#1 Posted by bassman2112 (837 posts) -

Gavin Castleton has been making music for around a decade and a half now and is a super intelligent dude. His lyrics are really astounding and the quality of his work is second to none.

Check his song Lemon out. It's progressive hip-hop talking about how messed up the hip-hop scene/culture is - it's definitely one of the most interesting songs I know.

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#2 Posted by Gargantuan (1882 posts) -

Bah! Flight of the Conchords is the only band that has made rap (or maybe it's hip-hop, have no idea what's the difference) that I like.

#3 Posted by Tylea002 (2295 posts) -

@Gargantuan: We're vincible.

And OP, that FOTC song is a better rap and satire than lemon. Also, he's got fairly pathetic lyrics. When you state your obvious, stagnant message at the end of the song, you're failing. Seriously, the most stagnant message of all is "things aren't as good as they used to be."

So yeah, just listen to Flight Of The Conchords. Those dudes are genius.

#4 Posted by scalpel (314 posts) -

That was about as "intelligent" as Immortal Technique.

#5 Posted by zudthespud (3281 posts) -

I enjoy music that is well constructed musically first and foremost, a lot of my favourite music is missing vocals or has very basic vocals. I think that there are other forms of media that are far superior for conveying a message than music.

Also, starting a thread to post a link to a video you uploaded on youtube is kind of frowned on round these parts.

#6 Posted by bassman2112 (837 posts) -

@scalpel: @Tylea002: So you're saying "It's great to see African Americans giving homosexuals, a people who are suffering similar prejudices and blind hate the same opportunity to assimilate its own branding terms" is less intelligent than "you could have said something nice about my professor robes" then?

I'm assuming you guys aren't musicians. I enjoy FOTC as much as anyone, but have yet to experience anything by them that has affected my view on anything. Gavin's music is incredibly skillful in its craft, I have an extremely hard time thinking of anyone who could write something nearly as relevant as he does - and this was written 8 years ago.

#7 Posted by Godlyawesomeguy (6398 posts) -

I usually just listen to Postmaster P.

#8 Posted by Tylea002 (2295 posts) -

@Bassman2112: I'm a musician, nice assumption.

This Gavin fellow, you ain't praising him as a musician, you are praising him as a wordsmith. And intelligent does not mean the weight of the concept; someone can talk about weighty issues in un-intelligent and obvious ways, which is what Gavin's lyrics are. His genius boils down to "Bad things are bad, we should be less bad," which is a noble sentiment which I agree with, but it doesn't make him a genius songwriter. FOTC deal in really smart parody and expertly written pop songs - less weighty concepts delivered in a far more intelligent form.

Also, Profiteroles.

#9 Posted by AlexW00d (6275 posts) -

Preachy music that also isn't very good is the worst.

#10 Posted by GunslingerPanda (4757 posts) -

This is the same kind of "intelligence" that morons speak about when Banksy comes up.

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#11 Posted by bassman2112 (837 posts) -

It's unfortunate that you guys are so easy to start an argument when there really shouldn't be one, and then act like a bunch of vultures to prove your superiority in taste.

I could have posted one of his songs about suicide, or his anger with being treated like a lesser human being; but I chose to do one that's more accessible and you're all extremely quick to say "pfft this is dumb." Even this 'more accessible' track is pretty weighty, and musically complicated (I'd like to see you guys transcribe some of the time signature changes and rhythmic things he's doing) than most anything you'll listen to on your own time.

If you guys are comfortable saying that Gavin's a moron when he says "It's great to see such a glaring example of bigotry be so ruthlessly overused in an art form founded by a race so plagued by racial slurs that it had to employ them in order to diffuse them" and to "Jump out of the ditch, challenge a listener, motivate the youth to help themselves, turn music from distraction to action - Life's too short to stay in four/four" then so be it. I'm not angry nor am I here to start a fight - I'm just disappointed that you guys aren't willing to open your mind to new things that are truly interesting and impassioned.

I'm flagging my own post just because I really don't want to see this degrade into a fight of taste, that was not the purpose of this post at all. Disappointing, GB.

