Inside Voices: Luke Granered, “Oversaturated”
Written By: Luke Granered
Preface: The following is opinion built upon my experiences up until this point. I will do my best to keep things open ended, because opinion is subject to change, but will also be critical where I believe I need to be critical. Nothing is meant to be personal or attacking here. These are thoughts on the most fluid form of creativity.
In case you didn’t know, there are an unbelievable amount of bands. I’m sure most people can tell because they see posts on the internet about so and so’s new band every single day, maybe every hour even. But going on tour, you really get to see how insane it is. It’s an uncountable number. They pop up, they disintegrate, sometimes they start and don’t do anything other than take up another spot on the list. This has a lot to do with the accessibility of everything involving music: recording, self-promotion, etc. But it can cause a lot of touring bands to wonder if the accessibility is a good thing (or maybe just me). Could the quality of music be diluted because the amount of work necessary is decreasing?
I will also say that being in a touring band is work despite the accessibility of the tools required to make it happen. I wouldn’t say it’s a lot of work, especially if you have a booking agent, but it is work. It’s just enough work to be a draining process. So when a band hits the road 50-250 days a year, it can be really disappointing to see a band recreating a current bands sound. Maybe disappointing is the wrong word. FRUSTRATING. It is frustrating. The reason being that all bands have to claw their way into people’s ears/lives, and the main thing making that so difficult is the over-saturation of music. Everything feels so reproduced sometimes. Drawing from influences is one thing, but to say “we want to start a band like Title Fight” is not going to create something new.
I am a huge advocate for songwriting. Just write a song. Don’t try to write a riff that sounds like “Quicksand”. It’s so rewarding to write a riff, jam on it with your bandmates, and then realize its a product of the bands influences together. So far, it may sound like I’m complaining about bands, but I’m not necessarily complaining. I want to be really explicit here. When you start a band, you have a huge opportunity. You can really create something special. So special that it could have an effect on an entire country’s culture, if you’re lucky. But it has to come from a very innocent place. I obviously haven’t done anything so worthwhile that I am an example of creating something that pure. But I like to keep it in mind, and would encourage everyone to do the same.
I would bet that if more artists created from a more basic canvas, that people would gravitate towards them rather than the band-clones that open up every tour that comes to their hometown.Emo-revival? What’s the point? I’d like to see a revolution. Where are the artists that are just trying to create and create until they have a body of work that someone can obsess over? Ryan Adams is an example of that, I think. Someone who just writes and writes and writes non-stop, trying new things along the way. That is admirable.
I don’t want to come across as bitter. Sometimes I am bitter about it, but that’s selfish of me. I want to encourage any artist to come up with a scary idea and go for it. Confidence is the defining factor of anything you create. If you can back up something you make confidently, people WILL pay attention. I swear.