Not All But About the Music

Music is an art form whose medium is sound. Common elements of music are pitch (which governs melody and harmony), rhythm (and its associated concepts tempo, meter, and articulation), dynamics, and the sonic qualities of timbre and texture. The word derives from Greek μουσική (mousike), "(art) of the Muses".

The creation, performance, significance, and even the definition of music vary according to culture and social context. Music ranges from strictly organized compositions (and their recreation in performance), through improvisational music to aleatoric forms. Music can be divided into genres and subgenres, although the dividing lines and relationships between music genres are often subtle, sometimes open to individual interpretation, and occasionally controversial. Within "the arts", music may be classified as a performing art, a fine art, and auditory art.

To many people in many cultures music is an important part of their way of life. Greek philosophers and ancient Indian philosophers defined music as tones ordered horizontally as melodies and vertically as harmonies. Common sayings such as "the harmony of the spheres" and "it is music to my ears" point to the notion that music is often ordered and pleasant to listen to. However, 20th-century composer John Cage thought that any sound can be music, saying, for example, "There is no noise, only sound." According to musicologist Jean-Jacques Nattiez, "the border between music and noise is always culturally defined—which implies that, even within a single society, this border does not always pass through the same place; in short, there is rarely a consensus.... By all accounts there is no single and intercultural universal concept defining what music might be, except that it is 'sound through time'."

~The Middle Ages|||The Renaissance|||The Baroque Age|||

The Classical Period|||The Romantic Era|||The Twentieth-Century~

Around 500 A.D., western civilization began to emerge from the period known as "The Dark Ages," the time when invading hordes of Vandals, Huns, and Visigoths overran Europe and brought an end to the Roman Empire. For the next ten centuries, the newly emerging Christian Church would dominate Europe, administering justice, instigating "Holy" Crusades against the East, establishing Universities, and generally dictating the destiny of music, art and literature. During this time, Pope Gregory I is generally believed to have collected and codified the music known as Gregorian Chant, which was the approved music of the Church. Much later, the University at Notre Dame in Paris saw the creation of a new kind of music called organum. Secular music was sung all over Europe by the troubadours and trouvиres of France. And it was during the Middle Ages that western culture saw the arrival of the first great name in music, Guillaume de Machaut.


Generally considered to be from ca.1420 to 1600, the Renaissance (which literally means "rebirth") was a time of great cultural awakening and a flowering of the arts, letters, and sciences throughout Europe. With the rise of humanism, sacred music began for the first time to break free of the confines of the Church, and a school of composers trained in the Netherlands mastered the art of polyphony in their settings of sacred music. One of the early masters of the Flemish style was Josquin des Prez. These polyphonic traditions reached their culmination in the unsurpassed works of Giovanni da Palestrina.

Of course, secular music thrived during this period, and instrumental and dance music was performed in abundance, if not always written down. It was left for others to collect and notate the wide variety of irrepressible instrumental music of the period. The late Renaissance also saw in England the flourishing of the English madrigal, the best known of which were composed by such masters as John Dowland, William Byrd, Thomas Morley and others.


Named after the popular ornate architectural style of the time, the Baroque period (ca.1600 to 1750) saw composers beginning to rebel against the styles that were prevalent during the High Renaissance. This was a time when the many monarchies of Europe vied in outdoing each other in pride, pomp and pageantry. Many monarchs employed composers at their courts, where they were little more than servants expected to churn out music for any desired occasions. The greatest composer of the period, Johann Sebastian Bach, was such a servant. Yet the best composers of the time were able to break new musical ground, and in so doing succeeded in creating an entirely new style of music.

It was during the early part of the seventeenth century that the genre of opera was first created by a group of composers in Florence, Italy, and the earliest operatic masterpieces were composed by Claudio Monteverdi. The instrumental concerto became a staple of the Baroque era, and found its strongest exponent in the works of the Venetian composer Antonio Vivaldi. Harpsichord music achieved new heights, due to the works of such masters as Domenico Scarlatti and others. Dances became formalized into instrumental suites and were composed by virtually all composers of the era. But vocal and choral music still reigned supreme during this age, and culminated in the operas and oratorios of German-born composer George Frideric Handel.


From roughly 1750 to 1820, artists, architechts, and musicians moved away from the heavily ornamented styles of the Baroque and the Rococo, and instead embraced a clean, uncluttered style they thought reminiscent of Classical Greece. The newly established aristocracies were replacing monarchs and the church as patrons of the arts, and were demanding an impersonal, but tuneful and elegant music. Dances such as the minuet and the gavotte were provided in the forms of entertaining serenades and divertimenti.

At this time the Austrian capital of Vienna became the musical center of Europe, and works of the period are often referred to as being in the Viennese style. Composers came from all over Europe to train in and around Vienna, and gradually they developed and formalized the standard musical forms that were to predominate European musical culture for the next several decades. A reform of the extravagance of Baroque opera was undertaken by Christoph von Gluck. Johann Stamitz contributed greatly to the growth of the orchestra and developed the idea of the orchestral symphony. The Classical period reached its majestic culmination with the masterful symphonies, sonatas, and string quartets by the three great composers of the Viennese school: Franz Joseph Haydn, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and Ludwig van Beethoven. During the same period, the first voice of the burgeoning Romantic musical ethic can be found in the music of Viennese composer Franz Schubert.


Composers of the period broke new musical ground by adding a new emotional depth to the prevailing classical forms. Throughout the remainder of the nineteenth-century (from ca. 1820 to 1900), artists of all kinds became intent in expressing their subjective, personal emotions. "Romanticism" derives its name from the romances of medieval times -- long poems telling stories of heroes and chivalry, of distant lands and far away places, and often of unattainable love. The romantic artists are the first in history to give to themselves the name by which they are identified.

The earliest Romantic composers were all born within a few years of each other in the early years of the nineteenth century. These include the great German masters Felix Mendelssohn and Robert Schumann ; the Polish poet of the piano Frйdйric Chopin; the French genius Hector Berlioz ; and the greatest pianistic showman in history, the Hungarian composer Franz Liszt.

During the early nineteenth century, opera composers such as Carl Maria von Weber turned to German folk stories for the stories of their operas, while the Italians looked to the literature of the time and created what is known as Bel canto opera (literally "beautiful singing"). Later in the century, the field of Italian opera was dominated by Giuseppe Verdi, while German opera was virtually monopolized by Richard Wagner.

During the nineteenth century, composers from non-Germanic countries began looking for ways in which they might express the musical soul of their homelands. Many of these Nationalist composers turned to indigenous history and legends as plots for their operas, and to the popular folk melodies and dance rhythms of their homelands as inspiration for their symphonies and instrumental music. Others developed a highly personal harmonic language and melodic style which distinguishes their music from that of the Austro-Germanic traditions.

The continued modification and enhancement of existing instruments, plus the invention of new ones, led to the further expansion of the symphony orchestra throughout the century. Taking advantage of these new sounds and new instrumental combinations, the late Romantic composers of the second half of the nineteenth-century created richer and ever larger symphonies, ballets, and concertos. Two of the giants of this period are the German-born Johannes Brahms and the great Russian melodist Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky.


By the turn of the century and for the next few decades, artists of all nationalities were searching for exciting and different modes of expression. Composers such as Arnold Schoenberg explored unusual and unorthodox harmonies and tonal schemes. French composer Claude Debussy was fascinated by Eastern music and the whole-tone scale, and created a style of music named after the movement in French painting called Impressionism. Hungarian composer Bйla Bartуk continued in the traditions of the still strong Nationalist movement and fused the music of Hungarian peasants with twentieth century forms. Avant-garde composers such as Edgard Varиse explored the manipulation of rhythms rather than the usual melodic/harmonic schemes. The tried-and-true genre of the symphony, albeit somewhat modified by this time, attracted such masters as Gustav Mahler and Dmitri Shostakovich, while Igor Stravinsky gave full rein to his manipulation of kaleidoscopic rhythms and instrumental colors throughout his extremely long and varied career.

While many composers throughout the twentieth-century experimented in new ways with traditional instruments (such as the "prepared piano" used by American composer John Cage), many of the twentieth-century's greatest composers, such as Italian opera composer Giacomo Puccini and the Russian pianist/composer Sergei Rachmaninoff, remained true to the traditional forms of music history. In addition to new and eclectic styles of musical trends, the twentieth century boasts numerous composers whose harmonic and melodic styles an average listener can still easily appreciate and enjoy.



~Rock and roll|||Folk rock|||Psychedelic rock|||Progressive rock|||Soft rock|||Hard rock and heavy metal|||Punk rock|||New Wave|||Glam metal (Hair metal)|||Instrumental rock|||Alternative music and the indie movement|||Grunge|||Britpop|||Nu metal and Rapcore|||Garage rock revival|||Emo|||Metalcore|||Doom Metal|||Gothic metal|||Black metal||Death metal|||Progressive metal|||Grindcore|||Post-rock~

Rock music is a form of popular music with a prominent vocal melody accompanied by guitar, drums, and bass. Many styles of rock music also use keyboard instruments such as organ, piano, or synthesizers. Other instruments sometimes utilized in rock include harmonica, violin, flute, banjo and less common stringed instruments such as mandolin and sitar. Rock music usually has a strong back beat, and often revolves around guitar, either electric or acoustic.

Rock music has its roots in 1940s and 1950s rock and roll and rockabilly, which evolved from blues, country music and other influences. According to All Music Guide, "In its purest form, Rock & Roll has three chords, a strong, insistent back beat, and a catchy melody. Early rock & roll drew from a variety of sources, primarily blues, R&B, and country, but also gospel, traditional pop, jazz, and folk. All of these influences combined in a simple, blues-based song structure that was fast, danceable, and catchy."

