you can't please everyone, so you've got to please yourself" (Garden Party. Good song.)

A great deal of "popular" music is....Mediocre at best. This has always been so. We sometimes forget when we think of the great classical music that survives today after hundreds of years that there was a huge body of thoroughly mediocre classical music that did not survive because it was nasty...
We should not forget that even though we think artist or band "X" is really, seriously lame, thousands (or millions) of other folks might enjoy it a great deal.
I, for instance, never got Michael Jackson. Squeaky-voiced little weirdo if you ask me...
But millions loved him, and many heavyweights in the industry praised his talent and work ethic..... Likely it's just me.
When I trot out the list of folks I really like, most people look at me like I'm from Mars.
Dave Alvin? Tom Russell? Ray Wylie Hubbard? Who are those guys?
#13
People dont clap Muse because they think their technically fantastic they clap them because they enjoy the responce they get from their music and thats not always about the quality of the music but it sometimes is, it can be about the lyrics meaning something to someone or the song being associated with something in their life. So talent isn't everything and maybe you should think if your music does that.

Personally i love playing any music regardless of if i like it.
SMILE!
#14
Too many people these days take 'simple' music for granted, saying "i could of written that lady gaga song! that songs only 3 chords anyone cold of done that".

Long story short no you couldn't. It takes skill to write a pop song that will be catchy and sell well.
#15
stay a perfectionist. write music of your own and let other people join your band. or at least find someone else that you can write with who shares the same goals and standards. this suggestion was made above, but you really might find that classical music will satisfy your standards for perfection. it is obviously way different from rock/metal, but when it comes to painstaking standards for the exact placement of every single note, it is hard to beat J.S. Bach, for instance.
#16
Quote by griffRG7321
Too many people these days take 'simple' music for granted, saying "i could of written that lady gaga song! that songs only 3 chords anyone cold of done that".

Long story short no you couldn't. It takes skill to write a pop song that will be catchy and sell well.


Simplicity in songwriting is not the same as ease. On one hand someone can take years to write a "simple" song and on the other someone can take a few days to write a "complicated" song. It's not about the resources, it's what you do with them. That doesn't change the fact that the piece in question is simple. I've never heard anyone say they themselves could have made that and gotten ridiculously popular because then they would not be on the internet whining about it. It is however irrefutable that the majority of mainstream music is simple and easy to play on the instruments it was written for (if any). That can not be considered a drawback, however it is certainly a fact.

Perhaps some people just enjoy music "written for" musicians. Music which is in its core esoteric and elitist which generally only people which are at least pretty interested in playing themselves would enjoy. Does that mean that all technical and "complicated" music is soulless and mechanical? Not at all. I believe they are simply different media you can use to better express ideas and emotions. Like I said, it is not about having a plethora of resources and tools, it is about using what you have to its greatest extent.
#17
It sounds to me that you just don't like music.
You should post some of your material and show us and all the bands you mentioned how it's done.
It must be hard being too good for all of those bands that want you to play for them.
#19
I think Munky beat a lot of us to the punch. *sigh*

Anyway, TS, why not try writing more? I don't mean it in a smartass "Haha then you'll see it's not so easy" way but writing might give you more of an appreciation for little things other musicians do or aspects of music that you might be glossing over now.
#20
This should be the problem of "musical elitism".

And the head/ass thing too.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#21
When I was 20 I was at university and really getting into shred after having discovered Satriani through my roommate. Every week we'd scour the local record shop and I scored some cracking finds including a couple of obscure Shrapnel cd's which I still have.

That was where it was at, the pursuit of guitar excellence - it was worthy, exciting, noble. And boring.

One day I glanced away from the exercises in my guitar mag and instead read a Dimebag Darrell interview. I wasn't much of a fan but he was the poster boy for guitar mags at that time. I read through his influences and noticed even a shredder like him had a wide range of influences. One of his main influences was Ace Frehley from KISS, which was a name I'd seen crop up in quite a few of interviews. So I went to town, and instead of buying yet another guitar isntrumental CD I bought a copy of KISS Alive II instead.

Best musical decision I ever made.

Never forget that music is supposed to be fun, if you're not having fun you're doing it wrong. If you don't get all tingly when someone wallops a simple powerchord through a massive PA then you're trying far too hard to be cool.
Actually called Mark!

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#22
Quote by Mr.DeadDuck
People dont clap Muse because they think their technically fantastic they clap them because they enjoy the responce they get from their music and thats not always about the quality of the music but it sometimes is, it can be about the lyrics meaning something to someone or the song being associated with something in their life. So talent isn't everything and maybe you should think if your music does that.

Personally i love playing any music regardless of if i like it.
I was talking about White Lies. Muse certainly deserves all the applauses.
Quote by griffRG7321
Too many people these days take 'simple' music for granted, saying "i could of written that lady gaga song! that songs only 3 chords anyone cold of done that".

