Author Topic: Lazy songwriting techniques  (Read 6176 times)

thecuriousorange

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #30 on: April 22, 2013, 01:45:08 PM »
You might not know this, it was number one in Ireland for about two and a half months 13 years ago. It's a remix of that She's a Maniac song from Flashdance with a Scooter-style MC bellowing "put your hands in the air" cliches like he's operating the bumper cars at a funfair.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFe41uvBq2I

Contains the following lazy cliches/terrible lyrics:

"5, 4, 3, 2, 1. Take this house to the MAXIMUM"

"Come with me to the place to be"

"Oogy, oogy, oogy! Oi, oi, oi!"

"Yeah yeah funky yeah"

"Are. You. Ready?!"

"Hands in the air" "rhymed with "just don't care"

"Back in the house for the year 2000" - I hate when rappers/MCs say the name of the year.

That YT clip might seem like a live version, but that's the single that was released and was a massive smash. I couldn't get away from it when I was about 15.

daf

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #31 on: April 22, 2013, 02:13:38 PM »
Songs about love - stop rubbing it in you bastards!

Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #32 on: April 22, 2013, 02:14:56 PM »
That YT clip might seem like a live version, but that's the single that was released and was a massive smash. I couldn't get away from it when I was about 15.

It's awesomely bad, jaw dropping, really. I remember knackers in souped up Honda Civics driving around with the windows open and that piece of shit blasting out. How can someone like a song where the guy goes "oggy oggy oggy oi oi oi" and "come with me to the place to be" ?

Have these people no self respect ? It's ridiculous.

Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #33 on: April 22, 2013, 02:22:28 PM »
Things being "On fire" in songs.

Things "Lasting Forever" in songs.

Kane Jones

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #34 on: April 22, 2013, 02:25:45 PM »
Rhyming 'money' with 'honey'.  Except when AC/DC do it.  They're exempt.

Shoulders?-Stomach!

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #35 on: April 22, 2013, 02:30:10 PM »
Things being "On fire" in songs.

Things "Lasting Forever" in songs.

Doing things a hundred/thousand/million times

Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #36 on: April 22, 2013, 02:38:06 PM »
Nicking the rhythm track off another record and using it to soup up your insipid ditty - I'm thinking specifically here of that dreadful 'Fairground' song by Simply Red which was inescapable back in the mid-90s.  The entire rhythm track was nicked from 'Give It Up' by the Goodmen, which had already been a sizeable hit single, although I've just read on Wikipedia that this was itself nicked from a Sergio Mendes record.

alan nagsworth

  • even the bombs and scarecrows will sing
Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #37 on: April 22, 2013, 02:39:06 PM »
The late and wonderful rudi once demanded that all snare drums should be banned from music making for twelve months. NoSleep went on to suggest that all drums and emulations thereof should be abolished for a full century. I thought they were great ideas.

Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #38 on: April 22, 2013, 02:39:52 PM »
People who are,
all alone,
sitting at home,
waiting by the phone.

alan nagsworth

  • even the bombs and scarecrows will sing
Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #39 on: April 22, 2013, 02:50:22 PM »
Things being "On fire" in songs.

Quote
Alicia Keys - Girl On Fire

She's just a girl, and she's on fire
Hotter than a fantasy, lonely like a highway
She's living in a world, and it's on fire
Feeling the catastrophe, but she knows she can fly away

Oh, she got both feet on the ground
And she's burning it down
Oh, she got her head in the clouds
And she's not backing down

This girl is on fire
This girl is on fire
She's walking on fire
This girl is on fire

Looks like a girl, but she's a flame
So bright, she can burn your eyes
Better look the other way
You can try but you'll never forget her name
She's on top of the world
Hottest of the hottest girls say

Oh, we got our feet on the ground
And we're burning it down
Oh, got our head in the clouds
And we're not coming down

This girl is on fire
This girl is on fire
She's walking on fire
This girl is on fire

Everybody stands, as she goes by
Cause they can see the flame that's in her eyes
Watch her when she's lighting up the night
Nobody knows that she's a lonely girl
And it's a lonely world
But she gon' let it burn, baby, burn, baby

This girl is on fire
This girl is on fire
She's walking on fire
This girl is on fire

Oh, oh, oh...

