Monday, January 9, 2012

Enjoyable Music & Inspirational Music: Are they the same?

I’ve been analyzing the patterns in which I listen to music and how different genres/styles make me feel during and after. My self-analysis of listening patterns has made me realize that I tend to categorize music into two main sections:

1. Enjoyable: Music that I listen to just for what it is, enjoy it, sing along, unwind to!

2. Inspirational: Music that acts as the catalyst to a complex chemical reaction eventually leading to anxiousness and self-inflicted violence if I don’t grab a Guitar, plug into Logic, load up Superior Drummer, and get to work!

So, what sets apart the two categories?

I guess that there are certain genres and styles that I listen to that don’t start a fire on the creative side of my brain, just for the sake of unwinding and to really capture the absolute listening experience that the song was intended to disperse (for example: acoustic rock, radio hits, etc). With such genres I find myself just at ease while listening, good music for driving, walking, post-work hours unwinding time; you know? Just music for the fun of it!

On the other end of the spectrum are genres and bands that, when I am listening to, give me a sensation of being injected with some sort of a substance that leaves me in a state where I just need to get a hold of a guitar right that second and start working on new song ideas. It’s an instantaneous sensation; actually, I don’t really go through an entire discography of a band to have to get the creative goggles on.

To be fair, there always is as cross-over period of time where the Enjoyable songs spark an inspiration and other times (lots of times) where the Inspirational songs are just being tuned to strictly for the fun of listening to them. I guess it also depends on what time of the year it is, am I working on new material at the time when I’m tuning in to the Inspirational songs? Am I opening doors for inspirational ideas to be absorbed?

The truth is, if you’re ever inspired about and toward something, you can never turn that inspiration on and even if you’re unaware that an absorption is taking place your senses may very well be soaking up a little of all the things that you are exposed to, be it music, art, movies, something you read, or whatever it may that triggers your senses.

Finally, here’s a list of bands that to me belong to each of the afore-mentioned categories. (Note that INSPIRATIONAL bands are REALLY ENJOYABLE too!)

Spock’s Beard
Neal Morse
Woods of Ypres
A Perfect Circle
Maroon 5
Alter Bridge*
Linkin Park*
Breaking Benjamin*
Guns N Roses

Dream Theater
Scar Symmetry
Symphony X
Lamb of God
Stealing Axion
Linkin Park*
Killswitch Engage
Fear Factory
Alter Bridge*
Breaking Benjamin*
Porcupine Tree

*indicates bands that are on both sides 

Talk soon!


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