Long story short no you couldn't. It takes skill to write a pop song that will be catchy and sell well.
I agree. Lady Gaga seems to make some really good melodies. But for example, the mentioned Foo Fighters isn't mostly very catchy. Pretender, Monkey Wrench, My Hero are, but the rest of their material (that I've heard) isn't really, and I was wondering why they're selling out Wembley, if they have around 3 memorable tunes. Is that enough for the average audience member? Maybe and then there's the general having fun experience.
Quote by libriumbum
It sounds to me that you just don't like music.
You should post some of your material and show us and all the bands you mentioned how it's done.
It must be hard being too good for all of those bands that want you to play for them.
I like music. i don't like filler songs in general.
I worded myself very badly in the first post. I generalized by saying that anyone could write what those artists play. That's not true. I don't have any material as of yet and I don't claim I'm a good songwriter. The only thing that I'm good at is that I can tell a killer from a filler.
However, if I was given enough time I'm sure I could create a song that would be as good (highly subjective) as one of those White Lies' crowd-pumping fillers they played during their set.
Quote by Blind In 1 Ear
maybe you should play classical or jazz fusion if you dont think popular music has enough complexity or whatever. honestly, they may be meh to you, but thats just you. i personally agree with you, but there is no good or bad music, just different music.
Good idea, but complexity isn't necessary. It's the great melodies that matter to me, I guess.
Last edited by Jyrgen at Jul 25, 2010,
#23
Here we go again..

There is something that we should take in mind when discussing music. It's especially important for us musicians, because we *make* music and not only listening to it.

People listen to music, go to concerts and play music for different reasons. What makes a song, or a musician or band 'good' is subjective, because people are looking for different things.

For some, it's about art. It's about being creative, original, expressive. Just like other types of 'art', there is an eternal debate what art is, you'll see people that look for this arguing wheter something is meaningfull or pure, it has to be thought provoking.

For some, it's just about the energy and fun. It doesnt have to be good, it doesnt need meaning or originality. It's about going out, having fun, drinking, playing with friends or just going wild seeing that band. If it gives an emotional response, it's good enough. If it has a nice beat so you can dance on it for a few minutes, thats all.

For some, it's about musiciality. You see this the most amongst musicians. You must have skill on your instrument, solid grasp of theory. If the music isnt played live, it sucks. No, it doesnt just suck, it's not even considered music at all! Who cares if people like that beat and dance to it? It all made on a computer, so obviously those people are ignorant and have no taste (sarcasm)

And so on..

Annyhow, the point I'm trying to make is that going to a muse concert and thinking.. "There isnt realy any art or musiciality in it, but why are these people cheering?" is pointless. Those people arent cheering and having a good time because they think it's great art or great musicians, they're having a good time because they're having fun, being part of an audience, being somewhere in a special place outside of their 9 to 5 lives.

And keep in mind, when you think what music is or should be, or what musicians should do, that going for the art, or fun/emotion, or just musicianship are all valid reasons in themselves.
#24
Quote by ShadesOfGray
Annyhow, the point I'm trying to make is that going to a muse concert and thinking.. "There isnt realy any art or musiciality in it, but why are these people cheering?" is pointless. Those people arent cheering and having a good time because they think it's great art or great musicians, they're having a good time because they're having fun, being part of an audience, being somewhere in a special place outside of their 9 to 5 lives.
There is certainly musicality (and art) in Muse, and that's why I headbanged till my neck was sore during their gig. I meant that White Lies, the opener, kinda sucked.
Quote by ShadesOfGray
And keep in mind, when you think what music is or should be, or what musicians should do, that going for the art, or fun/emotion, or just musicianship are all valid reasons in themselves.
Thx, great post man
#25
Quote by Jyrgen
There is certainly musicality (and art) in Muse, and that's why I headbanged till my neck was sore during their gig. I meant that White Lies, the opener, kinda sucked.


I must have misread that bit then, but I was kinda making a more general statement using that as an example.

But in that case, it could be that the people going to the concert were in a 'wooo, we're seeing Muse!!!!1!!!!111!' mood, had a couple of drinks and were just having fun even if the opener band wasnt that great.
I've seen the opposite too, and that is just..lame. You know, some huge act comes to town, the venue gets sold out. It looks like verybody is in a celebratory mood. And the opener bands come on stage.. and you can hear crickets chirp. People just standing there.. no reaction. As if people cant have fun even if it's not their favorite band or something

And yeah, Muse is also artfull, and has also complexity. I wasnt trying to make the point that music falls in only one of those things, or people listen only for one thing. But it does seem that there is usually focus on one thing over the others.