In the late 1960s, rock music was blended with folk music to create folk rock, blues to create blues rock and with jazz, to create jazz-rock fusion, and without a time signature to create psychedelic rock. In the 1970s, rock incorporated influences from soul, funk, and latin music. Also in the 1970s, rock developed a number of subgenres, such as soft rock, heavy metal, hard rock, progressive rock, and punk rock. Rock subgenres from the 1980s included synth-rock, hardcore punk and alternative rock. In the 1990s, rock subgenres included grunge-style rock, britpop, indie rock, piano rock, and nu metal.


Rock and roll

Rock 'n' roll came from rhythm and blues (R'n'B), country, and in turn its influence fed back to these cultures, a process of borrowings, influences that continue to develop rock music. Rock 'n' roll had runaway success in the U.S. and brought R'n'B-influenced music to an international audience. Its success led to a dilution of the meaning of the term "rock and roll", as promoters were quick to attach the label to other commercial pop.

Rock 'n' roll started off in the early-to-mid 1950s in the United States. African-American artists such as Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Bo Diddley, and Fats Domino played predominantly to African American crowds. While these key early rockers were indisposed to racism, local authorities and dance halls were very much divided upon racial lines.

Mainstream acceptance of rock and roll came in the mid-1950s when what Bo Diddley describes as 'ofay dudes' (or whites) signed to major labels and started covering their material. Elvis Presley and Bill Haley & His Comets, Buddy Holly, The Big Bopper, Jerry Lee Lewis and Johnny Cash often toured and played together in dance halls and clubs across the US and Britain.

Towards the end of the 1950s "chessboard" crowds (both black and white patrons) would emerge at rock and roll concerts, as fans discovered the original artists of the songs they knew from television and the radio, such as Little Richard's "Tutti Frutti". The genre ignited British enthusiasm for rhythm and blues and the development of British rock.


Folk rock

The folk scene was made up of folk music lovers who liked acoustic instruments, traditional songs, and blues music with a socially progressive message.The folk genre was pioneered by Woody Guthrie. Bob Dylan came to the fore in this movement, and his hits with Blowin' in the Wind and Masters of War brought "protest songs" to a wider public.

The Byrds, who playing Bob Dylan's Mr. Tambourine Man, helped to start the trend of folk rock, and helped to stimulate the development of psychedelic rock. Dylan continued, with his "Like a Rolling Stone" becoming a US hit single. Neil Young's lyrical inventiveness and wailing electric guitar attack created a variation of folk rock. Other folk rock artists include Simon & Garfunkel, Joan Baez, The Mamas & the Papas, Joni Mitchell, Bobby Darin and The Band.

In Britain, Fairport Convention began applying rock techniques to traditional British folk songs, followed by groups such as Steeleye Span, Lindisfarne, Pentangle, and Trees. Alan Stivell in Brittany had the same approach.


Psychedelic rock

Psychedelia began in the folk scene, with the Holy Modal Rounders introducing the term in 1964. With a background including folk and jug band music, the Grateful Dead fell in with Ken Kesey's LSD fuelled Merry Pranksters, playing at their Acid Tests then providing an electric acid rock soundtrack to their Trips Festival of January 1966, together with Big Brother & the Holding Company.

The Fillmore was a regular venue for groups like another former jug band, Country Joe and the Fish, and Jefferson Airplane. Elsewhere, The Byrds had a hit with Eight Miles High. The 13th Floor Elevators titled their album The Psychedelic Sounds of the 13th Floor Elevators. The music increasingly became associated with opposition to the Vietnam War.

In England, Pink Floyd had been developing psychedelic rock since 1965 in the underground culture scene. In 1966 the band Soft Machine was formed. Donovan had a folk music-influenced hit with Sunshine Superman, one of the early psychedelic pop records. In August 1966 The Beatles released their Revolver album, which featured psychedelia in Tomorrow Never Knows and in Yellow Submarine, along with the memorable album cover. The Beach Boys responded in the U.S. with Pet Sounds. From a blues rock background, the British supergroup Cream debuted in December, and Jimi Hendrix became popular in Britain before returning to the US.

1967 was the year when the psychedelic scene truly took off. Many pioneering records came out including the first album from The Doors and Jefferson Airplane's highly successful Surrealistic Pillow. The Beatles' groundbreaking album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band was released in June, and by the end of the year Pink Floyd's The Piper at the Gates of Dawn, Cream's Disraeli Gears and even The Rolling Stones's Their Satanic Majesties Request. As the Summer of Love reached its peak, the Monterey Pop Festival went underway headlining the top bands of the genre including Jefferson Airplane and also introducing Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix to the mainstream.

The culmination of rock and roll as a socially-unifying force was seen in the rock festivals of the late '60s, the most famous of which was Woodstock in 1969 which began as a three-day arts and music festival and turned into a "happening", as hundreds of thousands of youthful fans converged on the site.


Progressive rock

Progressive rock bands went beyond the established rock music formulas by experimenting with different instruments, song types, and musical forms. The Who popularized the rock opera. Some bands such as Pink Floyd, The Moody Blues, Procol Harum, and Deep Purple experimented with new instruments including wind sections, string sections, and full orchestras. Many of these bands moved well beyond the formulaic three-minute rock songs into longer, increasingly sophisticated songs and chord structures. With inspiration from these earlier artists, referred to as "proto-prog", it flowered into its own genre, initially based in the UK, after King Crimson's 1969 genre-defining debut album, In the Court of the Crimson King. Progressive rock bands borrowed musical ideas from classical, jazz, electronic, and experimental music. Progressive rock songs ranged from lush, beautiful songs to atonal, dissonant, and complex songs. Few achieved major mainstream success, but large cults followed many of the groups. Pink Floyd, Yes, Rush, Jethro Tull, and a few less notable others were able to work in hit singles to their otherwise complex and untraditional albums to garner a larger audience.

By the late-1960s, German audiences began listening to progressive rock bands from Britain and the United States. During this period, avant-garde musicians in Germany were playing electronic classical music. These German avant-garde musicians adapted their electronic instruments for a style of music that blended progressive rock and psychedelic rock sounds. By the early 1970s, German progressive rock (later called krautrock) bands were blending jazz (Can) and Asian music (Popol Vuh). The music by bands such as and influenced the development of techno and other related genres.

In Italy progressive rock was also popular in the 1970s. Some Italian progressive rock bands were Premiata Forneria Marconi, Le Orme, Banco del Mutuo Soccorso and Area International Popular Group.

Although Pakistan has a long history of rock music producing legendary bands such as Junoon and Strings it was only in the 90s that progressive rock made its mark on Pakistani rock scene. One of the bands is Mizraab from the city of Karachi who started of in 1996 with their first album An Abstract Point of View. Then Panchi in 1999. Failing to leave an impact with their first albums Mizraab launched their third album Mazi Haal Mustaqbil in 2004 which proved a great success. Pakistani progressive rock is slowely gaining popularity and more bands are making this kind of music.

There are a few rock bands in India, like Silk Route or Euphoria. THe music is mainly targeted at young adults and is gaining more acceptance in recent years.

In Turkey progressive rock began to grow with Baris Manзo in the mid-1970s. His symphonic-progressive rock album 2023, released in 1975, is one of the most important albums in Turkey. He made a contribution to the other genres of rock music with his other albums and became a famous rock star in Turkey.


Soft rock

Rock music had a short-lived "bubble gum pop" era, of soft rock, including groups such as The Partridge Family, The Cowsills, The Osmonds, and The Archies. Other bands or artists added more orchestration and created a popular genre known as soft rock. Performers included Barry Manilow, Neil Diamond, Olivia Newton-John, and Eric Carmen, and groups such as Bread, The Carpenters, Electric Light Orchestra, England Dan & John Ford Coley, and Tina Turner.


Hard rock and heavy metal

A second wave of British and American rock bands became popular during the late 1960s to the 1970s, with groups that were more steeped in American blues music than their more pop-oriented predecessors. Bands such as Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, Alice Cooper, Judas Priest, Status Quo, Aerosmith, Queen, Black Sabbath, and Uriah Heep played highly amplified, guitar-driven hard rock that would come to be known as heavy metal. Heavy metal languished into obscurity in the late 1970s.

A few bands including Kiss, Queen, Black Sabbath,AC/DC, Led Zeppelin and Aerosmith maintained large followings and there were occasional mainstream hits such as Blue Цyster Cult's "(Don't Fear) the Reaper".Music critics overwhelmingly disliked the genre. This began to change in 1978 following the release of Van Halen's eponymous, self-titled debut album. The album helped to usher in an era of high-energy rock and roll, based out of Los Angeles, California.


Punk rock

Punk rock started off as a reaction to the lush, producer-driven sounds of disco, and against the perceived commercialism of progressive rock that had become arena rock. Early punk borrowed heavily from the garage band ethic: played by bands for which expert musicianship was not a requirement, punk was stripped-down, three-chord music that could be played easily. Many of these bands also intended to shock mainstream society, rejecting the "peace and love" image of the prior musical rebellion of the 1960s which had degenerated, punks thought, into mellow disco culture. Ramones drummer Tommy Ramone stated, "In its initial form, a lot of [1960s] stuff was innovative and exciting. Unfortunately, what happens is that people who could not hold a candle to the likes of Hendrix started noodling away. Soon you had endless solos that went nowhere. By 1973, I knew that what was needed was some pure, stripped down, no bad rock 'n' roll". While the Ramones were often regarded as the first punk band, they had many contemporaries from the same era in the New York scene. Artists like Patti Smith, The Heartbreakers, and Television played the same fast paced, stripped-down, style of rock, and often played shows along with the Ramones at burgeoning club CBGB's.

In 1976 the Ramones, along with British punk band the Sex Pistols, went on a tour of the United Kingdom. The tour was widely credited for inspiring the first wave of English punk bands such as The Clash, The Damned, and The Buzzcocks. In England, the music became a more violent and political form of expression, represented with the Sex Pistols first two singles "Anarchy in the U.K." and "God Save the Queen". Despite an airplay ban on the BBC, the records rose to the top chart position in the UK. Other bands, like the Clash, were less nihilistic, more overtly political and idealistic.

