Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Modern Fusion

"When I hear the word “fusion” in the context of music, my first thought is of a flaccid synthesis of funk and jazz that boils away the best element of both.

However, fusion- the fusion of genres, of instrumentation, of compositional or ideological theory, is really the present and the future of music… and there are so many fusions of style and form out there that simply miss the public eye because people don’t understand what they’re listening to. Even literally the process of fusion inside a star involves two particles fusing together, creating something new. (And giving off a hell of a lot of energy in the process.)

True fusion isn’t a surface thing. It isn’t the half-assed blending of several aesthetic or social postures. It goes straight for its heart, and in merging that essence with another, something truly unique is born. It doesn’t matter that you can trace it’s lineage, or that all of the original forms are “borrowed.” There is a musical communication of culture and of experience. This is nothing new. It is how cultures spread and form: through art, through music, through myths and stories as groups of people encounter one another, and their existences co-mingle. No form of music is unique in its source: but what evolves out of it… Well, that’s another story. We are different from our parents and yet like them. The same is true of music as generations pass.

So what’s all this bullshit about genres having hearts? Am I talking sense or have I finally gone off the deep end? Let’s take Metal for instance- whether you’re talking about thrash metal, speed metal, death metal, or black metal- it is linear, it is aggressive and fast, like a machine built for war. If you took Bach, gave him modern equipment, and pumped him full of testosterone and super-drugs, you would get the quintessence of metal. It’s no mystery why the true home of Black Metal is in Scandinavia. It is grandiose, proud, and harsh. Black metal is Viking music. Other forms of metal have different cultural heritages, (Nordic, Germanic), but they all share that same machine-mentality: of the linear, of the powerful, of the precise and the efficient."

Full article and tracks from Cynic's album Focus.

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