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I'm forwarding this to the list for those of you like me who've never
before heard of "Grunge music." Those who have needn't read it.
I asked a friend of mine (software engineer/rock and roll musician)
to explain. As far as I know, he's never heard of Derrida, unless
I've mentioned the name to him) and he doesn't yet know I'm doing this.
I hope nobody minds. Alan L.
> Ever hearn of "Grunge Music"? 'splain in many words as you like. a
Minimum explanation: Music which is "grungy."
Medium explanation: Music which is "grungy" in terms of sound quality
(heavily distorted guitars, or even vocals) and feel ("loose", unpolished,
even amateurish.) Typified by bands like Nirvana, Pearl Jam, et al.
Long explanation: Take the "medium" explanation and add the following:
"Grunge" is often associated with a wave of bands from Seattle, Washington,
the most prominent exponent being Nirvana. Rock music is supposedly all
about rebellion, which is a difficult position, now that it pervades
everything and is accepted by parents, grandparents, and politicians.
As a result, new sub-styles come about every few years as a reaction
to what went before, so the current crop of teenagers can feel they are
rebelling. "Grunge" is one of the latest. It rebels mainly against the
technically advanced rock of a few years ago, where guitarists often had
incredible technical skill, along with electronics rigs as complicated as
a synthesizer players. It rebels against polished, "big" acts.
In "Grunge," the goal is to sound like a stripped down rock band (IE, guitar,
bass, drums, vocals), playing loud and very distorted, with no pyrotechnic
skill. It's all about the mood and the feel, very heavy, and somewhat about
the songs. There seems to be lot of almost surreal angst expressed,
especially in the videos. Grunge bands are also typified by a wardrobe of
ripped jeans, plaid shirts, uncombed and badly cut hair, sometimes resembling
the stereotypical homeless person... Or me in college. (Tho my hair was
In other words, it's a return to a hard rock of the past, only with less
finesse, and more fuzz. Its a lot like "punk", only without the "new wave"
I think the rebellion against grunge is just about starting. Part of the
reason I say this is that a guitar equipment company has introduced a
"Grunge Pedal," designed to give your guitar the grunge sound. And of
course there are grunge-influenced clothes in department stores. When it
gets to that level of marketability, that normally means it's on its way
out with the truly "hip."
I'm starting to hear acousting instruments creep back in, which of course
is the natural "rebellion" against grunge.
Micro explanation: It's nothing new.
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