As the Sex Pistols toured America, they spread their music to the West Coast. Before, punk was mostly an East Coast phenomenon in the US, with scenes in New York and Washington D.C.. In the late 70s California punk bands such as the Dead Kennedys, X and Black Flag, gained greater exposure.


New Wave

Punk rock attracted devotees from the art and collegiate world and soon bands sporting a more literate, arty approach, such as the Talking Heads, and Devo began to infiltrate the punk scene; in some quarters the description New Wave began to be used to differentiate these less overtly punk bands.

If punk rock was a social and musical phenomenon, it garnered little in the way of record sales (small specialty labels such as Stiff Records had released much of the punk music to date) or American radio airplay, as the radio scene continued to be dominated by mainstream formats such as disco and album-oriented rock. Record executives, who had been mostly mystified by the punk movement, recognized the potential of the more accessible New Wave acts and began aggressively signing and marketing any band that could claim a remote connection to punk or New Wave. Many of these bands, such as The Cars and the Go-Go's were essentially pop bands dressed up in New Wave regalia; others, including the Police and the Pretenders managed to parlay the boost of the New Wave movement into long-lived and artistically lauded careers.

Between 1982 and 1985, influenced by Kraftwerk and Gary Numan, New Wave went in the direction of such New Romantics as Duran Duran, A Flock of Seagulls, Psychedelic Furs, Talk Talk and the Eurythmics, sometimes using the synthesizer to replace all other instruments. This period coincided with the rise of MTV and led to a great deal of exposure for this brand of synth-pop. Some rock bands reinvented themselves and profited too from MTV's airplay, for instance Golden Earring, who had a second round of success with "Twilight Zone", but in general the times of guitar-oriented rock were over. Although many "Greatest of New Wave" collections feature popular songs from this era, New Wave more properly refers to the earlier "skinny tie" rock bands such as the Knack or Blondie.

In the 1980s, popular rock diversified. This period also saw the New Wave of British Heavy Metal. The early part of the decade saw Eddie Van Halen achieve musical innovations in rock guitar, while vocalists David Lee Roth (of Van Halen) and Freddie Mercury (of Queen as he had been doing throughout the 1970s) raised the role of frontman to near performance art standards. Bono of U2 would continue this trend. Concurrently, pop-New Wave bands remained popular, with performers like Billy Idol and The Go-Go's gaining fame. American heartland rock gained a strong following, exemplified by Bruce Springsteen, Bob Seger, Donnie Iris, John (Cougar) Mellencamp and others. Led by the American folk singer-songwriter Paul Simon and the British former prog rock star Peter Gabriel, rock and roll fused with a variety of folk music styles from around the world; this fusion came to be known as "world music", and included fusions like aboriginal rock. Also, more extreme forms of rock music began to evolve; in the early eighties, the harsh and aggressive thrash metal attracted large underground audiences and a few bands, including Metallica and Megadeth, went on for mainstream success.


Glam metal (Hair metal)

One genre that was widely popular in the 1980s (c.1983) was glam metal. Taking influence from various artists such as Aerosmith, Guns N' Roses , Bon Jovi, Queen, Kiss, Alice Cooper, Twisted Sister, (all but Queen would eventually play glam metal at some point in the 80s), Sweet and the New York Dolls. The earliest glam metal bands to gain notability included: Mцtley Crьe, W.A.S.P. and Ratt. They became known for their debauched lifestyles, teased hair and use of make-up and clothing. Their songs were bombastic and often defiantly macho, with lyrics focused on sex, drinking, drugs, and the occult.

By the mid 1980s, a formula developed in which a glam metal band had two hits -- one a "power ballad" (slow-dance tempo, with soft verses and bombastic anthemic choruses), and the other a hard-rocking anthem. In 1987 a second wave of glam metal acts, sometimes referred to as sleaze rock, emerged including L.A. Guns and Faster Pussycat.


Instrumental rock

Instrumental rock was also popularised during this period with Joe Satriani's release of Surfing with the Alien. Many guitarists, feeling constrained by the style of music performed by their respective bands, began releasing solo albums that showcased their guitar skills. Guitarists such as George Lynch, Steve Vai, Tony MacAlpine, Yngwie Malmsteen and Steve Morse have all greatly contributed to the genre.


Alternative music and the indie movement

The term alternative music (also often known as alternative rock) was coined in the early 1980s to describe bands which didn't fit into the mainstream genres of the time. Bands dubbed "alternative" could be most any style not typically heard on the radio; however, most alternative bands were unified by their collective debt to punk. Important bands of the '80s alternative movement included R.E.M., Sonic Youth, the Smiths, Pixies, Hьsker Dь, the Cure, and countless others. Artists largely were confined to indie record labels, building an extensive underground music scene based around college radio, fanzines, touring, and word-of-mouth. Although these groups never generated spectacular album sales, they exerted a considerable influence on the generation of musicians who came of age in the 80s and ended up breaking through to mainstream success in the 1990s. Notable styles of alternative rock during the 80s include jangle pop, gothic rock, college rock, and indie rock. The next decade would see the success of grunge in the US and Britpop in the UK, bringing alternative rock into the mainstream.



By the 1980s, rock was dominated by slick and commercial glam metal, hair metal and arena rock artists. MTV had arrived and promoted this excessive focus on image and style. Disaffected by this, in the mid-1980s, bands in Washington state (particularly in the Seattle area) formed a new style of rock music which sharply contrasted the mainstream rock of the time.

The developing genre came to be known as "grunge", a term meaning "dirt" or "filth". The term was perhaps seen as appropriate due to the dirty sound of the music and the unkempt appearance of most musicians. Grunge fused elements of hardcore punk and heavy metal into a single sound, and made heavy use of guitar distortion, fuzz and feedback. The lyrics were typically apathetic and angst-filled, and often concerned themes such as social alienation and entrapment. Although it was also known for its dark humour and parodies of commercial rock.

Bands such as Green River, Soundgarden, the Melvins and Skin Yard pioneered the genre, with Mudhoney becoming the most successful by the end of the decade. However grunge remained largely a local phenomenon until 1991, when Nirvana's album Nevermind broke into the mainstream. Pearl Jam also contributed to this with their album Ten. Both bands were more melodic than their predecessors and were instant sensations worldwide, but they refused to buy in to corporate promotion and marketing mechanisms. During 1991 and 1992, other grunge bands such as Soundgarden, Alice in Chains and Candlebox gained a wider audience. Commercial rock and metal faded almost completely from the mainstream.

While grunge itself can be seen as somewhat limited in range, its influence was felt across many geographic and musical boundaries; many artists who were similarly disaffected with commercial rock music suddenly found record companies and audiences willing to listen, and dozens of disparate acts positioned themselves as alternatives to mainstream music; thus alternative rock emerged from the underground. This helped pave the way for bands such as the Smashing Pumpkins and Stone Temple Pilots who were initially stereotyped as grunge but later enjoyed commercial and critical success independent of the genre.

In early April 1994, grunge took a sudden shift in popularity with the death of Nirvana's frontman Kurt Cobain. Although grunge bands continued to release albums, the genre began to decline in popularity and, by the end of the decade, many grunge bands had split up, stopped touring, or had changed their musical direction.



While America was full of grunge, post-grunge, and hip hop, Britain launched a 1960s revival in the mid-90s, often called Britpop, with bands like Suede, Oasis, Supergrass, The Verve, Radiohead, Pulp and Blur. These bands drew on myriad styles from the 80s British rock underground, including twee pop, shoegazing and space rock as well as traditional British guitar influences like the Beatles and glam rock. For a time, the Oasis-Blur rivalry was similar to the Beatles-Rolling Stones rivalry, or the Nirvana-Pearl Jam rivalry in America. While bands like Blur tended to follow on from the Small Faces and The Kinks, Oasis mixed the attitude of the Rolling Stones with the melody of the Beatles. The Verve and Radiohead took inspiration from performers like Elvis Costello, Pink Floyd and R.E.M. with their progressive rock music, manifested in Radiohead's most famous album, OK Computer. These bands became very successful, and for a time Oasis was given the title "the biggest band in the world" thanks to an album selling some 19 million copies worldwide but slowed down after band breakups, publicity disasters in the United States and slightly less popular support. The Verve disbanded after on-going turmoil in the band. Radiohead has gone on to make more experimental albums, thus losing some of their fan base.


Nu metal and Rapcore

In the early 90s bands like Red Hot Chili Peppers, Rage Against the Machine, 311, Cyprus Hill and later Limp Bizkit and Korn had brought a fresh sound by combining rap and rock with much success. Later in the decade this style, which contained a mix of grunge, metal, and hip-hop, became known as rapcore and spawned a wave of successful bands like Linkin Park and P.O.D.. Many of these bands also considered themselves a part of the similar genre nu metal.


Garage rock revival

After existing in the musical underground, garage rock saw a resurgence of popularity with the garage rock revival. Bands like The White Stripes, The Strokes, Jet, The Vines, and The Hives all released successful singles and albums. This wave is also sometimes referred to as back-to-basics rock because of its raw sound.



In the early 2000s, emo music began to gain mainstream popularity with success of bands such as Jimmy Eat World, Dashboard Confessional, and Fall Out Boy. There is a lot of debate over which bands are emo and the term can be used to describe everything from Weezer to My Chemical Romance. The lyrics in emo songs are usually about depression and troubled relationships.



Often dubbed new-nu-metal by many metal fans, metalcore evolved way back in the early 90's but only really came to prominence in the early 21st century with the video play of bands such as Killswitch Engage, Trivium and Bullet for My Valentine on TV music channels. Metalcore came about from combining hardcore and post-hardcore punk with heavy metal.


Doom Metal

Doom metal is a form of heavy metal music that typically uses very slow tempos, low-tuned guitars and a much 'thicker' or 'heavier' sound than other metal genres. Both the music and the lyrics intend to evoke a sense of despair, dread, and impending doom.

The genre is strongly influenced by the early work of Black Sabbath, who formed a prototype for doom metal with songs such as "Black Sabbath" and "Into the Void". During the first half of the 1980s, a number of bands from England (Pagan Altar, Witchfinder General) and the United States (Pentagram, Saint Vitus, Trouble) defined doom metal as a distinct genre.