#12 Posted by donkeyscrotes (69 posts) -

Check this out:

#13 Posted by FiestaUnicorn (1576 posts) -

If you think that's good, you'll enjoy every single song ever done ever by Linkin Park. EVER.

#14 Posted by Everyones_A_Critic (6299 posts) -

A hip-hop song about how the scene has placed its focus on the wrong ideas and how mainstream hip-hop has been watered down lyrically? HOW ORIGINAL!

Nah but seriously it's not bad I guess.

#15 Posted by Tylea002 (2295 posts) -

@Bassman2112: Telling someone, in your lyrics, to "challenge" the listener is doing the opposite of that. I know you proclaim him to be a hugely intelligent musical genius, but in the song presented, there's no evidence of this. Just because he makes morally sound points in his songs does not make his songs good. Observe, a highly intelligent song, complete with a 4/4 catchy beat and hilarious lyrics, with a meaning which is clear when you listen to it, but doesn't tell the audience what to think.

That's right.

#16 Posted by bassman2112 (837 posts) -

@Tylea002: It's because, in that moment, he's speaking to people who create music. As someone who works with sound as a living, those particular words are fairly profound. There's plenty of evidence of a lot of extremely inspired & well formed opinions in this song, but I guess it isn't meant for/appreciated by this community.

I'm not going to argue though, everyone has their own tastes and if you feel the need to feel smug in "winning" (I take that from your didactic little "that's right" at the end) then sure, you've won - go home happy and put the trophy on your mantel. I couldn't care less since I was never fighting. Music isn't a competition.

#17 Posted by GunslingerPanda (4757 posts) -

@Bassman2112 said:

It's unfortunate that you guys are so easy to start an argument when there really shouldn't be one, and then act like a bunch of vultures to prove your superiority in taste.

I could have posted one of his songs about suicide, or his anger with being treated like a lesser human being; but I chose to do one that's more accessible and you're all extremely quick to say "pfft this is dumb." Even this 'more accessible' track is pretty weighty, and musically complicated (I'd like to see you guys transcribe some of the time signature changes and rhythmic things he's doing) than most anything you'll listen to on your own time.

If you guys are comfortable saying that Gavin's a moron when he says "It's great to see such a glaring example of bigotry be so ruthlessly overused in an art form founded by a race so plagued by racial slurs that it had to employ them in order to diffuse them" and to "Jump out of the ditch, challenge a listener, motivate the youth to help themselves, turn music from distraction to action - Life's too short to stay in four/four" then so be it. I'm not angry nor am I here to start a fight - I'm just disappointed that you guys aren't willing to open your mind to new things that are truly interesting and impassioned.

I'm flagging my own post just because I really don't want to see this degrade into a fight of taste, that was not the purpose of this post at all. Disappointing, GB.

Expressing an opinion isn't starting an argument.

This entire post is an attempt by you to "prove your superiority in taste."

Go ahead, post one of his songs about suicide.

No, this song is really not "weighty" as the subject is so overexposed that it no longer holds any weight. It's certainly not musically complicated; That's a laughable assertion.

Why are you making assumptions about what people listen to on their own time? It's incredibly condescending (as is 99% of this post) and you're once again trying to "prove your superiority in taste" by essentially saying that what you listen to on your own time holds more value than what I listen to on my own time.

I didn't call him a moron; I said this is "intelligent" in the same way that morons think Banksy's graffiti is "intelligent." Those lyrics lack any semblance of subtlety or prose, instead try to force his own values and ideals upon upon his audience while armed with a sledgehammer. Sloppy.

"I'm just disappointed that you guys aren't willing to open your mind to new things that are truly interesting and impassioned." This is so hilariously condescending again. What is "interesting" about it, exactly? There is nothing new or different about this song. Impassioned? So what? Everyone's passionate about something.

Don't try to belittle and talk down to people because they hold a different opinion to you on something so insignificant as a song.

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#18 Edited by Napalm (9020 posts) -

This would have been better if you just said, "hey, do you guys like this?"

I'll go back to listening to Accept now.

