Opinion: Should a Change in Sound Equal ‘Selling Out’?
Something I’m getting increasingly bored with is the amount of hate a band gets when they release a second/third album with a different sound to what fans are used to. I can see it coming from a mile away as well. The band do an interview in a magazine and they say something like “We’ve gone for a different sound this time around.” I groan and grit my teeth waiting for the first single. Sure enough the new single is released and YouTube/Twitter/Tumblr/Facebook explodes with venom and hatred. My question is can we call ourselves fans if we ditch a band for changing their sound or is it just the genre we like and the bands aren’t anything but the ones who make the sound.
Take for example metalcore band Architects. Their first album “Hollow Crown” was a technical metalcore masterpiece that took them to the head of the genre with a massive, obsessive fanbase. Then they released their second album “The Here and Now” which was just straight up metalcore with none of the technical guitar work. Their fanbase exploded and divided with many to this day still griping about “how good they used to be”. There are loads of other examples. Your Demise are currently getting chewed out for their blend of hardcore and pop punk, Four Year Strong’s less popcore approach to their most recent effort managed to annoy as well. The list goes on and on. That’s not to say I’m not guilty of it. I prefer my metal and hardcore to have fun lyrics and a bouncing riff and I really hate it when a band goes from a party band to a serious band; Bring Me the Horizon and Gallows being the main offenders for me.
Due to my mellow attitude and calmness of nature I don’t understand how people can be so harsh. YouTube is a breeding ground for some of the most hurtful, vile comments I’ve ever read and I find some of it pretty over the top. Most of them have just come on to the video to bash the band. What’s the point?
My question is can we call ourselves fans if we ditch the artists for changing their sound or is it just the genre we like and the bands aren’t anything more than instruments in our entertainment? Do you think the band/artist is as important as the music? Or should we all be fanatical about the purity of our favorite genre? Leave a comment and we’ll start a discussion.