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What is "emo" music?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by adouglas, Sep 12, 2003.


  1. adouglas

    adouglas

    Jun 23, 2003
    Bridgeport, CT
    Forgive me for being an old fart here, but just what the heck is "emo" music? I keep seeing references to it on music store bulletin boards.
     
  2. Emo is the eliteist punk scene, kinda. It's the "vintageish, acousticy(sometimes), usually relationship oriented, whiny (usually earth-toned) punk/gothish side of popish rock. I'm describing both the clothing, the people, and the music itself. See bands like "Dashboard Confessional" (i would think that most people think that this is the central and most pure form of Emo, but i'm not sure) "Saves the Day", "Thursday", "Mae" (awesome), and some would say that this term even has range enough to include bands like "AFI" (also awesome) and "Rusted Root". DON"T TAKE MY WORD AS FINAL ON THIS DEFINITION. I am not cool enough to be Emo. Anyone who is will take great offense at my description, and you should listen to them.
     
  3. Generally it's a sort of soft or mellancolic kind of punk rock..

    I have much more to say about "emo" but i'll rather wait till someone else breaks the piñata..
    (I don't know where that piñata thing came from.. )
    :D

    :p
     
  4. adouglas

    adouglas

    Jun 23, 2003
    Bridgeport, CT
    Damn...I *am* getting old. The only one of those bands I've heard of is Rusted Root.
     
  5. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    When a alternative-punk sings about his/her feelings - that's emo. ;)
     
  6. fastplant

    fastplant

    Sep 26, 2002
    Connecticut
    Emo isn't really based on punk or pop, it actually formed out of the post hardcore scene. It's emo (emotional) rock. Almost anything really can be emo when you think about it. But all the bands listed above (save maybe rusted root, I don't really agree on that one) would be considered "real" emo. But emo is not always whiny slow acoustic music, some of it is really heavy. It's one of those genres that's not clearly defined so it's something different to everyone. My old band Fastplant we considered emo, some considered punk, here's some mp3's www.garageband.com/fastplant See what you think.
     
  7. adouglas

    adouglas

    Jun 23, 2003
    Bridgeport, CT
    Hey, JMX, if that Steve Morse DVD is the same one I've got, it's pretty cool. I saw the Dregs play at Toad's Place (the same venue where the concert footage on the DVD was shot) not too long ago. Great performance, but too bloody loud for the room. I mean I was standing all the way at the back and my shirt was literally fluttering. So loud that I couldn't tell what song they were playing until they got to the hook.

    My favorite part of the DVD is where Steve is talking at a guitar clinic. He has very good things to say about guitar that ALL guitarists should hear. In particular, the bit about how having an electric guitar is like having a car with 800 horsepower and nothing but an on/off switch instead of a throttle. The trick, he says, is to harness all that power and keep it under control. I've heard way too many guitarists mistake volume for quality. There really isn't any good reason to play at 120 dB. You can get the point across without making the audience's ears bleed.

    Which is interesting given how flippin' loud the Dregs were. I blame the sound man.
     
  8. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    While most music is "emo" (as another wise TB'er has said), today it is defined derisively as: (upper Middle class) "Suburban teen angst* that the world isn't fair, and alot of chicks don't go for me, and I got cool guitar gear from mom for getting at least a 'b' average in High School, but I'm still mis-understood though I like soccer(I think), I didn't make the football team, Abechrombie is expensive, but my friends wear it too (I dominate wearing it), "uh, oh yeah thanks for letting me drive the Subaru tonite, mom" kinda music.

    Sounds like: VERSE; (clean guitar sound on) "I'm sad and blue, I'm misunderstood, lah,lah, (clean guitar sound off) CHORUS: (distorted guitar sound on W/lowB) I"M SCREAMIN' I'M MAD, I'M REALLY, REALLY, MAD! Repeat.

    *The angst being of questionable sincerity.
     
  9. i, too, felt like a major old fart when i heard that term. to me, it's just a b.s. definition of "angry rock", whatever even that is supposed to be.

    but when i asked, i was also told it was "emotional" or "emotive" music.


    i mean -- doesn't that basically characterize 90% of the music out today?



    i hate categories.

    :bassist:

    meeks
     
  10. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany


    It's the same one. The weird thing is, here you can get the DVD Sects, Dregs And Rock 'n' Roll and another one called Cruise Control, both with the same blue PAL cover, but different text on the back. My version is 230 mins.

    Only bummer is that the 8-page booklet mentions a video of Cruise Control that I wasn't able to find on the DVD yet.
    But other that that it's good. I like Steve a lot, and Dave is always a treat too.
     
  11. fastplant

    fastplant

    Sep 26, 2002
    Connecticut

    Sadly, that's pretty accurate for about 99% of emo.
     
  12. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    And this sidebar conversation is a perfect example of a "quality" Thread Hijackin'.
     
  13. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    Rusted Root isn't in the same ballpark as emo. It's not even the same sport.

    Emo is usually really whiny during the verses, with the vocals being sung with lots of long notes and not really very good melodies, if they exist at all (mostly). The verses are an excersize in pitchless screaming (mostly), and not screaming in a good way like Phil Anselmo or Maynard. It's uncontrolled screaming. Ugh.

    Mosty the music is not very pitch centered either, so you can't tell whether they are in a major or minor key. Of course, you could blame the record companies for this as well, as most of the production sounds the same band to band and effectively makes the emo scene as bland as possible.

    There is some good stuff out there, though. Weezer's Pinkerton CD springs to mind. That's the only one I can think of, but I'm sure there's more.
     
  14. Some of it's good,some of it sucks IMO...

    I find a liking to "Screamo" myself...

    they're singing kind of the same thing...except screaming it:D
     
  15. kaboom133

    kaboom133

    Oct 19, 2001
    Latrobe PA
    i find it hard to agree with a lot of this.... but to each his own opinion. emo is imo not whiny, that's pop punk. when someone says emo the first thing that pops into my mind would be jimmy eat world, both the older stuff and the newer stuff. jawbreaker is another example. it's any kind of punk/alternative that's about emotion.
     
  16. I find that often a lot of people have very deatailed descriptions and definitions(usually negative) of genres(usually rap or emo) that they clearly have heard very little of. Obviously there is good and bad music from all genres, the bad usually making it to the radio/mtv. For some reason people forget this when it comes to rap and emo.
    Emo really has nothing to do with punk, it started as emotional hardcore which was shortened to emo. A band called Rites of Spring pretty much started the genre. Over time most of the music has gotten less hardcore with bands like Sunny Day Real Estate. There are now a lot of sub genres like hardcore emo(Thursday) and screamo(From Autumn to Ashes). Bands like Dahboard Confessional and the other "whiny bands" are like the Nelly and 50 Cent of emo, they suck and are pretty much what most people associate the gnre with, but they dont represent the genre as a whole.

    BTW- all the bands i mentioned(minus DC, Nelly, and 50) are excellent and very much worth checking out.
     
  17. I fixed it for you, you're welcome:)
     
  18. kaboom133

    kaboom133

    Oct 19, 2001
    Latrobe PA
    Crap!!! i forgot rites of spring. they're what i usually use as a deffinition on this subject also. i love them.