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Dec 98

Plagarised from KillKrazy

Directly from Watch the World Die (other great stuff there :), is the answer to the question I asked on 18/12.

ask killkrazy
Inferno lobbed this question on his website…what’s the difference between the music genres rock, alternative rock, and alternative? Instead of emailing him what I thought, I’ll answer it here instead.

First off, alternative rock and alternative are one and the same thing, so the question really is, “What’s the difference between rock and alternative?” Nowadays, and this is gonna sound repetitive, there is no difference. Alternative died when Nirvana hit it big (and was buried when Nine Inch Nails also hit the charts) and record companies realized that the buying public was sick and damn tired of Madonna, Michael Jackson, Def Leppard, and Bon Jovi (and all their clones).

So, what the hell was alternative? Well, the genre can only be defined by the bands that were considered alternative. Janes Addiction and the Pixies spring to mind. So does The Smiths, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Skinny Puppy (before their music was classified as Industrial – this may be my own personal interpretation). Love and Rockets (and the previous incarnation of the band Bauhaus – although, as is the case of the Smiths and The Cure, these bands are retroactively called Goth Bands).

Basically, alternative was advanced garage bands that were too skilled to be ignored and two weird to gain “mainstream” attention – thus, they were “alternative” to mainstream tastes (as defined by record companies). That’s the best I can do for an official definition of the term.

But, like I said, alternative is dead. The music scene is one big melting pot of Marilyn Manson, The Prodigy, and Puff Daddy and his extended family. Ten years ago, these bands and others like them would be basically unknown with a hardcore following. Times have changed, thank all that’s holy, and now more exposure is given to bands and artists that don’t just sing shitty little love songs. Nowadays, the closest anyone comes to being alternative is, maybe, Ani DiFranco or Bif Naked. Maybe Rammstein and Atari Teenage Riot can be thrown in there, too. It’s a hard call, and not one I’d like to make to be perfectly honest.

Regardless…it’s all rock ‘n’ roll, which is even easier to define…it’s whatever music your parents hate.

Thanks! There’s your answer Yappy. So… it appears all the genres have blended somewhat.

  6:20pm (GMT +10.00)  •  Music  •   •  Tweet This  •  Add a comment