Has music run out of ideas? Are today’s bands simply recycling the past to produce music without any originality?
Considered one of the most innovative music writers in the world, Simon Reynolds is depressed by the lack of originality in contemporary popular music. And in his new book Retromania: Pop Culture’s Addiction to its Own Past, Reynolds takes the music business to task, arguing that it has become addicted to endlessly recycling its history.
So when Reynolds came into the TechCrunchTV studio, I asked him what can save the music industry. His answer will surprise you. Revolutionary new technology is one solution, he suggests. And another is radical musical innovation from non-western markets like China.
Reynolds’ first experience writing about music was with Monitor, a fanzine he helped to found in 1984 while he was studying history at Oxford. The publication only lasted for six issues.When it was discontinued in 1986, Reynolds was already making his name writing for Melody Maker, one of the three major British music magazines of the time (the other two being the New Musical Express and Sounds). His early Melody Maker writings often contained strong criticisms of the concept...