I thought it over a bit, and the argument I was trying to make is that people when people discuss about music or other art / entertainment things, wheter they are creating it or enjoying the creations of others, there's some communication problems.

People have preferences on what they feel is important. But that also influences their view on it. The problem comes from when a person can only see from that outlook, for example: someone seeing music inherently as art. That is not bad, but it becomes bad when that person can only judge or see music in the context of art, and judges music as bad music because it's considered bad art, when that piece of music wasnt meant as an art statement.
Or when one musician puts the other down because he doesnt play the instrument 'right', but he wasnt looking to be a skilled guitar player but what kind of wierd experimentation he can get out of using a screwdriver on a guitar.

Thx, great post man


You're welcome
#27
I would take you seriously, but that Foo Fighters lost you a lot of credibility.

Seriously though: I really do understand where you're coming from. You just seem a bit pretentious. You don't have to enjoy shitty music (in fact no one should, but most of the time it's pretty subjective anyway), you just have to appreciate music for what it is. Music shouldn't have to impress you or prove itself to you. Just listen to it, and if you can feel it, great. If not, so be it.

It just seems to me like you've hit a snag in your ability to listen to music. You're likely looking too far into it. Hell, I'm guilty of it too. I listen to a song and go "eh, it's all just power chords and the bass is hammering out root notes," or "cool, they used yet another I V vi IV progression." That's not what music is about though. It's not about how harmonically rich or technically demanding it is. It's about how you can feel the groove, if it tells a story or paints a picture through the sounds, how emotionally moving it is, etc.

Again, I would be a hypocrite to be completely condescending, as I do the same thing. It's just something we all have to strive to get away from as musicians.
Only play what you hear. If you don’t hear anything, don’t play anything.
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#28
Quote by Pettah
WHAAAT? you dislike everything but Chinese democrazy? Lol i hate that album haha, think it sucks xD
Out of the mentioned artists in the original post, I like Smashing Pumpkins, Faith No More, Megadeth and Metallica & STP too, but the last two to a lesser extent. But every single one of these puts too many fillers on their albums . I often like the most known songs cause they're the best, but why would an artist want to make a filler anyway?

Disclaimer: this might make no sense
Last edited by Jyrgen at Jul 25, 2010,
#29
Quote by food1010
I would take you seriously, but that Foo Fighters lost you a lot of credibility.

Seriously though: I really do understand where you're coming from. You just seem a bit pretentious. You don't have to enjoy shitty music (in fact no one should, but most of the time it's pretty subjective anyway), you just have to appreciate music for what it is. Music shouldn't have to impress you or prove itself to you. Just listen to it, and if you can feel it, great. If not, so be it.

It just seems to me like you've hit a snag in your ability to listen to music. You're likely looking too far into it. Hell, I'm guilty of it too. I listen to a song and go "eh, it's all just power chords and the bass is hammering out root notes," or "cool, they used yet another I V vi IV progression." That's not what music is about though. It's not about how harmonically rich or technically demanding it is. It's about how you can feel the groove, if it tells a story or paints a picture through the sounds, how emotionally moving it is, etc.

Again, I would be a hypocrite to be completely condescending, as I do the same thing. It's just something we all have to strive to get away from as musicians.
Thanks, you're right
#31
Quote by Pettah
I say, like mr seagull up there, look up some old kiss, or ac/dc, or whatever, simple music man just listen to it, happy, simple, upbeat music, and watch the videos and see how they enyoy playing it. Even if its simple.

Find out that music isnt about playing hard and extreme stuff
I do this. Most of the music I listen to daily is not more complex than Led Zep. Hell quite a part of it is Zep.

Actually I was at an AC/DC concert a few months back and had a great time cause they played mostly good songs (basically it's a greatest hits tour) and I enjoyed Angus's improvised solos in particular.
KISS makes me cringe though But I give them that a couple of their biggest hits are seriously great
#32
It does take a considerable amount of talent to write a song or several songs that millions love, even if it's not the most technical/full of soul song out there. Blink 182 has some of the simplest riffs, but I and millions others love 'em anyway. It's not the same talent as writing an fully instrumental, technical piece such as Paul Gilbert or Ywingie Malmsteen, or something full of soul and feel like Hendrix or Stevie Ray Vaughan, but it takes talent nonetheless.
This ends now, eat the goddamn beans!
#33
Quote by Skynyrd890
It does take a considerable amount of talent to write a song or several songs that millions love, even if it's not the most technical/full of soul song out there. Blink 182 has some of the simplest riffs, but I and millions others love 'em anyway. It's not the same talent as writing an fully instrumental, technical piece such as Paul Gilbert or Ywingie Malmsteen, or something full of soul and feel like Hendrix or Stevie Ray Vaughan, but it takes talent nonetheless.
Yes, I agree 100%.
#34
I think you're an overly zealous musical douche bag.