EDIT: Because Accept's awesome! STALINGRAD!

#19 Posted by PeasantAbuse (5138 posts) -

I don't like this.

#20 Posted by bassman2112 (837 posts) -

@GunslingerPanda:

Sigh... I'm really not here to argue, it really irks me that I keep having to post that. Just like before what I was doing before, I'm just going to respond to what you've said that I find incorrect, and I'd be happy if we could leave it at that.

"This entire post is an attempt by you to..." No, no it really isn't. I want to get more people to know an artist who has been around for a long time but isn't recognized. I don't believe Gavin is the epitome of all things musical, I just respect the guy a lot and think he does some absolutely amazing work. I want people who otherwise wouldn't have the chance to know his stuff to hear it.

I'm skipping over some of your more obviously flame-inducing assertions, and skipping to something that is wrong. Stepping away from the conversation purely about lyrical content, this is incredibly complicated music. Take the section from 0:24 to 1:00 - the amount of time signature changes that feel smooth is amazing, writing like that is extremely difficult to do.

Skipping inflammatory stuff again, I'm sorry but you are completely incorrect again. To say there is "nothing new or different" is completely dishonest. I know very few songs that do as much stylistically as this one accomplishes within just 3 minutes.

If you consider something as "insignificant as a song" as being worthy to write everything you just did to me, then I think it isn't as insignificant as you claim it to be.

Now let's please just leave it there. This thread has completely derailed from my original intent, and I just lost a bit of respect for this community - I liked it better when people showing/trying out new things here was welcomed rather than berated.

#21 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -

@Bassman2112: The first mistake you made was your topic title. "ENJOY INTELLIGENT MUSIC?!?!" Dude, really? You already pissed off a lot of people just by that alone, and then immediately going on the defensive about how we won't, "just open your minds, man!" was the icing on the cake.

And as other people have pointed out: there's nothing new about that. That's like me posting an old school metal song about a critical view of science and religion and going, "like smart thrash metal?!" and then berating people when they disagree. You can't force shit on people, and now your attitude has only irked us further.

#22 Posted by xMP44x (2193 posts) -
@Napalm said:
EDIT: Because Accept's awesome! STALINGRAD!
Yes.
I listened to that song just now and was like "Hey, it's not bad".... then they did the cover of the Soviet anthem. Well now, I'd be lying if I said I was anything other than impressed.
#23 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -

@xMP44x:

#24 Posted by bassman2112 (837 posts) -

@Napalm:

Alright, and with the comment you just posted I say "fuck this." I'm leaving this community for a while.

Be opinionated, I don't care. My intent was never to push something onto people. If you're reading everything I post as if I'm yelling, okay, I can see your point but I really truly am not angry or didactic. My tone while responding is one of being completely flabbergasted about why everyone is getting so upset over my trying to show people something they haven't heard before.

I'm getting defensive because people stopped talking about the song and directly started talking about me and how my tastes are inferior. As one of the first replies, "and OP, that..." (go back and read it for yourself) What I was saying was never "just open your minds, man" - it was stating my opinion, my views and being dumbfounded by the fact that multiple posts are being so flagrantly rude at me. None of this is about the original post anymore, it's just about how wrong I am and how everyone has the moral high ground above this guy who is obviously so self-centered that he only cares about his own opinions.

Hence my "fuck that." Pat yourselves on the back, guys. You just drove someone out of the community who's been here for years and just wanted to share something with you guys.

#25 Posted by Cloudenvy (5891 posts) -

@Bassman2112: ...*hesitantly pats self on back*

#26 Posted by Darkstorn (465 posts) -

Music tastes are relative and there isn't such a thing as 'good' or 'bad' music.

Research suggests that people are most attracted to time signatures of music that they listened to as a youth or in their teen years.

Good music is nothing more than brain chemistry mang.

#27 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -

@Bassman2112: I was actually just referencing your second post, where you were talking about how people weren't opening up their minds. I'm also not saying you were pissed off and screaming, I was just saying you were directly challenging people in a condescending manner whether you meant it or not. Clearly you rubbed people the wrong way, and instead of maybe trying to understand where those with legitimate complaints were coming from, or ignoring it and letting the topic play out on its own, you decided to immediately go on the defensive and interject, as you viewed some posters as "close minded."