The electric guitar, bass guitar and drum kit are the most common instruments used to play doom metal, although keyboards are occasionally used. Guitarists and bassists typically tune their instruments to very low notes and make a greater use of distortion. This produces a very 'thick' or 'heavy' guitar tone, which is one of the defining characteristics of the genre. Another defining characteristic is the consistent focus on slow tempos.


Traditional doom metal vocalists favour clean vocals, which are often performed with a sense of despair, desperation or pain. Epic doom vocalists usually sing in an operatic style. Doom bands with extreme metal influence typically favour growled or screamed vocals, while sludge doom vocalists usually employ shouted or strained singing.

Lyrical themes

Lyrics in doom metal play a very important role. Often, they are pessimistic in nature, and include themes such as: suffering, depression, fear, grief, death and anger. While some bands write lyrics in introspective and personal ways, others convey their themes using symbolism – which may be inspired by various types of literature.

Some doom metal bands use religious themes in their music, perhaps more so than other heavy metal bands.[citation needed] Trouble, one of the genre's pioneers, were among the first to incorporate Christian imagery. Others have incorporated occult and pagan imagery. For many bands, the use of religious themes is for aesthetic and symbolic purposes only.

Additionally, some doom bands write lyrics about drugs or drug addiction. This is most common among stoner doom bands, who often describe hallucinogenic or psychedelic experience

Origins (1970s)

Doom metal is among the oldest forms of heavy metal, rooted in the music of early Black Sabbath, one of the first heavy metal bands. Black Sabbath's music is itself stylistically rooted in blues, but with the deliberately doomy and loud guitar playing of Tony Iommi (who often used the tritone, or "diabolus in musica", in his playing and composition), and the then-uncommon dark and pessimistic lyrics and atmosphere, they set the standards of early heavy metal and inspired various doom metal bands to come. In the early 1970s both Black Sabbath and the American band Pentagram (also as side band Bedemon) composed and performed this heavy and dark music, which would in the 1980s begin to be known and referred to as doom metal by subsequent musicians, critics and fans.

Development (1980s)

During the early-mid 1980s, bands from England and the United States contributed much to the formation of doom metal as a distinct genre. In 1982, English pioneers Pagan Altar and Witchfinder General released their debut albums; Volume 1 and Death Penalty respectively. During 1984 and 1985, three American pioneers also released their debuts; Saint Vitus released their eponymous album, Trouble released Psalm 9 and Pentagram released Relentless. The Swedish Candlemass would also prove influential with their first record Epicus Doomicus Metallicus in 1986 (and prior to that, as Nemesis and the 1984 album Day of Retribution), from which the genre takes its name.

During the 1980s, doom metal was deeply underground and gathered only small circles of cult-following fans.[citation needed] In the 1980s, metal was dominated by the faster metal subgenres speed and thrash, and commercially by glam metal. Slower, heavier and pessimistic in its nature, doom metal bands did not receive much attention even among some die-hard metal fans of that time

Stylistic divisions

At the beginning of the 1990s, experimentation within doom metal became widespread, and the genre diversified as a result. Today, bands who continue the style of the genre's pioneers are often referred to as traditional doom metal.

Epic doom

Epic doom is a style of doom metal that is characterized primarily by its vocal style; vocalists typically employ clean, operatic and choral singing. Lyrics and imagery are typically inspired by fantasy or mythology, while the drumming is performed in a bombastic fashion. However, distinguishing epic doom from traditional doom may be difficult. Examples of prominent epic doom bands include Candlemass, Solitude Aeturnus, Solstice and Doomsword.

Stoner doom

Stoner doom, stoner metal and psychedelic doom describes doom metal that incorporates psychedelic elements, to varying degrees. Stoner doom is often bass-heavy and makes much use of guitar/bass effects such as fuzz, phaser or flanger. Stoner doom could be viewed as the heavier and slower form of stoner rock, as the two styles emerged simultaneously. It was pioneered in the early–mid 1990s by bands such as Kyuss, Sleep, Acid King, Electric Wizard and Sons of Otis.

Sludge doom

Sludge doom (also known as sludge metal) is a style that combines doom metal and hardcore punk. Many sludge bands compose slow and heavy songs that contain brief hardcore passages. However, some bands emphasise fast tempos throughout their music. The string instruments are heavily distorted and are often played with large amounts of feedback to produce an abrasive, sludgy sound. Drumming is often performed in typical doom metal fashion, but drummers may employ hardcore d-beat or double-kick drumming during faster passages. Vocals are usually shouted or screamed, and lyrics often focus on suffering, drug abuse, politics and anger towards society. The style was pioneered in the early 1990s by bands such as Eyehategod, Crowbar, Buzzov*en, Acid Bath and Grief.

Funeral doom

Funeral doom is a style of doom metal that takes influence from both the death/doom and dark ambient genres. It is played at a very slow tempo and places an emphasis on evoking a sense of emptiness and despair. Typically, electric guitars are heavily distorted and keyboards or synthesizers are used to create a "dreamlike" atmosphere. Vocals consist of mournful chants or growls and are often in the background. Funeral doom was pioneered by Thergothon (Finland), Skepticism (Finland), Funeral (Norway), Nortt (Denmark) and Mordor (Switzerland).

Drone doom

Drone doom (also known as drone metal) is a style of doom metal that is largely defined by drones; notes or chords that are sustained and repeated throughout a piece of music. Typically, the electric guitar is performed with large amounts of reverb and feedback while vocals, if present, are usually growled or screamed. Songs are often very long and lack beat or rhythm in the traditional sense. Drone doom is generally influenced by drone music, noise music and minimalist music. The style emerged in the early 1990s and was pioneered by Earth, Boris, and Sunn.

Death doom

Death doom (also known as doom death) is a style that combines the slow tempos and pessimistic atmosphere of doom metal with the deep growling vocals and double-kick drumming of death metal. The style emerged during the late 1980s and gained a certain amount of popularity during the 1990s. It was pioneered by bands such as Winter, Asphyx, Disembowelment, Paradise Lost, Autopsy and My Dying Bride. Death doom subsequently gave rise to the gothic metal genre.

Black doom

Black doom (also known as blackened doom metal) is a style that combines elements of black metal and doom metal. Typically, vocals are in the form of high-pitched shrieks and guitars are played with much distortion, which is common in black metal. But the music is played at a slow tempo with a much 'thicker' guitar sound, which is common in doom metal. Lyrics often involve themes of nature, nihilism and depression. The early work of Bethlehem (Germany) and Barathrum (Finland) is generally regarded as the foundation of this style. Pure blackened doom bands are fairly rare, but Dolorian (Finland), Unholy (Finland), Ajattara (Finland), Forgotten Tomb (Italy), Nortt (Denmark) and Gallhammer (Japan) have performed in this style.


Gothic metal

Gothic metal or goth metal is a subgenre of heavy metal music. It combines the aggression of heavy metal with the dark melancholy of gothic rock. The genre originated during the early 1990s in Europe as an outgrowth of death/doom, a fusion of death metal and doom metal. The music of gothic metal is diverse with bands known to adopt the gothic approach to different styles of heavy metal music. Lyrics are generally melodramatic and mournful with inspiration from gothic fiction as well as personal experiences.

Pioneers of gothic metal include Paradise Lost, My Dying Bride and Anathema, all from the north of England. Other pioneers from the first half of the 1990s include Type O Negative from the United States, Tiamat from Sweden, and The Gathering from the Netherlands. Norwegian band Theatre of Tragedy developed the "beauty and the beast" aesthetic of combining aggressive male vocals with clean female vocals, a contrast that has since been adopted by many gothic metal groups. During the mid-1990s, Moonspell, Theatres des Vampires and Cradle of Filth brought the gothic approach to black metal. By the end of the decade, a symphonic metal variant of gothic metal had been developed by Tristania and Within Temptation.

In the 21st century, gothic metal has moved towards the mainstream in Europe, particularly in Finland where groups such as The 69 Eyes, Entwine, HIM, Lullacry, Poisonblack and Sentenced have released hit singles or chart-topping albums. In the US, however, only a few bands such as Lacuna Coil have found commercial success.


Gothic is a term that is "difficult to pin down". Some commentators have suggested that there is an underlying Goth ideology, mindset or a set of common values but there is "little agreement about precisely what this might involve". The author Gavin Baddeley describes the gothic aesthetic in the following way.“ Gothic is sophisticated barbarism. It is a passion for life draped in the symbolism of death. It is a cynical love of sentiment. It is a marriage of extremes such as sex and death. It uses darkness to illuminate. It believes duty is vain, and vanity to be a duty. It is the compulsion to do the wrong thing for all the right reasons. It is a yearning nostalgia for the black days of a past that never was. It denies orthodox reality and puts its faith in the imaginary. It is the unholy, the uncanny, the unnatural.

The term gothic entered heavy metal music with the release of Paradise Lost's Gothic album in 1991. Since then, fans have often been at odds with one another as to "which bands are, or most definitely are not, authentically Gothic". Some musicians have disputed the gothic label associated with their bands, including Rozz Williams of Christian Death and Andrew Eldritch of The Sisters of Mercy. In the gothic metal subgenre, members from such groups as After Forever, HIM and Nightwish have similarly downplayed or dismissed the gothic label from their music.


The music of gothic metal is generally characterised by its dark atmosphere. The adjective "dark" is commonly used to describe gothic music in general while other terms that are less frequently used include deep, depressing, romantic, passionate and intense. Gothic metal has also been described as "a combination of the darkness and melancholy of goth rock with heavy metal". Allmusic defines the genre as a fusion of "the bleak, icy atmospherics of goth rock with the loud guitars and aggression of heavy metal" and further notes that "true goth metal is always directly influenced by goth rock - ethereal synths and spooky textures are just as important as guitar riffs, if not moreso".