Keep w/ that attitude and see how far you'll get in the business man
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#35
Quote by diofan88
I think you're an overly zealous musical douche bag.

Keep w/ that attitude and see how far you'll get in the business man
Thanks. Getting into anywhere in the business was never my intention though.
#36
I see nothing wrong in it.

Yeh i dislike Foo's aswel, but then i like white stripes.

And i fully know Jack White consists of power chords and rarely anything else. Yet i still like it.

I think simplicity and complexity belong together - i dont like the foo fighters and most of it i feel is american trash, but i admit some of their songs are bloody amazing. My Hero and Best of You being some of the exceptions.

I like Muse alot, i also like random Pop acts, La Roux, Jem and so on - and whilst i know it's simple it's not hollow like alot of stuff out there is. I think that makes the difference, anything with depth you can appreciate. I think the voice impacts this alot, take McFly (yeh...) most of their songs consist of say 3/4 chords - but the changing voices and lyrics define them. It also 'masks' the simplicity.

It's like, if you layer simplicity - what do you get? You get complexity.

Depth is the key to any successful song - whether it be lyric based, voice based, heavy bass or a even a sexy synth.
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#37
Quote by diofan88
I think you're an overly zealous musical douche bag.

Keep w/ that attitude and see how far you'll get in the business man


I understand you're point - but say take any band, one you like, one you dislike.

Now place yourself between them - where do you stand? Below the one you like, above the one you dislike? Or below both? Or above both?

As said by Matt Bellamy "As a guitarist you have to balance arrogance and confidence - i'd like to think i was just confident" - and that's what you have to do.

Sometimes arrogance pushes you to be better because you think you're better, especially if you're proven wrong.

Everyone is musical douche bag at times - it'd be crazy to say no ones guilty of it. There is a time and place for it though, to accomplish things sometimes you have to have tunnel vision and believe you're better than the competition - but it's when you prove it that you tone it down and accept it, instead of taking it to new ego heights.
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#38
Quote by Anthony1991
I see nothing wrong in it.

Yeh i dislike Foo's aswel, but then i like white stripes.

And i fully know Jack White consists of power chords and rarely anything else. Yet i still like it.

I think simplicity and complexity belong together - i dont like the foo fighters and most of it i feel is american trash, but i admit some of their songs are bloody amazing. My Hero and Best of You being some of the exceptions.

I like Muse alot, i also like random Pop acts, La Roux, Jem and so on - and whilst i know it's simple it's not hollow like alot of stuff out there is. I think that makes the difference, anything with depth you can appreciate. I think the voice impacts this alot, take McFly (yeh...) most of their songs consist of say 3/4 chords - but the changing voices and lyrics define them. It also 'masks' the simplicity.

It's like, if you layer simplicity - what do you get? You get complexity.

Depth is the key to any successful song - whether it be lyric based, voice based, heavy bass or a even a sexy synth.
Yep, wise thoughts, especially the last sentence. I think a song or a performance is good, if it leaves an impact of some sort, this is usually a melody or lyrics or something. It doesn't matter if you want to like the song it or not, it's good if you can recall even a bit of it later.

this is tired rambling, might be incoherent
#39
Quote by Jyrgen
Yep, wise thoughts, especially the last sentence. I think a song or a performance is good, if it leaves an impact of some sort, this is usually a melody or lyrics or something. It doesn't matter if you want to like the song it or not, it's good if you can recall even a bit of it later.

this is tired rambling, might be incoherent


Well it's like, take live performances - i think it goes out the window if the performer is amazing. If they're giving it everything i find myself not even caring if i like the song or not i just enjoy the expression and the joy within that.

I refuse to say though "all music is good music" blah blah - because i've heard neo nazi pop-rock. And i do get annoyed at people responding to the question - so what do you listen to? "Oh, anything i like all music" ah right so you like I Cum Blood do you?

I think music - as a feeling you can feel and that can be projected - in that sense means all music is good music because it's ethereal. But if you look past that, like say take neo-nazi rock - on a moral stand point how the hell can you be ok with that? Yeh the chords could well be crunchy and awesome, but morally i refute those scumbags. Therefore their music is not ethereal.

I think being alone with a song makes a difference, like i hated the song Bonkers by Dizzee Rascal - because you just couldn't get away from it at the time, yet one party it gets stuck in my head and i eventually download it. Then i learn to appreciate it - apart from the god awful R&B voice somewhere in the middle that totally kills the song and lacks any real musical idea.
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Last edited by Anthony1991 at Jul 26, 2010,
#40
dont flame me guy this is just my honest opinionj, you like chinese democracy so you must not like music in general, id thouroly love to see you put your heart and soul into half the song even the "meh"bands do, its there thing, so my question now is are you famous? no so you must be jealous because you cant find your thing and like bad albums