Also, nobody here is going to throw you a pity party.

#28 Edited by envane (1163 posts) -

@Napalm: just keep refining your poorly thought out criticism until it stops making you sound like an asshole, blah blah .. i can state a series of events from an objective viewpoint too .. but that wont actually do anything except piss off the op , or make me feel like more of a wordsmith or something ..so whats in it for you .. defending the little man that bassman is so heartlessly crushing with his massive ego ? wtf ? i think he knows why this thread went to shit ,and there you are just stoking the fire.

#29 Posted by Akrid (1356 posts) -

@Bassman2112: While I don't really think music is the best medium to do it in, I can appreciate artists who want to convey a specific, cerebral message. But I don't like this guy. And I'm not trying to prove any sort of superiority here, I'd simply like to engage you in conversation what makes music with a complex message good. I can explain thoroughly why I don't like this style.

To me, it seems like he's broadcasting his opinion as hard and as harsh as he can, and as if it's the only truth. There's no humility, no "Well, this is how I see it". A lot of his songs feel extremely self-involved as well, telling stories about his life. Which, yeah, is common in music, but he's often doing it in such an obvious way, whereas a lot of other artists obfuscate it and bury it deep down. Blatancy when applied to art makes it less artful.

What's more, when I read his lyrics, I just... Think he's a bad person? A lot of his songs are about relationships he's had, which is all fine and good, but the way he writes about it just comes off in a really bad way. One is very literally about him bangin' and the girl loving his skills. One is about him sexin' up his co-worker, one is about a disgustingly literal comparison between chess and love, one is praising his own song composition with lyrics like "Forget your preconceived notions of song structure"... These do not come off well to me. Or others, it seems. From that perspective, you can probably see how applying the word intelligent to this guy would rile people up. Anyway, I've just heard of him, so maybe you have something to convince me that he's an alright guy - because I do like the music itself. I certainly don't mean to invalidate your own personal taste by telling you my own, but when you mention conveying messages, two guys spring to mind:

David Bazan has made several albums straight up attacking religion. What makes his message more digestible to me is that he distances himself from it. Never does he tell a straight anecdote about himself. He conveys it through allusions and wordplay that service the song before the message. He pulls off something remarkable in making an album that, by nature, should be preachy, not. At least in my eyes. There's a clear message, but it still needs to be interpreted and deciphered.

And then there's this guy:

He's very similar to Gavin in that he talks about himself and his experiences almost exclusively in his music and there's little room for interpretation, but to me this works better then Gavin's because he serves it with a heaping helping of self-doubt and vulnerability. That song is totally all about him, and it's totally expounding his personal philosophy, but it's steeped in so much self-deprecation that it doesn't seem self-aggrandising. You listen to that and you can tell that he's simply trying to show you what he's personally learned through his own life experiences. It's the same with Bazan really. Hard to Be is phrased in a way that implicates "I don't understand", as opposed to Gavin's "You don't understand".

As far as intelligence goes, their compositions might not be genius, and their message may not be as 'important', but these guys at least convey their message with a little more subtlety and grace - and that, to me, is intelligent above all else.

#30 Edited by Aegon (5639 posts) -

I can't even listen to the song on youtube. It says it's no longer available. Can't find it anywhere else.

Edit: As for songs with messages, MJ had plenty.

#31 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -

@envane said:

@Napalm: just keep refining your poorly thought out criticism until it stops making you sound like an asshole, blah blah .. i can state a series of events from an objective viewpoint too .. but that wont actually do anything except piss off the op , or make me feel like more of a wordsmith or something ..so whats in it for you .. defending the little man that bassman is so heartlessly crushing with his massive ego ? wtf ? i think he knows why this thread went to shit ,and there you are just stoking the fire.

Haha, what? A two day-old bump? That was hilarious, duder. Probably not worth it but eh, whatever works.