She's just a girl, and she's on fire

LITERALLY EVERYTHING IS ON FUCKING FIRE. The girl is not just a flame, she's also on fire. So that's a bit of fire that's on fire. Right. And she's got fire in her eyes, so that's fire inside a bit of fire that's on fire. Okay. She's also walking on fire. Got it. The world is also on fire. Cool. She also plans to set the night on fire somehow. Bit of a far fetched concept, but alright. She's gonna burn it all down, even though it's already on fire and everything seems to be sustaining itself quite well amidst the flames, which are EVERYWHERE.

Absolutely atrocious. Writes her own songs does she? I fucking wish she didn't.

Tiny Poster

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #40 on: April 22, 2013, 02:55:57 PM »
Making noises to fit a rhyme. First example I can think of being in Wu-Tang Clan's Protect Ya Neck - the Method Man line "I'm hot like sauce, the smoke from the lyrical butt makes me *cough*".

That is fucking cool you idiot.

See also the "NNNnnnnnndddrrrroppppp!", as mentioned above.

Blam!!

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #41 on: April 22, 2013, 03:38:46 PM »
Oh, I don't deny it's not cool, but it's hardly the most taxing thing to do. Effortlessly cool - emphasis on the first word.

I don't have the Ramones version to hand, but the original lyric is "Where the California girls are really the most."

Ta. No idea why Joey Ramone sings best then, artistic license I suppose. I thought maybe Handsome Dick Manitoba might have sung best on The Dictators version, and perhaps Joey went with that, but no, it's clearly most on The Dictators version. I could just be hearing things.

NoSleep

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #42 on: April 22, 2013, 03:45:41 PM »
Joey sings "most." It must be his NY accent throwing you.

Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #43 on: April 22, 2013, 03:52:50 PM »
See also the "NNNnnnnnndddrrrroppppp!", as mentioned above.

And 25% of what came out of this guys mouth.



"Just warmin' up a little bit vroom vroom"

Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #44 on: April 22, 2013, 04:15:07 PM »
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFe41uvBq2I

I wouldn't have liked to have been subjected to this in the way you obviously were. It would be torment. But from where I'm sitting I'm lovin' it.

NoSleep

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    • Space Is The Place
Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #45 on: April 22, 2013, 04:30:39 PM »
Just using major and minor chords (including the 7th varieties of each). Just using major and minor scales.

McFlymo

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #46 on: April 22, 2013, 05:49:42 PM »
I find it hard to make sweeping judgements on these things, but I might as well have a go. ....

Auto-tuned Party Pop Music for teens that uses the word 'Tonight' needs to stop. NOW.

There are certain chord progressions that annoy me, but I realise it's also about the rest of the music.

Someone mentioned repeating a simple melody 4 times over a predictable chord progression. Yep. That's very often annoying.

However, so much can be excused if there's some conviction coming from the performers. In a similar vein, I can forgive predictable chords and melodies if there's a believably kitsch or patische or dare I say it, ironic intention to their use. (see a lot of modern French Disco / Swonky sampled hip hop / Bleepy electronica)

Most metal can fuck right off: Stop screaming about being white middle class repressed homosexuals. No one cares.
Muscles and long hair are boring. But I'll be a typical contrarian dick and also say that Meshuggah and Mastodon are fucking awesome.

alan nagsworth

  • even the bombs and scarecrows will sing
Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #47 on: April 22, 2013, 06:02:31 PM »
Since when does "most metal" address that subject matter? I think you're doing metal a disservice by allowing that other music you mentioned to be labeled as "metal".

McFlymo

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #48 on: April 22, 2013, 06:18:07 PM »
I probably don't listen to enough metal to have made that statement, but I feel I've heard enough of it to know that it's hilarious nonsense, which is nearly exclusively made my white guys and a lot of the tough guy postering in metal, with their obsession with strength and dominance says a lot about internal issues with identity, self-image possibly relating to gender. I'm no expert but, like a lot of nasty homophobic rap, a lot of macho metal bullshit screams to me that there's a lot of protesting a bit too much.

Actually, the thing is: I like metal for the technical playing, the sound, the energy, all that. I just don't like the vocals, lyrics, cheesy image that goes with it most of the time.


Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #49 on: April 22, 2013, 06:37:57 PM »
All Summer Long by Kid Rock is a bit of a catch-all

Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #50 on: April 22, 2013, 06:46:30 PM »
The whole genre? Or just when you play what you think is reggae?

