Weekly survey: Is new rock about to get harder, louder, and angrier?

All popular music, no matter what the genre, tends to move in cycles of varying lengths. There is some chatter among those who follow and study the world of rock music (and alternative music specifically) that we’re due for the overall sound of this music to toughen up, to get harder, and to get louder and angrier.

Mainstream and alt-rock have been very much in a pop phase for at least ten years. Even during the Trump years, alt-rock songs with big guitars and screaming vocals were in short supply. If you stand back, the 10s have been much more like the 80s than the 90s.

So here’s my question to you: Is it time for this music to get harder and angrier again? Is the pandemic going to push musicians in that direction? Or are pop sensibilities the escapist material we need during these times and we’re headed even further in that direction? Or perhaps we’ll just continue in this same direction for a while, buoyed by the kind of songs that blow up on TikTok?

Obviously, this is just a blind prediction and there are no right answers. But where do you stand on this?




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