Changes since MC5
Hello. Welcome to the sixth sordid entry in the Music Contest lineage.
"Six years, already?", I can hear it now. Every year the scene either
gets smaller, bigger, higher, or lower quality (depending on your
viewpoint, of course). One of the yearly highlights, though, is the Music
Contest. MC5 was easily one of the most well-organized competitions in
recent years. Snowman's scripts and ftp servers and automated
vote-tallying made for a very clean process. Whether or not you agreed
with all of the rules and regulations, one must admit that it continually
improves from year to year. It's a small morsel of wholesome goodness in
this big decadent chocolate cake we call the "music scene".
I wish I had some deep insights into the meaning of it all. I do know,
however, that whether we like it or not, we are slowly merging into the
"internet music scene", whatever the hell that is. Music and Computers
has a column called the "MOD Philez". WinAMP plays not only MP3's, but
S3M's and IT's. A lot of commercial games are using IT/XM/MOD technology
(even Nintendo 64 console games). It seems we are reduced to the sum of
our technology. Tracking has become another way to sequence samples,
along with conventional MIDI-driven sequencers and hardware samplers. As
we find "commercial" acceptance, we also get lost in the mainstream.
For a while it was different. There was that brief period where tracking
did push an envelope. It let people without access to expensive pro
equipment make really great sounding music. And simultaneously, the
"internet" was coming into being as a means of fast communication without
regards to distance. This allowed the music "scene" to penetrate a lot of
places where it could never get to before. Not surprisingly, a large
community began to develop, out of people who wanted to spread and share
their music with others. And also, I'm sure, there was a desire to
connect with other people who had the similar (insane, ridiculous,
all-consuming) desire to spend hours and hours of their lives in front of
a glowing screen making lots of synchronous noise.
Are those days over?
It's hard to say.
I went to The Hornet Archive the other day, because I hadn't been there in
a while. I figured I would catch up with what was going on. DemoNews was
gone. TraxWeekly hadn't released a new issue since early February. I
went onto IRC to try to find people. Most of the servers were dead. I
eventually did get to #trax, and there was barely anyone there. What
happened? Did everything dry up and wither away when I wasn't looking? I
do know that a lot of my scene friends ended up working for game
companies, or doing their own MIDI-based stuff, or devoting more time to
college, or getting married (eeks) or running off to foreign lands.
Is there hope?
MC5 had double the number of entries as MC4, which had quite a bit more
than MC3, and so on. The quality has certainly improved each year, and
it's gotten consistently more professional. It's the time of the year
when people submit their best work to the harshest judges of all: the
public. There is certainly nothing else like it. MC brings a certain
amount of professionalism and respectability to the music scene that you
don't get from a lot of other places. And you, dear reader, can be a part
of the process. Enter a song. Judge and comment the songs of others.
Get the word out. Share your visions with your fellow man. By doing
this, we revitalize ourselves and our tracking community.
Maybe the trend will continue. Maybe we can avoid being assimilated into
the digital music soup. There's only one way to find out.
Fight the end of the scene.
Support our collective dream with your MC6 entry.
Necros / Five Musicians
03 May 1998