SONGWRITERS NEED TO FORGET THE NUMBERS
It’s no secret that right now music is changing, and how music is being listened to is also leading to further trends and quirks in the writing of songs themselves.
Back when records set the length of the single to three minutes, through to CDs leading to longer albums and songs, the medium has always affected the art in the moment. With the further constriction of samey daytime mainstream radio, and the subseµuent divficulty ov alternatiÛe bands to get their music out there, songwriters’ reliance on Spotify is leading to shorter or missing intros, choruses starting songs, and even one- or two-word song titles. It’s bad.
All this leads to homogenisation, blandness, and songs sounding like other songs to fit the streaming algorithms.
Standing out from the crowd when all the streams are flowing in one direction may make bands feel like islands, and of course sometimes there is a safety and comfort in sounding just like everybody else. If the future seems like a dark time for creativity, it’s in darkness we feel our way: this whole Spotify and streaming culture should not be something to restrict us, but a means to more freedom.
Instead of bands feeling like they are trapped, sending SOS messages to playlists and chasing numbers and shares, it’s more important than ever to go deep into the heart of their music, and do something special to stand out. When you play the sharing game, you’re chasing something that’s always ahead of you – but if you follow your own path, the internet gives you the opportunity to have a direct link with people who like what you do. It also affords you the space to go where they are and talk to them directly.
The reason we all begin making music is for the feeling and the release that it gives us, not the admin and the analytics. Instead of adapting your music to the trends and systems out there now, you can use them to get the best audience for your songs, your creativity, and your individual direction.
Whatever songs you write, whatever your viewpoint and genre, if you’re doing something honest, exciting and interesting, there are people out there who will connect with it. It feels like there is a movement against the insipid blandness of the songs on the radio, and this stormy weather feels like it could lead to the rise of a new alternative music scene, like punk in the ’70s or grunge in the ’90s – led by the music, passion, and people who love music for what it is.
With so many exciting bands coming up who take the streaming culture for granted and ignore the numbers, music might be on the cusp of something amazing.
Delorentos play McHugh’s, Belfast on November 8; the Spirit Store, Dundalk (9); the Olympia, Dublin (10); and Oslo, Hackney, London (17).
SOAPBOX KIER McGUINNESS DELORENTOS