Gothic metal is a varied genre with bands pursuing many different directions, from "slow and crushing variations" to "orchestral and bombastic". The doom metal background of early pioneers like Paradise Lost and My Dying Bride has been taken up by groups like Artrosis, Ava Inferi and Draconian. The black metal approach of Cradle of Filth, Theatres des Vampires and early Moonspell can be found in such subsequent bands as Graveworm, Drastique and Samsas Traum while the symphonic metal approach of Tristania and Within Temptation can be found in other groups like the Epica and After Forever. Other variations include the death metal of Trail of Tears , the folk metal of Midnattsol and the alternative metal of Katatonia.


Lead female vocalists are a common presence in the gothic metal genre. One of the earliest was Anneke van Giersbergen of The Gathering, depicted above.

There is also a diverse range of vocal styles in gothic metal. Male singers in the genre range from the guttural growls and black metal shrieks of Dani Filth and Morten Veland to the clean counter-tenor vocals of Østen Bergøy[20] and the bass range of Peter Steele. For the female singers, the different vocal styles includes the screams and growls of Cadaveria, the "poppy" vocals of Tanja Lainio from Lullacry and the operatic soprano style of Vibeke Stene from Tristania. There are more female singers in gothic metal than there are in any other heavy metal subgenres but female vocals are neither necessary nor synonymous with the genre. Liv Kristine of Theatre of Tragedy and Leaves' Eyes notes that the gothic tag is often misinterpreted and points out that "not every band with female vocals is a gothic band". The genre is also known to attract more female fans relative to other subgenres of heavy metal music.


The lyrics of gothic metal are known to be "epic and melodramatic". For the three English bands that helped to pioneer the genre, their sorrowful and depressive lyrics reflect their background in doom metal. The music of My Dying Bride has been noted as "dripping with treachery and pain" from a "lyrical fascination with deceit and transgressions of every variety". Lyrics that focus on suicide and the meaningless of life can be found in Anathema while Paradise Lost too has "never lost their depressive edge".

The Italian gothic black metal band Theatres des Vampires manifests a deep interest in the vampire myth, a common staple of gothic horror fiction.

Gothic fiction, a literary genre that blends horror and romance, has been a source of inspiration for the lyrics of many gothic metal bands like Cadaveria, Cradle of Filth, Moonspell, Theatres des Vampires and Xandria. Critic Eduardo Rivadavia of Allmusic identifies drama and mournful beauty as requisite elements of the genre. For My Dying Bride, the subjects of "death and misery and lost love and romance" has been approached repeatedly from different angles. The common gothic theme of lost love is a subject that has been tackled by such gothic metal bands as Theatre of Tragedy and Leaves' Eyes.

Lyrics based on personal experiences is another common feature of many gothic metal bands such as Anathema, Elis, Tiamat, Midnattsol and The Old Dead Tree. Graveworm moved away from fantasy stories in favor of personal lyrics after finding them more suitable for their style of music. The lyrics of fellow Italians Lacuna Coil also do not feature any "fantasy stuff or something that you cannot find in reality" as their co-vocalist Cristina Scabbia finds it desirable that people can relate themselves to her band's lyrics. Similarly, the band Lullacry features lyrics on the subjects of "love, hate, passion and pain" because a person "can easily connect to a song" with lyrics "about human relationships".


Black metal

Black metal is an extreme subgenre of heavy metal. It often employs fast tempos, shrieked vocals, highly distorted guitars played with tremolo picking, double-kick drumming, and unconventional song structure.

During the 1980s, certain thrash metal bands established a prototype for black metal. This so-called "first wave" included bands such as Venom, Bathory, Hellhammer and Celtic Frost. A "second wave" emerged in the early 1990s, which consisted primarily of Norwegian bands such as Mayhem, Burzum, Darkthrone, Immortal and Emperor. This scene developed the black metal style into a distinct genre.

Black metal has been met with considerable hostility from mainstream culture, mainly due to the misanthropic and anti-Christian ideology of many artists. Additionally, some musicians have been associated with church burnings, murder or National Socialism. For these reasons and others, black metal is often viewed as an underground form of music.


Black metal guitarists usually favour high-treble guitar tones and abundant distortion. Typically, the guitar is played with much usage of fast tremolo picking. When composing music, guitarists often use scales, intervals and chord progressions that produce the most dissonant, fearful and ominous sounds. Additionally, guitar solos and low guitar tunings are a rarity in black metal.

The bass guitar is rarely used to perform independent melodies. It is not uncommon for the bass guitar to be inaudible or to homophonically follow the bass lines of the electric guitar. Typically, drumming is fast-paced and performed using double-bass and/or blast beat techniques; however, it is not unusual for drummers to employ more simplistic techniques.

Black metal compositions commonly deviate from conventional song structure and are often devoid of clear verse-chorus sections. Instead, many black metal songs contain extended and repetitive instrumental sections.

Vocals and lyrics

Traditional black metal vocals are in the form of high-pitched shrieks, screams and snarls. This vocal style sharply contrasts with the low-pitched growls of death metal. The majority of black metal vocalists are male, although there are a few notable exceptions – for example Cadaveria and Astarte.

The most common and founding lyrical theme is opposition to Christianity and other organized religions (described by some as Right-Hand Path religions). As part of this, many artists write lyrics that could be seen to promote atheism, antitheism, paganism and Satanism. Other themes that are commonly explored include depression, nihilism, misanthropy and death. However, some black metal artists write lyrics that are inspired by winter, nature, mythology, folklore and fantasy narratives.


Death metal

Death metal is an extreme subgenre of heavy metal. It typically employs moderate tempos, heavily distorted guitars, deep growling vocals, blast beat drumming, and complex song structures with multiple tempo changes.

Building off the speed and complexity of thrash metal, death metal emerged during the mid 1980s. It was mainly inspired by thrash metal acts like Slayer, Kreator and Celtic Frost. Along with the band Death and its frontman Chuck Schuldiner (who is often referred to as "the father of death metal"), bands like Possessed and Morbid Angel are often considered pioneers of the genre. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, death metal gained more media attention as popular record labels like Earache Records and Roadrunner Records began to sign death metal bands at a rapid rate. Since then, death metal has diversified, spawning a rich variety of subgenres.


The setup most frequently used in death metal is two electric guitars, a bass guitar, a vocalist and a drum kit almost universally using two bass drums or a double bass drum pedal. Although this is the standard setup, bands have been known to incorporate other instruments such as electronic keyboards.

The genre is often identified by fast, highly distorted and downtuned guitars, played with techniques such as palm muting and tremolo picking. The percussion is usually fast and dynamic; blast beats, double bass and exceedingly fast drum patterns frequently add to the ferocity of the genre.

Death metal is known for its abrupt tempo, key, and time signature changes, as well as fast and complex guitar and drumwork. Death metal may include chromatic chord progressions and a varied song structure, rarely employing the standard verse-chorus arrangement. These compositions tend to emphasize an ongoing development of themes and motifs.

Vocals and lyrics

Death metal vocals are often guttural roars, grunts, snarls, and low gurgles colloquially called death grunts or death growls. The style is sometimes referred to as Cookie Monster vocals, tongue-in-cheek, because of the similarity with the popular Sesame Street character of the same name. Although often criticized, death growls serve the aesthetic purpose of matching death metal's violent or bleak lyrical content.

Death metal's lyrical themes often invoke Z-grade slasher and splatter movie violence, but may also extend to topics like Satanism, anti-religion, Occultism, mysticism, philosophy and social commentary. However, few practice mysticism and most seem to use it solely as metaphorology for their works. Although violence may be explored in various other genres as well, death metal elaborates on the details of extreme acts, including mutilation, dissection, torture, rape and necrophilia. Sociologist Keith Kahn-Harris (author of Extreme Metal: Music and Culture on the Edge) commented this may be attributed to a "fascination" with the human body all people share to some degree, a "primal desire", and although the genre often glamorizes violence and obscurities, there is equally as much fear and disgust amid the exploration. Heavy metal author Gavin Baddeley also stated there does seem to be a connection between "how acquainted one is with their own mortality" and "how much they crave images of death and violence" via the media. Additionally, contributing artists to the genre often defend death metal as little more than an extreme form of art and entertainment, similar to horror films in the motion picture industry. This rationalization has brought such musicians under fire from activists internationally, who claim that this is often lost on a large number of adolescents, who are left with the glamorization of such violence without social context or awareness of why such imagery is stimulating.

According to Alex Webster, bassist of Cannibal Corpse, "The gory lyrics are probably not, as much as people say, [what's keeping us] from being mainstream. Like, 'Death metal would never go into the mainstream because the lyrics are too gory?' I think it's really the music, because violent entertainment is totally mainstream."


Progressive metal

Progressive metal (sometimes shortened to prog metal) is a fusion genre: a mixture of progressive rock and heavy metal. Progressive metal blends the powerful, guitar-driven sound of metal with the complex compositional structures, odd time signatures, and intricate instrumental playing of progressive rock. Some progressive metal bands are also influenced by jazz fusion and classical music. Like progressive rock songs, progressive metal songs are usually much longer than standard metal songs, and they are often thematically linked in concept albums. As a result, progressive metal is rarely heard on mainstream radio and video programs.


The origins of progressive metal can be traced back to progressive rock bands from the late 1960s and early to mid-1970s such as Yes, Pink Floyd, Emerson, Lake and Palmer, Jethro Tull, King Crimson, Genesis, Gentle Giant, Focus, Renaissance, The Alan Parsons Project, early Queen, Kansas, Atomic Rooster, Uriah Heep and Rush. The latter five also often blended metal elements into their music. However, progressive metal did not develop into a genre of its own until the mid-1980s. Bands such as Fates Warning, Queensrÿche and Dream Theater took elements of these progressive rock groups – primarily the instrumentation and compositional structure of songs – and merged them with heavy metal styles associated with early Metallica, Megadeth and Iron Maiden. The result could be described as a progressive rock mentality with heavy metal sounds.

