05 Oct, 2008 Ballsy and Atmospheric Pop
Pop music as a genre features a noticeable rhythmic element, catchy melodies and hooks, a mainstream style and conventional structure.’
Least according to Wikipedia it does and considering that accurate and yet glib definition, how straightforward then it all seems should you try and create some yourself.
Although it has done a decent job of defining the general components of the pop song, it falls short as we all do, when it comes to defining ‘great pop music’. That is not so easy, and the reason for that as we all know is that one person’s opinion of what is ‘great pop music’, is considered ‘utter poop music’ to another. Ultimately a personal choice, the merits of pop music are subjective.
Of course over the decades multitudes of musicians have tried making their own home made versions of pop and we have all grown up with the spectacular results, some of which that have become the chosen songs that seemingly accompany us as we move through our lives. In my case that stretches unsurprisingly all the way back to the brilliance of the early Beatles and continues right up to this year’s model – the fabulous MGMT
Pre Simple Minds we embarked on that challenge ourselves as sixteen year olds, and I clearly remember sitting patiently in Charlie Burchill’s bedroom while he tried to work out what makes a good pop melody. More than thirty years later and despite our notable experience, we were doing the exact same thing just a few days ago and therefore the challenge and the pursuit continues unending.
Incidentally in addition to the Wikipedia definition we would add that full – blooded pop music made by great rock bands should contain strong atmospheres and an emotional reach that somehow manages to grab you and if possible tell you that ‘you are not alone, night follows day follows night etc, and in the end somehow everything will be alright’. If we try to do anything within our own songs it is to create that effect and above all else we hope it comes through continuously within our words and music.
On that train of thought then, if asked to describe the style of our recently recorded album I reply that it comprises ‘full blooded, ballsy, atmospheric pop music in a style that we ourselves believe is rarely heard these days’
Pics by Hilko Nackerts