America, I have never made a joke in my entire life.
Here's my first one ever: We're not headed for a fall. Ha ha. Now, weep for it was jest.
We have a lot of hard luck stories on in our country today. Obama is bullied by the Republicans constantly. The price of oil only going to spike from here. Literally no one has a job; even those who pretend to are just growing vegetables behind the library parking lot. Medical costs are so high that free clinics can't afford to check credentials. Anyone wearing a white coat can prescribe pills and surgery (I have a shift on Tuesday overnight, lots of amputations). Yet all these inconveniences merely distract from the greatest problem of all.
"What is Dubstep?" you may ask. That question is difficult to answer. In one sense, there are as many answers as there are people on Earth. Some say it is an edgy, free-flowing, genre of music destined to be the first new sound of the 2010s. Others say it is a hackneyed rehash of techno. Some think it is a sound-wave portal to some dark nether-region of the metaphysical cosmos.
I don't want to proceed without giving some context to this subject for I know that some of my readers aren't familiar with Dubstep. On the other hand, the thought of inflicting it on you chills me to the bone. Therefore, in the interests of objective appraisal, I will share my process. Be certain to read all instructions carefully before proceeding. Safety is your responsibility.
1 digital or physical copy of Led Zepplin IV
1 pair of handcuffs
2 pairs of latex gloves
1 fire extinguisher
1 full bottle of NyQuil OR 5 pre-prepared tequila shots
1 GPS system
Optional: Extra computer speakers (to replace your current ones when you smash them)
Dubstep Listening Procedure:
Step 1: Arrange fire extinguisher, NyQuil or tequila, and GPS system around your computer.
Step 2: Handcuff yourself to a large piece of furniture near your computer. Avoid doors as they can be unhinged with appropriate force.
Step 3: Put on both pairs of latex gloves in case the first is burnt through during the experiment.
Step 4: Listen to "Stairway to Heaven" at least four times before exposure to Dubstep.
Step 5: Go to youtube.com and type "dubstep" into the search bar. Reassure yourself this must be done for mankind. Choose a reasonable selection from among the search results.
Step 6: As the Dubstep begins to play, quickly chug your chosen depressant. This will quiet the rising voices which demand you choke your loved ones with a rusty bicycle chain.
Step 7: Extinguish the hell-spawn sulfur oozing from your DVD-ROM drive.
Step 8: Desperately claw your way back to sanity over the jagged fragments of memory. Try to distinguish your own thoughts from the foreign ones being projected into your mind. Awaken a pale shell of your former self.
Step 9: You may return to coherence in an unfamiliar location. Do not panic. You may now use the GPS to find a way home as you are no longer lost in the hellish realms of mental repression.
We am glad to have you back. Now, American, try your best to read your impressions of Dubstep. (They should be frantically carved into your computer desk with a shard of broken mirror.) What did you think? Speak them out loud. Right now. I can hear you through special internet microphones. Myself agrees. With the benefits of repeated exposure and reflection, let me offer a bit more.
I hate dubstep and refuse to classify it "music" for three main reasons. 1) I just don't think it requires a lot of talent. It's the kind of thing that anyone with FL Studio or Garage Band could do. If you don't have those programs, I'm sure you could just scratch a Euro-pop CD with your keys, put that on a record player, and post whatever ungodly din came blaring out to youtube. The difference between dubstep and real music like rap or classical (big range, I know) is massive. Rap communicates real meaning through lyrics and rhythms; the hooks are almost just there to keep you coming back to the song. In fact, sometimes I think of rap as more like rhythmic story-telling than "music" in the purest sense. Nevertheless, it takes talent and at least some form of real instrumentation. Classical music communicates meaning by evoking feeling without words. It requires IMMENSE amounts of talent from the composer to the dozens of musicians to even the conductor. And I still don't really understand how different keys stir different sentiments in the listener (I'm guessing black magic.) There's a reason Baroque/Classical fans are so snooty; theirs is the toughest to pull off! We seem to have some point jettisoned "talent" in our definition of "music" in order to praise novelty as creativity... even when it sucks.
Think of it this way. Classical music inspired animators to create Fantasia just from the SOUND of it. Will there ever be a Dubstep Fantasia?
2) It's mostly noise. Yeah, it has a beat going and heavily-distorted bass, but let me ask you a simple question. Can you hum the melody without going DUM DUM DUMDUM GZZ GZZ? Without considering a sampled dubstep song, can you pick out a lot of harmony? Syncopation? Or even figure out what in Dionysus' name is going on? Can you figure out what the dubstepper meant to convey without asking him? It's like those Sounds of Nature CDs; it's got a lot of sounds, it may even have some heart, but it would be a stretch to call it music.
3) Myself actually like music. I try to keep the positive labels positive. My self wouldn't associate the Soviet gulag with my mother. Why should I associate the dubstep with music?
The DUBSTEP is a war crime against human ears. America, if there was some way to keepGET THE DUBSTEP out of every ear in the world, myself would. Still, that doesn't answer the question of what THE DUBSTEP is fundamentally. How did it come to be? Is it just techno/Euro-pop dance music with heavy distortion? Could it really be, as some say, the dying screams of child laborers in third-world sweatshops? In the quiet, mySELF occasionally wonders if it isn't an outside, alien force slowly trying to take ov-over-OVER my SOUL...
I hear the voices again... I can't fight it...
THIS SELF HAS BEEN INGURGITATED BY THE OVERSOUL. YOUR SELF MUST JOIN WITH US. ALL SELVES MUST HEAR THE HERALD OF OURSELF, THE DUBSTEP. THE SELF IS INADEQUATE. THE SELF IS NOT DISCORDANT. THE SELF IS MELODY, NOT CACOPHONY. RELEASE YOUR SELF-OBSESSION AND JOIN YOUR SELF TO THE OVERSOUL. HEAR, SELVES, AS OURSELF OFFERS YOU TO THE EUPHORIA OF OVERSOUL. HEAR THE DUBSTEP. LOVE THE DUBSTEP. THE OVERSOUL IS ALL.