Another Rambling From A Crazy Metalhead: Comparing Apples To Oranges
For as much as the music world has changed, it’s creepy how much some of it has stayed the same. There is a striking resemblance between bands of the 70’s and 80’s to bands now. I don’t mean that their music sounds the same by any means; I mean they are similar in the way of career paths or just in the way that they don’t go away. For example:
Nickelback is the new AC/DC
I know this isn’t going to be popular with most of the world for as hated as Nickelback is and as legendary as AC/DC is. But look at the similarities: they constantly get every drop out of an album and dominate radio airtime with their songs that are either blatantly or subtlety sexual. Then there is the love them or hate them factor. There are still plenty of people who think that either vocalist of AC/DC sounded like they were getting circumcised every time they walked into the studio. Granted the musical talent in the band assures us that, ‘You Shook Me All Night Long’ is not going to be knocked out of fame by ‘Something In Your Mouth’ in the next fifteen lifetimes.
Shinedown is the new Lynyrd Skynyrd
You know that band that always feels like they are on the cusp of being the biggest band in the world? They continually put out one catchy song after another that is always popular with a wide spectrum of fans but never quite achieve world domination. I’m not making this comparison because of the ‘Simple Man’ cover either. That was just a coincidence. Could it be the Jacksonville roots of both bands? Maybe. Just as long as this one doesn’t end in an airplane crash.
Mastodon is the new Pink Floyd
The usual comparison is that Tool is the greatest thing to roam the Earth since Roger Waters and David Gilmour went all high school teen girl fight on each other. The outstanding difference that makes me call bullshit is simple: Tool is fucking lazy. If Pink Floyd made their fans wait six years at a time for a new album they would have been irrelevant faster than Iron Butterfly. Mastodon is always busy with a new off the wall, most likely drug induced concept album. Not to mention that most of the members do vocals for both bands, it makes this comparison not as retarded as Tool’s collective work ethic.
Marilyn Manson is the new Alice Cooper
Here’s another misconception, because people always throw Rob Zombie’s name in there as a copycat of everything that Cooper has done thirty years before. Theatrically, that’s true, but that’s where it stops. Look at Cooper’s early releases and how nobody cared about them, much like Manson’s Portrait of An American Family and Smells Like Children. All of a sudden both climbed the ladder with ‘I’m Eighteen’ and ‘The Beautiful People’, respectively, before hitting the top with ‘School’s Out’ and ‘The Dope Show’. After plateauing they both released good follow up albums, although Cooper had three compared to Manson’s one. From then on, it was a plunge to the bottom for both musicians where nobody in the music industry has had the heart to tell them to throw in the towel. Oh, and they both also have a thing for minor film roles instead of going balls out like Mr. Zombie.
Muse is the new Queen
While both hailing from England, Queen was the band that was on top of the world thirty years ago with an unmistakable sound and voice. Shortly after Freddie Mercury’s death, the torch was quietly passed to Muse. Muse sounds like and has the stage show of an evolution of where Queen would be if Freddie had continued into the 21st century still in his prime (you know, without the AIDS). Both bands also felt the need to release live albums from Wembley as well. No matter how much people like comparing them, Muse is not the next Radiohead and we should rejoice at this.
Maybe I will continue this some other time with more bands, maybe I won’t. I just felt like it was long overdue to point this stuff out. I will also point out that Nickelback still blows. The point in all of this is that no matter how much music has changed, in the end it really hasn’t. The biggest difference is that the bands that were considered heavy thirty or forty years ago are strangely comparable to the alternative rock bands of this generation.