Saturday, August 25, 2007

Lazy Songwriting, or More Songs for Your Buck?

I was listening to Hins Cheung's latest album (honestly a little disappointing, but more in a later review elsewhere), and I'm reminded of an annoying trend in pop music. I'm not a music student (playing the trumpet in middle and high schools doesn't count), so the best way I can explain it is the use of two separate melodies for one song. For example, let's say a song builds a certain atmosphere in the verse, but the chorus (really the most important part of a pop song) suddenly changes into a different melody that seems to be from a whole different song.

Some songs do manage to pull this off well (Bohemian Rhapsody is a prime example), but when it doesn't, it shows either the songwriter got stuck with a chorus and couldn't think of a proper verse, or vice versa. Either way, when it happens, it takes attentive listeners out of a song, and I'm personally quite sick of it. Today, I offer examples from the different pop worlds I listen where this happens.

Hong Kong:




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