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Topic: New releases are now shorter, is streaming overriding artistic creativity?  (Read 6207 times) previous topic - next topic
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New releases are now shorter, is streaming overriding artistic creativity?

Quote
Popular music is shrinking. From 2013 to 2018, the average song on the Billboard Hot 100 fell from 3 minutes and 50 seconds to about 3 minutes and 30 seconds. Six percent of hit songs were 2 minutes 30 seconds or shorter in 2018, up from just 1% five years before.

Stands to reason if artists are being paid per stream, long gone are the 10 or 15 minute tracks.

Read more:  https://qz.com/1519823/is-spotify-making-songs-shorter/

Re: New releases are now shorter, is streaming overriding artistic creativity?

Reply #1
Good thing there are still counterexamples.
https://www.metal-archives.com/albums/Panopticon/The_Scars_of_Man_on_the_Once_Nameless_Wilderness_I_and_II/703415
Long songs, 5 of them are above 9 minutes, also excellent recording and mastering (not affected by loudness war unlike many).
I think there were a few more albums in 2018 showing these qualities too...

https://www.metal-archives.com/albums/Elysian_Blaze/The_Virtue_of_Suffering/711351
this one is just a single song but it's over 18 minutes. also from 2018.

https://www.metal-archives.com/albums/In_the_Woods.../Cease_the_Day/734721
another example from 2018, pretty much all songs are above 6 minutes, and it's good

https://www.metal-archives.com/albums/Sargeist/Unbound/739387 worth mentioning too, even if median song length is "just" a bit above 4.5 minutes and the maximum is a bit above 6 minutes.
Keep calm and opusenc --bitrate 128

Re: New releases are now shorter, is streaming overriding artistic creativity?

Reply #2
As the article implies that's for Pop, Rap and Country music, mostly.

I guess for other more album-oriented genres, such as Rock (even for most Pop rock) it's just business as usual - albeit in ever-changing new formats (YT, Spotifiy and all that jazz).
Listen to the music, not the media.
Qualidade em MP3

Re: New releases are now shorter, is streaming overriding artistic creativity?

Reply #3
Even though it's usually said it's anyone's guess how long albums, as we know them, are still going to last.

I'm still hopefull that current artists,  whose career have spanned decades, are going to hold on to that familiar format and somehow influence, inspire newcomers in the genres I mentioned previously, to carry on this, erm, legacy.
Listen to the music, not the media.
Qualidade em MP3

Re: New releases are now shorter, is streaming overriding artistic creativity?

Reply #4
A weird statistics, especially since radio never liked songs which are longer than 3 minutes. I remember a song by a Germany band, which made fun of it. After 3 minutes a voice said to the radio dj that the song is over now.

Re: New releases are now shorter, is streaming overriding artistic creativity?

Reply #5
Not to mention the obnoxious "radio edits", such as Slash's shortened guitar solo in Gun N'Roses's "Sweet Child O'Mine", for instance.
Listen to the music, not the media.
Qualidade em MP3

Re: New releases are now shorter, is streaming overriding artistic creativity?

Reply #6
Before CD, albums were about 40 minutes long, unless the record company stumped up for a multi-disc release.

Then, with 80 minutes available on the silver disc, some artists filled that whole extra space with music... while many others used it as a dumping ground for worthless filler so we'd think we were getting VFM.

Now, things have changed again, but this time there is freedom to release something as long or short as one likes. I've got no problem with that, whether short and sweet, or long and exploratory.

Re: New releases are now shorter, is streaming overriding artistic creativity?

Reply #7
Not to mention the obnoxious "radio edits", such as Slash's shortened guitar solo in Gun N'Roses's "Sweet Child O'Mine", for instance.

Most radio stations cut out the second part of November Rain.

Re: New releases are now shorter, is streaming overriding artistic creativity?

Reply #8
Even though it's usually said it's anyone's guess how long albums, as we know them, are still going to last.

I'm still hopefull that current artists,  whose career have spanned decades, are going to hold on to that familiar format and somehow influence, inspire newcomers in the genres I mentioned previously, to carry on this, erm, legacy.

I wrangle the promo releases sent by labels to a local metal/hard rock review site, and there are still tons and tons of albums getting promoted, every day. I know some bands like to do 4-5 song EPs more often, instead of 10-15 track albums spaced farther apart, because it keeps people engaged when you regularly release new material. But the vast majority of the artists I see still prefer to release albums.

 

Re: New releases are now shorter, is streaming overriding artistic creativity?

Reply #9
A weird statistics, especially since radio never liked songs which are longer than 3 minutes. I remember a song by a Germany band, which made fun of it. After 3 minutes a voice said to the radio dj that the song is over now.
 
Now you've just made me curious: can you please tell me which band/track it is, please?
Listen to the music, not the media.
Qualidade em MP3

Re: New releases are now shorter, is streaming overriding artistic creativity?

Reply #10
The idea that creativity is enhanced by artistic freedom i sooo wrong. Creativity relies on constraints.
I'm late

Re: New releases are now shorter, is streaming overriding artistic creativity?

Reply #11
Quote
especially since radio never liked songs which are longer than 3 minutes.
:D :D When I was a DJ on the college radio station in the 1970s I once played the 2nd half of Elton John's Funeral For a Friend/Love Lies Bleeding.  

We were an "album rock" station so there were no rules against playing long songs.   I just liked the Love Lies Bleeding part better!   And, it's probably still over 3 minutes.

Re: New releases are now shorter, is streaming overriding artistic creativity?

Reply #12
When was the last time Billboard 100 was used as a yardstick for creativity though :p Much of the most popular/marketed music increasingly over the past decade has become formulaic, riding the latest trends in a more cynical manner I feel. Driven by new media? Maybe. It has allowed broader accessibility/marketability of music, facilitating me-too hits (these have always existed, to be fair, perhaps again they just manage to reach more now).

That said some of my favorite music has been produced in the last five years, a select few of which have been from more mainstream artists, and I haven't observed a shortening of tracks for its own sake.

I remember thinking years back while listening to tracks from Neil Young how refreshing it was they just... end when it felt appropriate (many of them sub 3 minutes, hovering between 2:20-50) and wishing more artists didn't feel the need to stretch tracks longer than they could adapt or extend the concept. Some songs only need to be short while some feel perfect longer.

 
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