Attack of 1990's underground.
Since 1980, seattle underground music prepare for attacking the world with their style. It's means in three of decade, the world consider to hear their music. And ear of all the world approve that in 2000 underground music become king of the king of music.
REM, Pearl Jam & Creed lead alternative rock mainstream.
This underground product that beat the world. After glory of rock & roll speed that perform by Guns 'n' Roses, the world shocked with rhythm from underground. A kind of noise that make fever for all the world. This fever take a long time. Caused by this, the rock n roll mainstream hiding for a while.
In my ear, the main difference with the previous is on vocals. Rock music which originally carried the high-octave vocals, not much done by the alternative rock musicians. They kill the audience with guitar rhythm that full of emotion, not with melody guitar. But in present they still keep play song with four minutes of duration, same with previous generation. So many band raise this kind of noise, and success, such as Radiohead, REM, Muse, The Cure, and so many. in Britannia, Oasis lead.
Green Day born with new punk.
'Punk not dead'. If you listening this music mainstream, maybe shocked, because this punk stuff is different with David Bowie or Ramones era. More wild, and more powerful. And the musician not with stand hair,.... They come with jeans and black shirt. I can't describe the main character of this music, unless so many vocalist from this genre singing with nose voice, sometimes like a groan of pain.
Some article say that new punk is branch from alternative rock, but some say not, because in 1967 punk already existing.
Nirvana plays grunge.
Still, seattle underground touching the world with crazy stuff called 'grunge'. Their penetration almost like when Led Zeppelin appear from other planet. Full with rhythm, free drums expression, and social criticism lyrics. Government officials might be offended and outraged against this one. In this case, you can see that music is not only can make your ears warm, not only make your head burst, but also change the political order.
Some of music observers say that grunge is still a branch from alternative rock, because some band of alternative rock-- also release the grunge album. But nirvana maniac always cried that grunge is grunge. It's no problem. In my ear grunge exploring most of guitar distortion with repeatedly, and also repeatedly with drums. With this, grunge grow bigger and bigger, but when Kurt Cobain dead, some of taste was gone. And soundgarden still survive.
Linkin Park make something that called nu metal.
Industrial music can do anything, including mixing heavy metal with disc jockey,..Maybe to make hottest than 1980's heavy metal. So you can dance with this, also head banging. But according to my ears, this music creates a static noise and leave the melody. Especially with a jump of repetition from DJ who dominating the track. Nu-metal musical strength lies in the solid rhythm, and blaring vocals roar. And of course quite appropriate if the lyrics are sung theme of social criticism. Because as a product of the underground, where music is created because of the element of rebellion and anti-establishment.
Linkin Park, Korn, and Lim Bizkit are icon for this mainstream, but we know Faith No More and Rage Against The Machine as pioneer.
Maroon 5 and many more similar bands declare the new concept of pop-rock
The evolution of rock music became something that need more simplification. In 1990's, rock music born with chords that more simple than rock in 1980's. Sometimes with acoustic, and forget melodic-interlude. Yes, in this new pop rock, some times you can't find the melody. As you know, guitar melody is icon in 1970-1980's rock songs. But not now.
Some of friend of mine says that rock music in 1990's periode become something easy. More close to the music pop than heavy metal. It's so funny, because in middle of 1980's we all know that some of us can't clearly make a differences between rock and heavy metal. Almost same between rock and heavy metal. In 1980's era, you call that music become rock if you hear some interlude melodic or keyboards sound. And if you hear double guitar plays rhythm, you can call this music as heavy metal.
Back to 1990's rock era. In here, perhaps you just hear a little bit of melodic guitar, and the remains is most close with pop music. And this formula make rock more easylistening than before.
What happen with progressive rock ?
At least we have two notes about this, the first is prog-metal, and nu progressive as second.
Dream Theater as volunteer of new genre called prog metal.
In 1980-1990's --but not in underground manufacturing-- the new genre was born, born from mixing the different polar. Dream Theater is one of volunteers for wedding of progressive polar verso heavy metal. You can enjoy the melodic keyboards at the crowd of heavy metal rhythm. You can't find this sound at 1980's heavy metal. As we know, the heavy metal in 1980's era, identified as music without keyboards, but in Dream Theater music, sound of keyboard maybe as mandatory.
Stand with influenced from progressive maestro like Yes, King Crimson, and Marillion, Dream Theater push the world with their music that make some old man realized that progressive music has been reborn with more powerful. Heavy metal become something new progressive one. It's called prog - metal.
Progressive rock is a genre with multiple elements. And in prog-metal, some band play with speed melodic guitar and double drums, that duel with keyboards sound and high octave vocal. Some of they play like that with epic lyrics and symphonic arrangement, such as Symphony-X, Opeth, and Nightwish. Actually, the play more progressive than power & speed metal musician like Helloween. If so, this kind of music not a part of alternative, but derivative from heavy metal.
Spock's Beard, Porcupine Tree, The Flower Kings at nu progressive line.
Yes and King Crimson fans maybe surprised with this condition. How in 1990-s the progressive mainstream appears with different taste. In 1970's, progressive give the complicated of rock with avant garde and symphonic. Now, progressive music born with full of improvisation of jazz and fusion. But, you can still enjoy the rhythm and melody of rock, there was no change for this.
As Yes or Pink Floyd era, serialize and long duration songs still as major feature of new progressive music. Improvisation dan musical skill still as icon. And you know, the progressive musician as a idealism person, past or present, or whenever... You can't change this characteristic.  haris fauzi - 27 december 2010
pic : donovansf.com
in present, only rock theme that can push me to write in english... and i must learn more and more.. thanks to roel & ima :)