The three flagship bands for prog metal of the time each had somewhat different sounds. Queensryche had by far the most melodic sound of the three and was ultimately the most commercially successful. Dream Theater drew most from traditional prog rock and also built much of their earlier career on the band members' instrumental skills, though later in their career they would abandon much of their more obvious prog rock influences (while retaining their prog complexity, however) in favor of a more edgy, modern prog metal sound. Fates Warning were the most aggressive and heavy and arguably had the most in common with the thrash and extreme metal scenes of the time, which led them to be the least accessible of the three bands, though they also had their own brief taste of commercial success with their Parallels album.

Progressive metal received mainstream exposure in the early 1990s when Queensrÿche's "Silent Lucidity" (from 1990's Empire) became a radio and MTV hit. It was not a typical progressive metal song, but its popularity increased the profile of other progressive metal bands. In 1993, Dream Theater's "Pull Me Under" (from 1992's Images and Words) became popular on radio and MTV. In the 1990s, bands such as Pain of Salvation, Tool, Opeth, Threshold, Symphony X and the project Ayreon developed their own signature sounds.

Pain of Salvation drew heavily on more obscure 1970s prog acts. Ayreon stayed with the traditional Prog Metal themes, but mixed them with many other influences, rock opera and ambient among more prominent ones. Symphony X married progressive elements to power metal and classical music. Steve Vai's former singer and heavy metal band Strapping Young Lad's singer and guitarist Devin Townsend combined elements of post metal and ambient with traditional progressive metal on his first two solo albums Ocean Machine: Biomech and Infinity. Opeth and Between the Buried and Me combined their prog influence with death metal. Another influence on prog metal were "technical metal" bands, such as Watchtower, Atheist, and Cynic, who utilized complex song structures and technical instrumental playing.

Bands like Sun Caged, Dominici, and Circus Maximus are influenced by traditional progressive metal and several of the first wave of 1990s bands. Bands such as Dark Suns, Disillusion, and Conscience are influenced by emotional progressive metal bands like Opeth, Pain of Salvation, Green Carnation, and Anathema. Sweden's Tiamat have also been influential in the progressive metal genre, especially on their 1994's album Wildhoney.


Progressive metal can be broken down into countless sub-genres corresponding to certain other styles of music that have influenced progressive metal groups. For example, two bands that are commonly identified as progressive metal, King's X and Opeth, are at opposite ends of the sonic spectrum to one another. King's X are greatly influenced by softer mainstream rock and, in fact, contributed to the growth of grunge, influencing bands like Pearl Jam, whose bassist Jeff Ament once said, "King's X invented grunge." Opeth's growling vocals and heavy guitars (liberally intermixed with Gothic-evocative acoustic passages) often see them cited as progressive death metal, yet their front man Mikael Åkerfeldt refers to Yes and Camel as major influences in the style of their music.

Classical and symphonic music have also had a significant impact on sections of the progressive metal genre, with artists like Devin Townsend, Symphony X and Shadow Gallery fusing traditional progressive metal with a complexity and grandeur usually found in classical compositions. Similarly, bands such as Dream Theater, Planet X and Dream Theater side project Liquid Tension Experiment have a jazz influence, with extended solo sections that often feature "trading solos". Cynic, Atheist, Opeth, Pestilence, Between The Buried And Me, and Meshuggah also blended jazz/fusion with death metal. Devin Townsend draws on more Ambient influences in the atmosphere of his music. Progressive metal is also often linked with power metal, hence the ProgPower music festival. Progressive metal has also overlapped thrash metal - most famously perhaps with Dark Angel's swansong album Time Does Not Heal, which was famous for its sticker that said "9 songs, 67 minutes, 246 riffs." The band Watchtower, who released their first album in 1985, blended the modern thrash metal sound with heavy progressive influences, and even Megadeth were often and still are often associated with progressive metal, as Dave Mustaine even once claimed that the band was billed as "jazz metal" in the early '80s.

Recently, with a new wave of popularity in shred guitar, the previously shunned idea of "technical metal" has become increasingly prevalent and popular in the metal scene. This has led to a resurgence of popularity for more traditional progressive metal bands like Dream Theater and Symphony X, and also has led to the grouping of the "prog metal" scene bands that do not necessarily play in the traditional "prog metal" style such as Nevermore, and Into Eternity. These bands are, rightly or wrongly, often labeled progressive metal, as they do play relatively complex and technical metal music that cannot be entirely associated with other metal subgenres. Technical death metal bands like Necrophagist are also often associated with the same subculture of heavy metal fans as well (referred to often as "shred metalheads").

Differences with avant-garde metal

Although progressive metal and avant-garde metal both favor experimentation and non-standard ideas, there are rather large differences between the two genres. The experimentation of progressive metal lies mostly in playing complex rhythms and song structures with traditional instruments. For avant-garde metal, most of the experimentation is in the use of unusual sounds and instruments. Progressive metal also puts a greater emphasis on technicality and theoretical complexity (e.g., odd time signatures, complex song forms, jazz fusion influences), while avant-garde metal is more unorthodox and tends to question musical conventions.



Grindcore, often shortened to grind, is an extreme music genre that emerged during the mid–1980s. It draws inspiration from some of the most abrasive music genres – including death metal, industrial music, noise and the more extreme varieties of hardcore punk.

Grindcore is characterized by heavily distorted, down-tuned guitars, high speed tempo, blast beats, and vocals which consist of growls and high-pitched screams. Early groups like Siege and Napalm Death are accredited for laying the groundwork for the style. It is most prevalent today in North America and Europe, with popular contributors such as Brutal Truth and Nasum. Lyrical themes range from a primary focus on social and political concerns, to gorey subject matter and black humor.

An infamous trait of grindcore is the "microsong". Several bands have produced songs that last only seconds in length. British band Napalm Death holds the Guiness World Record for shortest song ever recorded with the two-second "You Suffer" (1987). Many bands record simple phrases that may be rhymically sprawled out across an instrumental lasting only a couple bars in length. The comical band Anal Cunt and concept band Total Fucking Destruction are also prime examples.

A variety of "microgenres" have subsequently emerged, often used to label bands according to a few alternative traits that deviate from standard grindcore, including deathgrind/goregrind, focused on horror themes, and pornogrind, fixated on pornographic lyrical themes. Other offshoots include noisegrind (especially raw and chaotic) and electrogrind (incorporating electronic elements). Although an influential phenomenon on hardcore punk and other popular genres, grindcore itself remains an underground form of music.


Grindcore relies on standard heavy metal instrumentation: electric guitar, bass and drums. However, grindcore alters the usual practices of metal or rock music with regard to song structure and tone. The vocal style is "ranging from high-pitched shrieks to low, throat-shredding growls and barks." In some cases, lyrics may not even exist. Vocals may be used as merely an added sound effect, a common practice with bands such as the experimental Naked City.

A characteristic of some grindcore songs is the "microsong", lasting only a few seconds. In 2001, the Guinness Book of World Records awarded Brutal Truth the record for "Shortest Music Video" for 1994's "Collateral Damage" (the song lasts four seconds). In 2007, the video for the Napalm Death song "You Suffer" set a new "Shortest Music Video" record: 1.3 seconds. Along with the microsong, it is characteristic of early grindcore to have diminutive song lengths. Such is the example of Carcass' Reek of Putrefaction (1988), where the song span averages about 1 minute and 48 seconds.

Many grindcore groups experiment with down-tuned guitars. While the vinyl A-side of Napalm Death's debut, 1987's Scum, is set to standard tuning, on side B, the guitars are tuned down 2½ steps. Their second album and 1989's EP were tuned to C♯. Harmony Corruption, their third release, was tuned up to a D. Bolt Thrower went further, dropping 3½ steps down (A).

The blast beat is a drum beat characteristic of grindcore in all its forms, although its usage predates the genre itself. In Adam MacGregor's definition, "the blast-beat generally comprises a repeated, sixteenth-note figure played at a very fast tempo, and divided uniformly among the kick drum, snare and ride, crash, or hi-hat cymbal." Blast beats have been described as "maniacal percussive explosions, less about rhythm per se than sheer sonic violence." Napalm Death coined the term, though this style of drumming had previously been practiced by others. Daniel Ekeroth argues that the blast beat was first performed by the Swedish D-beat group Asocial on their 1982 demo. D.R.I. ("No Sense"), Sepultura ("Antichrist"), S.O.D. ("Milk"), Sarcófago ("Satanas"), and Repulsion also included the technique prior to Napalm Death's emergence.

Lyrical themes

Grindcore lyrics are typically provocative. A number of grindcore musicians are committed to political and ethical causes. For example, Napalm Death's songs address a variety of anarchist concerns, in the tradition of anarcho-punk. These themes include anti-racism, feminism, anti-militarism, and anti-capitalism. Other grindcore groups, such as Cattle Decapitation and Carcass, have expressed disgust with human behavior, animal abuse, and are, in some cases, vegetarians. Carcass' work in particular is often identified as the origin of the goregrind style, which is devoted to "bodily" themes. Groups that shift their bodily focus to sexual matters, such as Gut and the Meat Shits, are sometimes referred to as pornogrind. Seth Putnam's lyrics are notorious for their black comedy, while The Locust tend toward satirical collage, indebted to William S. Burroughs' cut-up method.



Post-rock is a genre of alternative rock characterized by the use of musical instruments commonly associated with rock music, but using rhythms, harmonies, melodies, timbre, and chord progressions that are not usually found in rock tradition. It is the use of 'rock instrumentation' for non-rock purposes. Practitioners of the genre's style typically produce instrumental music.

As with many musical genres, the term is arguably inadequate as a concise descriptor: for example, Don Caballero and Tortoise were among the more prominent bands of the 1990s described as post-rock, but the two bands' music has very little in common besides the fact that they are both instrumental and centered on guitars and drums. As such, the term has been the subject of backlash from listeners and artists alike.

Although firmly rooted in the indie or underground scene of the 1980s and '90s, post-rock's style often bears little resemblance musically to that of indie rock.

