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The glory of rock. The tedium of rock

>Bad Religion rips themselves off more than any band I ever know.
>Amazingly, on the album "Bad Religion 80-85", there are two consecutive
>tracks that have virtually the exact same riff except that the final two
>notes are reversed.  (and I am a fan :)
>My theory on rock 'n' roll, is that it is limited.  There is bound to be
>loads of repitition.

Honey! No kidding! You should try being a Smithereens
fan-cum-listmanagerboy and putting up with complaints that they're
derivative, or unduly Beatles-influenced, or some other euphemism for

Rock is, indeed, limited. (I like it anyway.) But it's not the only genre:
We do have the blues, jazz, disco, deathmetal, and German-language country
music. Anyway, it seems that the variety in rock music stems from:

* Lyrical ingenuity (e.g., They Might Be Giants; the Smiths)

* Hewing just close enough to established styles to be familiar, hence
acceptable, but far enough away to be at least nominally distinctive, hence
credible (e.g., to paraphrase actual Sloan kids from memory of when I
interviewed them ~2 years ago, Sonic Youth + My Bloody Valentine + modest
dollop of originality = Sloan)

* Vocalists: Sinéad O'Connor is different from Darius Rucker is different
from Dave Bidini is different from Jimi Hendrix is different from Patrick
Fitzgerald is different from Peter Garrett is different from Freddie
Mercury is different from Art Bergmann is different from Courtney Love, ad

* Language change: Indochine and Les Rita Mitsouko rock pretty fine in
French (two of the few formations françaises who do, though I'm also a fan
of the more MOR Luc De Larochellière)

... further examples, kids?

I just love this list.

                                        Joe Clark