HistoryPaintings t1_j2dlmev wrote

2022 faves-
Cecile McLorin-Salvant "Ghost Song", Mile Okazaki "Thisness", billy woods "Aethiopes"

2023 most anticipated:
IDK if Putrescine have an album planned, but they put out two splits and a single this year, and for their part it was some of the most interesting, forward thinking, Gorgutsy metal to released. If it's any indication of what they have planned on their next full release, it's going to be amazing.


HistoryPaintings t1_j1z5qqg wrote

Dylan 100% laughs at people who idolize him, and a couple of his songs are just pretentious (and/or cheeky) name checking (Desolation Row- pretentious. Highway 61-cheeky)... but most of his best and most prominent work are diss tracks? (Like A Rolling Stone, Ballad of A Thin Man, Idiot Wind, Positively 4th Street etc.). It isn't hard to tell what they're about at all. They're just colorful. He also writes a lot of love songs- some of which bother to depict human nuance (Others are just creepy, and may reflect crimes he in fact committed?). Also- not hard to decipher- just less blunt than the lyrics of the jingles the Beatles were writing in 1964.

It's okay to dislike things that are well made. I don't like To Pimp A Butterfly. Good kid, m.A.A.d. city is fantastic, but I can't make myself enjoy TPAB. I don't feel the need to try and convince myself that it's secretly tricking people into thinking it's smarter than it is. It's just not my taste.


HistoryPaintings t1_j1ut54j wrote

I think part of this is just that the way music is consumed is more niche and insular now vs. when we were younger (I'm 35). Streaming has replaced radio in how a lot of young people access music- especially at the ages where they actively develop their taste/ identity. There isn't the same dominant source dictating what they hear- just algorithms.

I used to work in a High School and I can tell you Drake was everywhere, but none of the others felt ubiquitous?

Where is hip-hop headed exactly? When I did my year end lists a few weeks back jazz and hip-hop came out with (by far) the strongest output. A really weak year for pop. I have a focused interest in contemporary jazz, so my ability to glean the gold is no surprise- but my interest in hip-hop is secondary at best. Yet there were great records from billy woods, Fatboi Sharif, al.divino x Estee Nack, as well as Infinity Knives & Brian Ennals ( but don't listen King Cobra unless you're ready to be on a list. They say the kind of things that get your phone tapped).

Granted, they all cater to a sound that revolves around my Madvillain roots, but it sounds fine? The mumblers and crossover acts haven't prevented the creation of quality hip-hop- or killed its audience.

The cultivation of niche and eccentric voices with cult audiences is a healthy thing for pop forms that have existed for a few decades. Lou Reed, Frank Zappa, etc.

And uh, I could make a reasonable argument that billy woods > Kendrick Lamar.


HistoryPaintings t1_j1st5kz wrote

Kendrick Lamar is a critical darling... though you have pointed out he's not even particularly financially impressive in the rap field. Whatever dominance he asserts is through the quality of his work and the critical hype that follows it?

Granted, critics feel the need to hail everything Swift or Knowles release- but that's more s symptom of the power that's invested in their continued sales... "too big to fail" rather than a reflection of the quality of their work.

I don't follow football so I don't know who Mahomes is- but I have to assume that if he "dominates" it because he's actually good at what he does.

Herp Albert probably made more money than Dizzy Gillespie, but there's no real question who was the more influential and dominant trumpet player?

*OP also said "make a reasonable argument about somebody else being better than them".

I can make a reasonable argument that Weyes Blood is a better singer-songwriter than Swift.


HistoryPaintings t1_j1sknti wrote

You're naming people who make a lot of money. That's not the same as being good.

Swift has a weird antagonism towards melody, and this year's Beyonce sounds like a poor imitation of Random Access Memories with more self promotion and less piano solo.

Miranda has his moments but he doesn't knock them out the park like Ashman-Menken.

The guy from Messa has a great Page derived sound- but if you want to hear new things done with guitar you just have to listen to jazz. Halvorson, Monder, Okazaki, Loueke. etc. There's no shortage of fresh ideas.


HistoryPaintings t1_iy4adxq wrote

If you think pop/ rock & roll are the center of the universe, they are a huge deal. The certainly raised the bar on creativity within rock and roll.

If you understand that rock and roll at its heart revolves around some pretty basic conventions and limitations, you're left with one inconsistent singer songwriter, and an exceptional jingle writer. These two are connected with some imaginative producers/arrangers at a pivotal moment in the history of pop music.

For better or worse, they (and Dylan) established the idea of the popular singer-songwriter... which ultimately lowered the bar on both professions. If you look at the history of popular song before them- especially what is called "The great American songbook" you find much more harmonic variability, executed by higher caliber musicians.

Also, by the time they folded rock was outgrowing them with acts like Yes, King Crimson, and Frank Zappa, all of whom saw possibilities for rock beyond the pop song format.

Do I think they're overrated? IDK. I don't really care. They are. I listen to their music once or twice a year, and enjoy it a lot during that time. There's otherwise just so much else out there.


HistoryPaintings t1_ixml0ss wrote

If you like Chet Baker, you should listen to the man he made his career imitating (who has multiple recordings of that song) Pretty much everything he released between 1956 and 1970 is solid to legendary. Then pick your favorite sidemen from those recordings and use allmusic to find and listen to all their most acclaimed records.

Then, IDK. just listen to "Yessongs".

Winehouse is a weird flex- she's fine but she barely released 10 songs in her lifetime?


HistoryPaintings t1_ixmg5pr wrote

Spend entire days listening to nothing but Bach and Coltrane's discography. Train yourself to hear the mechanics of music. You'll hear things you didn't before, and enjoy things you couldn't before.

Then train yourself to hear other musical languages, like maqams and ragas. If you've run out of music to blow your mind at 23, you haven't looked very hard. Two mind bending, stuff of legend records came out this year alone, "Aethiopes" and "Thisness".