Musical characteristics

The post-rock sound incorporates characteristics from a variety of musical genres, including ambient, jazz, electronica, and experimental. The traditional method of power chords is replaced with timbre and texture for guitar-play while the song and voice is abandoned by its ambience. The rebellious overtones of rock as we remember it is no longer the theme for post-rock groups. In fact, utilizing dub reggae, hip hop, and rave, post-rock manages to create an androgynous and softer means of subversion. The clubs were also a response to the emergence of a new post-rock vibe where musicians escaped musical genre labels and traded ideas. Early post-rock groups also often exhibited strong influence from the krautrock of the '70s, particularly borrowing elements of "motorik", the characteristic krautrock rhythm.

Post-rock compositions often make use of repetition of musical motifs and subtle changes with an extremely wide range of dynamics. In some respects, this is similar to the music of Steve Reich, Philip Glass, and Brian Eno, pioneers of minimalism. Typically, post-rock pieces are lengthy and instrumental, containing repetitive build-ups of timbre, dynamics and texture.

Vocals are often omitted from post-rock; however, this does not necessarily mean they are absent entirely. When vocals are included, the use is typically non-traditional: some post-rock bands employ vocals as purely instrumental efforts and incidental to the sound, rather than a more traditional use where "clean", easily-interpretable vocals are important for poetic and lyrical meaning. When present, post-rock vocals are often soft or droning and are typically infrequent or present in irregular intervals. Sigur Rós, a band known for their distinctive vocals, fabricated a language that critics call "Hopelandic" (Vonlenska in icelandic, a term even used by the band), which has been described by the band as "a form of gibberish vocals that fits to the music and acts as another instrument."

However, in lieu of typical rock structures in the vein of "verse-chorus-verse", post-rock groups generally make greater use of soundscapes. As Simon Reynolds states in his "Post-Rock" from Audio Culture, "A band's journey through rock to post-rock usually involves a trajectory from narrative lyrics to stream-of-consciousness to voice-as-texture to purely instrumental music." Reynolds' conclusion defines the sporadic progression from rock, with its field of sound and lyrics to post-rock, where samplings are stretched and looped.

Some bands, such as Rachel's and Clogs, combine post-rock with classical music, while others such as Godspeed You! Black Emperor and Fly Pan Am are so far removed from popular music in their sparseness of arrangement and use of repetition, that they are frequently compared to minimalism.

Wider experimentation and blending of other genres have recently taken hold in the post-rock scene. Isis, Russian Circles and Pelican have fused metal with post-rock styles. The resulting sound has been termed post-metal. More recently, Sludge metal has grown and evolved to include (and in some cases fuse completely with) some elements of post-rock. This second wave of sludge metal has been pioneered by bands such as Giant Squid and Battle of Mice. This new sound is often seen on the label of Neurot Recordings. Similarly, some have described the sound of bands such as Wolves in the Throne Room and Altar of Plagues as a fusion of post-rock and black metal, or at least a type of the latter which incorporates elements of the former. In some cases, this sort of experimentation and blending has gone beyond the fusion of post-rock with a single genre, as in the case of post-metal, in favor of an even wider embrace of disparate musical influences.

Recent efforts by bands like Beirut, Ratatat, and From Monument to Masses liberally mine from a broad range of musical ideas, including synthpop, eastern European, electronic music, folk, hip hop, indie rock, disco, Afro-Caribbean music, psychedelic rock, classic rock, and math rock. Sometimes this influence can be seen in the chosen instrumentation, as with Ratatat's extensive use of synthesizers and sequencers. At other times it can be seen in a band's overall approach to music making, as with From Monument To Masses incorporating hip hop and dub music production techniques including sampling, loops, and even turntable scratching.


~Origins|||1890s-1910s|||1920s and 1930s|||Swing|||European Jazz|||1940s and 1950s|||Hard Bop|||Free jazz|||Cool jazz|||Latin jazz~

Jazz is an original American musical art form which originated around the beginning of the 20th century in African American communities in the Southern United States out of a confluence of African and European music traditions. The use of blue notes, call-and-response, improvisation, polyrhythms, syncopation and the swung note of ragtime are characteristics traceable back to jazz's West African pedigree.During its early development, jazz also incorporated music from New England's religious hymns and from 19th and 20th century American popular music based on European music traditions. The origins of the word "jazz," which was first used to refer to music in about 1915, are uncertain.

Jazz has, from its early 20th century inception, spawned a variety of subgenres, from New Orleans Dixieland dating from the early 1910s, big band-style swing from the 1930s and 1940s, Bebop from the mid-1940s, a variety of Latin-jazz fusions such as Afro-Cuban and Brazilian jazz from the 1950s and 1960s, jazz-rock fusion from the 1970s and later developments such as acid jazz.Jazz

Stylistic origins: Blues and other folk musics, Ragtime, marching bands, 1910s New Orleans.

Typical instruments: Saxophone – Trumpet – Trombone – Clarinet – Piano – Guitar – Double bass – Drums – Vocals

Mainstream popularity: 1920s–1960s


By 1808 the Atlantic slave trade had brought almost half a million Africans to the United States, mostly to the East-Side New York. The slaves largely came from West Africa and brought strong tribal musical traditions with them. Lavish festivals featuring African dances to drums were organized on Sundays at Place Congo, or Congo Square, in New Orleans until 1843, as were similar gatherings in New England and New York. African music was largely functional, for work or ritual, and included work songs and field hollers. In the African tradition, they had a single-line melody and a call-and-response pattern, but without the Western concept of harmony. Rhythms reflected African speech patterns, and the African use of pentatonic scales led to blue notes in blues and jazz.

In the early 19th century an increasing number of black musicians learned to play Western instruments, particularly the violin, which they used to parody European dance music in their own cakewalk dances. In turn, European-American minstrel show performers in blackface popularized such music internationally, combining syncopation with European harmonic accompaniment. Louis Moreau Gottschalk adapted African-American cakewalk music, South American, Caribbean and other slave melodies as piano salon music. Another influence came from black slaves who had learned the harmonic style of hymns and incorporated it into their own music as spirituals. The origins of the blues are undocumented, though they can be seen as the secular counterpart of the spirituals. Paul Oliver has drawn attention to similarities in instruments, music and social function to the griots of the West African savannah under influence.



Emancipation of slaves led to new opportunities for education of freed African-Americans, but strict segregation meant limited employment opportunities. Black musicians provided "low-class" entertainment at dances and minstrel shows, and later vaudeville and many marching bands formed. Black pianists played in bars, clubs and brothels

In 1897, the white composer William H. Krell published his "Mississippi Rag" as the first written piano instrumental rag. The classically-trained pianist Scott Joplin produced his "Original Rags" in the following year, then in 1899 had an international hit with "Maple Leaf Rag". He wrote numerous popular rags combining syncopation, banjo figurations and sometimes call-and-response, which led to the ragtime idiom being taken up by classical composers including Claude Debussy and Igor Stravinsky. Blues music was published and popularized by W. C. Handy, whose "Memphis Blues" of 1912 and "St. Louis Blues" of 1914 both became jazz standards.

In New Orleans, many early jazz performers played in the brothels and bars of red-light district around Basin Street called "Storyville". As well, many marching bands played at lavish funerals arranged by the African American community. The instruments used in marching bands and dance bands became the basic instruments of jazz: brass and reeds tuned in the European 12-tone scale and drums. Small bands of primarily self-taught African American musicians, many of whom came from the funeral-procession tradition of New Orleans, played a seminal role in the development and dissemination of early jazz, traveling throughout Black communities in the Deep South and, from around 1914 on, Afro-Creole and African American musicians playing vaudeville shows took jazz to western and northern US cities.

A "...black musical spirit (involving rhythm and melody) was bursting out of the confines of European [marching band] musical tradition, even though the performers were using European styled instruments." Afro-Creole pianist Jelly Roll Morton began his career in Storyville. From 1904, he toured with vaudeville shows around southern cities, also playing in Chicago and New York. His "Jelly Roll Blues", which he composed around 1905, was published in 1915 as the first jazz arrangement in print, introducing more musicians to the New Orleans style.

That's How Dixie Was born, music sheet cover for a 1936 song

In the northeastern United States, a "hot" style of playing ragtime had developed, notably James Reese Europe's symphonic Clef Club orchestra in New York which played a benefit concert at Carnegie Hall in 1912, and his "Society Orchestra" which in 1913 became the first black group to make recordings. The Baltimore rag style of Eubie Blake influenced James P. Johnson's development of "Stride" piano playing, in which the right hand plays the melody, while the left hand provides the rhythm and bassline.

The Original Dixieland Jass Band's "Livery Stable Blues" released early in 1917 is one of the early jazz records. The name "Dixieland" is still used for early jazz, though in many areas it is taken to mean only the corny style adopted by white musicians, while the original is termed "New Orleans jazz" or "Trad jazz". That year numerous other bands made recordings featuring "jazz" in the title or band name, mostly ragtime or novelty records rather than jazz. In September 1917 W.C. Handy's Orchestra of Memphis recorded a cover version of "Livery Stable Blues". In February 1918 James Reese Europe's "Hellfighters" infantry band took ragtime to Europe during World War I,[20] then on return recorded Dixieland standards including "The Darktown Strutter's Ball".


1920s and 1930s

Prohibition in the United States [from 1920 to 1933] banned the sale of alcoholic drinks, resulting in illicit speakeasies becoming lively venues of the "Jazz Age", an era when popular music included current dance songs, novelty songs, and show tunes. From 1919 Kid Ory's Original Creole Jazz Band of musicians from New Orleans played in San Francisco and Los Angeles where in 1922 they became the first black jazz band to make recordings. However, the main centre developing the new "Hot Jazz" was Chicago, where King Oliver joined Bill Johnson. That year also saw the first recording by Bessie Smith, the most famous of the 1920s blues singers.

