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chutterhanban's avatar

Is the death of Alternative music imminent?

Asked by chutterhanban (1015 points ) July 13th, 2008

Bands such as Seether, Nickelback, Papa Roach, etc. seem to be fading fast. Each of them are ending up sounding SO similar and have all made their “rock ballads.” Is their genre really dying? Or do America’s current Alternative bands just sound too similar? Any other suggestions/thoughts?

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10 Answers

tinyfaery's avatar

I think “alternative” died in the early nineties, when bands like RHCP, Nirvana, The Cure, Depeche Mode, etc, started topping the charts. Now we just have genres of pop: pop rock, pop punk, pop rap, etc. There’s still bands like Radiohead, that defy labels. Otherwise, you have to search for bands that aren’t on major labels, or don’t get radio play.

Fortunately I live in a city that has an “awesome” radio station; Indi 103.1 and KCRW, both offer great music.

PupnTaco's avatar

Personally, I think the whole “alternative” label as an identifier of genre is bogus. It’s either rock or pop or folk. There is no “alternative” music.

Alternative to Top 40? Billie Holiday – there’s an alternative. Or try on some Jimmy Smith. Or George Jones.

p.s. KCRW = :)

iJimmy's avatar

Alternative music will evolve just like any other genere. But it won’t die.

EnzoX24's avatar

Alternative evolved in shit. Now everything is messed in with pop and it just sounds terrible. Nickelback, Hinder, ugh…..

Honestly, there was one band when I first heard that I said t myself: “Rock is saved!” And it was Velvet Revolver. Now they kicked out their singer, Scott Weiland, so God knows how its gonna be for them.

Knotmyday's avatar

“Alternative” is the music exec term for what used to be just called “college rock;” which was awesome! The university stations didn’t rely on the mainstream heavy-rotation pop formats. We just played what sounded good, and took the recommendations of the audience seriously. A lot of indie bands got signed because of college stations playing their free ep’s, made it “big,” dropped into heavy rotation, and faded into obscurity. “Alternative” stations hyped the music we were already listening to in an attempt to sell products to our demographic. I agree with pup that trying to label it a genre is misleading; more accurately, it’s more of a marketing ploy.

chutterhanban's avatar

I guess I’m leaning toward what PupnTaco is saying, but not taking it so far. I think the reason that Alternative is dying is because pop is bleeding into it. Do you remember the Alternative scene of 8 or 9 years ago? What “typical” or “mainstream” high-schooler would have listened to Godsmack or Korn? Those who listened were unique kids. Back then, these bands were completely “Alternative” to the mainstream. At this point, what “typical” high-schooler doesn’t know at least 3 Nickelback or Seether songs by heart (whether they like the band or not)?

aidje's avatar

“Alternative” doesn’t tend to actually mean anything. I’ve heard everything from U2 to Nickelback described as Alternative. And without insulting anyone (::coughnickelbacksuckscough::), I think these two bands are about as different as two bands can be.

dadodude93's avatar

Alternative is pretty much the stupidest thing to call a genre. When it originated, it was the alternative from the norm, but now? It’s its own genre, not just a group of random bands that few people listen to.

deaddolly's avatar

there will always be alternative music…but the bands will come and go.

seems when a band gets popular, they are no longer alternative.
ie Green Day Alternative to me means different; not the norm.
I sincerely hope there’s always something different.

wenbert's avatar

Pearl Jam never died for me!

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