Almost every reggae song I've heard has that same 4/4 beat, staccato guitar playing on the off beat, etc. Maybe I need to hear more reggae, and I'm sure there are exceptions, but I've yet to hear anything which has really stretched the genre. I should add though, that I don't think there's anything particularly wrong with that, as these things seem to define the genre. It just doesn't seem like there's much inventiveness going on with it.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2013, 07:10:27 PM by El Unicornio, mang »

Subtle Mocking

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #51 on: April 22, 2013, 06:51:36 PM »
Have you tried dub?

Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #52 on: April 22, 2013, 06:59:18 PM »
Yep, and I prefer what I've heard to straight reggae. (And I don't dislike straight reggae, I just think I would go crazy if I had to listen to nothing but reggae for a whole day)

Subtle Mocking

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #53 on: April 22, 2013, 07:00:09 PM »
Yeah, agreed.

Kane Jones

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #54 on: April 22, 2013, 07:06:17 PM »
I just think I would go crazy if I had to listen to nothing but reggae for a whole day

This applies to any genre of music for me. Variety and all that..

chand

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #55 on: April 22, 2013, 07:42:50 PM »
That bit in Intergalactic is great though. Cheeky myth-making and a fun way of changing up the song. I think it is very much not lazy

Isn't that bit in Intergalactic a reference to the "MmmmmmmDROP!" bit from their own 'The New Style' off 'Licensed To Ill', as famously sampled on The Pharcyde's 'Drop'? I guess you could consider that sort of self-referencing lazy but hip-hop is deliberately rife with it. I just listened to 'The New Style' and just listening to the first 20 seconds the intro was sampled by J Dilla on 'Donuts' and the '4 and 3 and 2 and 1' bit was heavily referenced in a song I forget the name of on Felt's (the other Felt's) "A Tribute To Lisa Bonet".

Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #56 on: April 22, 2013, 07:56:39 PM »
Actually, you know what?  I'm just going to say it.

The fade-out.  Fucking finish writing your song, ya dicks.  You manage to do it when you perform them live[nb]though it would be very funny to see a band pulling off a fade-out live[/nb], so do it on the records too.

Povidone

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #57 on: April 22, 2013, 08:29:49 PM »
In recent metal subgenres (especially ones with -core at the end), "breakdowns" are pretty much ubiquitous and incredibly lazy.  They always occur about a minute before the end of the song and they're almost always terrible.  Like this compilation of shit:  http://youtu.be/V2exWxhIhu8?t=14s

But you occasionally get a good one like this:  http://youtu.be/4mMDPrHcmfM?t=3m20s and really great ones in songs like this:  http://youtu.be/nvCwvfGJq_k?t=1m55s (technically not breakdowns, but close enough)

Nobody cares, mind, okay yeah.

I'm with you on this one, in fact I'll go further and say that all metal breakdowns (including the ones you've listed there as good) are irredeemably shit and a complete waste of time to listen to, to play, to write to have even considered putting in in the first place.

Thing is, they actually sound quite complicated, timing wise, so I can't understand why anyone would go to the effort of bollixing their song to a fare thee well just to crowbar one of the fuckers in.

I've had raging arguments with many a metalhead about this, some take it an inevitable part of the genre, which is presumably why it still happens. Others actively enjoy the aural torture. After experiencing a pal exclaim proudly "There's a band who's entire music is just breakdowns" I realized I was failing to even grasp the basics of the issue and found it within myself to stop caring.

But still, now and again a careless remark or a post like yours Noodle Lizard, reminds me that this thing exists, the aural equivalent of being wined and dined at a michelin starred restaurant where just before you've finished your plate the remainder of the food is scraped into a blender and then flung at your face in big, sticky, pointless lumps.

Povidone

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #58 on: April 22, 2013, 08:34:15 PM »
I should probably post a genuine lazy songwriting technique, er... inserting the word love into a song and repeating it to fill space. I was in a band with a guy who used to do it in almost every song, no word of a lie. I've had a listen to stuff he's done since and he's still at it.

Birdie

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Re: Lazy songwriting techniques
« Reply #59 on: April 22, 2013, 09:14:03 PM »
Things being "On fire" in songs.


Bruce Springteen's I'm on Fire is one of the creepiest songs I've ever heard (and played on the uke it really brings out the creepiness).

As for King's of Leon Sex on Fire ...well, I'm sure someone's mentioned how uncomfortable that sounds.