Bix Beiderbecke formed The Wolverines in 1924 and became the first white player widely regarded by black musicians as their artistic equal.[citation needed] Also in 1924 Armstrong joined the Fletcher Henderson dance band as featured soloist for a year, then formed his virtuosic Hot Five band, also popularising scat singing. Jelly Roll Morton recorded with the New Orleans Rhythm Kings in an early mixed-race collaboration, then in 1926 formed his Red Hot Peppers.

There was a larger market for jazzy dance music played by white orchestras, such as Jean Goldkette's orchestra and Paul Whiteman's orchestra. In 1924 Whiteman commissioned Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue, which was premiиred by Whiteman's Orchestra. More innovative approaches to jazz arrangements were taken by the Fletcher Henderson band and Duke Ellington's band (which opened an influential residency at the Cotton Club in 1927) in New York and by Earl Hines's Band in Chicago (who opened in The Grand Terrace Cafe there in 1928). All three significantly influenced the development of big band-style swing music.



The 1930s belonged to popular swing big bands, in which some virtuoso soloists became as famous as the band leaders. Key figures in developing the "big" jazz band were bandleaders and arrangers Count Basie, Cab Calloway, Fletcher Henderson, Earl Hines and Duke Ellington. Other Big Bands, such as Artie Shaw's, Tommy Dorsey's and Benny Goodman's "Orchestra" were highly jazz oriented while others, such as, later, Glenn Miller's, left less space for improvisation.

Trumpeter, bandleader and singer Louis Armstrong, known internationally as the "Ambassador of Jazz," was a much-imitated innovator of early jazz.

Swing was also dance music and it was broadcast on the radio 'live' coast-to-coast nightly across America for many years. Although it was a collective sound, swing also offered individual musicians a chance to 'solo' and improvise melodic, thematic solos which could at times be very complex and 'important' music.

Over time, social strictures regarding racial segregation began to relax, and white bandleaders began to recruit black musicians. In the mid-1930s, Benny Goodman hired pianist Teddy Wilson, vibraphonist Lionel Hampton, and guitarist Charlie Christian to join small groups. An early 1940s style known as "jumping the blues" or jump blues used small combos, up-tempo music, and blues chord progressions. Jump blues drew on boogie-woogie from the 1930s. Kansas City Jazz in the 1930s marked the transition from big bands to the bebop influence of the 1940s.


European Jazz

Outside of the United States the beginnings of a distinct European style of jazz emerged in France with the Quintette du Hot Club de France. Belgian guitar virtuoso Django Reinhardt popularized gypsy jazz, a mix of 1930s American swing, French dance hall "musette" and Eastern European folk with a languid, seductive feel. The main instruments are steel stringed guitar, violin, and double bass. Solos pass from one player to another as the guitar and bass play the role of the rhythm section.


1940s and 1950s

In the mid-1940s bebop performers helped to shift jazz from danceable popular music towards a more challenging "musician's music." Differing greatly from swing, early bebop divorced itself from dance music, establishing itself more as an art form but lessening its potential popular and commercial value. Influential bebop musicians included saxophonist Charlie Parker, pianists Bud Powell and Thelonious Monk, trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie and Clifford Brown, bassist Ray Brown, and drummer Max Roach.

Beboppers introduced new forms of chromaticism and dissonance into jazz and engaged in a more abstracted form of chord-based improvisation which used "passing" chords, substitute chords, and altered chords. The style of drumming shifted too to a more elusive and explosive style, in which the ride cymbal was used to keep time, while the snare and bass drum were used for unpredictable accents. These divergences from the jazz mainstream of the time initially met with a divided, sometimes hostile response among fans and fellow musicians. By the 1950s bebop had become an accepted part of the jazz vocabulary.


Hard Bop

Hard bop is an extension of bebop (or "bop") music that incorporates influences from rhythm and blues, gospel music, and blues, especially in the saxophone and piano playing. Hard bop was developed in the mid-1950s, partly in response to the vogue for cool jazz in the early 1950s. The hard bop style coalesced in 1953 and 1954, paralleling the rise of rhythm and blues. Miles Davis' performance of "Walkin'," the title track of his album of the same year, at the very first Newport Jazz Festival in 1954, announced the style to the jazz world. The quintet Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers, fronted by Blakey and featuring pianist Horace Silver and trumpeter Clifford Brown, were leaders in the hard bop movement along with Davis. (See also List of Hard bop musicians)


Free jazz

Free jazz and the related form of avant-garde jazz, are subgenres rooted in bebop, that use less compositional material and allow performers more latitude. Free jazz uses implied or loose harmony and tempo, which was deemed controversial when this approach was first developed. The bassist Charles Mingus is also frequently associated with the avant-garde in jazz, although his compositions draw off a myriad of styles and genres. The first major stirrings came in the 1950s, with the early work of Ornette Coleman and Cecil Taylor. In the 1960s, performers included John Coltrane, Archie Shepp, Sun Ra, Pharoah Sanders, and others. Keith Jarrett has been prominent in defending free jazz from criticism by traditionalists in recent years.


Cool jazz

Cool jazz emerged in the late 1940s in New York City, as a result of the mixture of the styles of predominantly white jazz musicians and black bebop musicians. Cool jazz recordings by Bill Evans, Dave Brubeck, Stan Getz, Lester Young, Chet Baker, and the Modern Jazz Quartet usually have a "lighter" sound which avoided the aggressive tempos and harmonic abstraction of bebop. An important recording was Miles Davis's Birth of the Cool (tracks originally recorded in 1949 and 1950 and collected as an LP in 1957). Players such as pianist Bill Evans began searching for new ways to structure their improvisations by exploring modal music. Cool jazz later became strongly identified with the West Coast jazz scene. Its influence stretches into such later developments as bossa nova, modal jazz (especially in the form of Davis's Kind of Blue 1959), and even free jazz (see also the List of Cool jazz and West Coast jazz musicians).


Latin jazz

Latin jazz has two main varieties: Afro-Cuban and Brazilian jazz. Afro-Cuban jazz was played in the U.S. directly after the bebop period, while Brazilian jazz became more popular in the 1960s. Afro-Cuban jazz began as a movement in the mid-1950s as bebop musicians such as Dizzy Gillespie and Billy Taylor started Afro-Cuban bands influenced by such Cuban and Puerto Rican musicians as Xavier Cugat, Tito Puente, and Arturo Sandoval. Brazilian jazz such as bossa nova is derived from samba, with influences from jazz and other 20th-century classical and popular music styles. Bossa is generally moderately paced, with melodies sung in Portuguese or English. The style was pioneered by Brazilians Joгo Gilberto, Antфnio Carlos Jobim. The related term jazz-samba describes an adaptation of bossa nova compositions to the jazz idiom by American performers such as Stan Getz and Charlie Byrd.

Jazz continued changing though other styles like:Soul Jazz, 1970s trends, Jazz fusion, 1980s-2000's and Improvisation...


~Terminology|||Characteristics|||Influences and development~

Pop music is a music genre that developed from the mid-1950s as a softer alternative to rock 'n' roll and later to rock music. It has a focus on commercial recording, often orientated towards a youth market, usually through the medium of relatively short and simple love songs. While these basic elements of the genre have remained fairly constant, pop music has absorbed influences from most other forms of popular music, particularly borrowing from the development of rock music, and utilizing key technological innovations to produce new variations on existing themes.


The term "pop song" is first recorded as being used in 1926 in the sense of a piece of music "having popular appeal". Starting in the 1950s the term "pop music" has been used to describe a distinct genre, aimed at a youth market, often characterized as a softer alternative to rock and roll. In the aftermath of the British Invasion, from about 1967, it was increasingly used in opposition to the term rock music, to describe a form that was more commercial, ephemeral and accessible. Although pop music is often seen as oriented towards the singles charts, as a genre it is not the sum of all chart music, which have always contained songs from a variety of sources, including classical, jazz, rock, and novelty songs, while pop music as a genre is usually seen as existing and developing separately.



Musicologists often identify the following characteristics as typical of the pop music genre:

a focus on the individual song or singles, rather than on extended works or albums

aimed at appealing to a general audience, rather than to a particular sub-culture or ideology

an emphasis on craftsmanship rather than formal "artistic" qualities

an emphasis on recording, production, and technology, over acoustic live performance

a tendency to reflect existing trends rather than progressive developments

The main medium of pop music is the song, often between two and a half and three and a half minutes in length, generally marked by a consistent and noticeable rhythmic element, a mainstream style and a simple traditional structure. Common variants include the verse-chorus form and the thirty-two-bar form, with a focus on melodies and catchy hooks, and a chorus that contrasts melodically, rhythmically and harmonically with the verse. The beat and the melodies tend to be simple, with limited harmonic accompaniment. The lyrics of modern pop songs typically focus on simple themes – often love and romantic relationships – although there are notable exceptions.

According to Simon Frith pop music is produced "as a matter of enterprise not art...is designed to appeal to everyone" and "doesn't come from any particular place or mark off any particular taste." It is "not driven by any significant ambition except profit and commercial reward...and, in musical terms, it is essentially conservative." It is "provided from on high (by record companies, radio programmers and concert promoters) rather than being made from below...Pop is not a do-it-yourself music but is professionally produced and packaged."


Influences and development

Throughout its development, pop music has absorbed influences from most other genres of popular music. Early pop music drew on the sentimental ballad for its form, gained its use of vocal harmonies from gospel and soul music, instrumentation from jazz and rock music, orchestration from classical music, tempo from dance music, backing from electronic music and has recently appropriated spoken passages from rap. It has also made use of technological innovation, being itself made possible by the invention of the electronic microphone and the vinyl record, and adopting multi-track recording and digital sampling as methods for the creation and elaboration of pop music. Pop music was also communicated largely through the mass media, including radio, film, TV and, particularly since the 1980s, video. Pop music has been dominated by the American (and from the mid-1960s British) music industries, whose influence has made pop music something of an international monoculture, but most regions and countries have their own form of pop music, sometimes producing local versions of wider trends, and lending them local characteristics. Some of these trends (for example Europop) have had a significant impact of the development of the genre.


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