The cycle of music is something that is pretty hard to point out where it switches. The only real indicator of how music will sound next is if a big artist from another genre goes out and does something else in another genre. Typically, this kicks off a “new” sound. For the last few years, Rap, Trap Rap, and Pop have been huge focal points for the sound of music in this landscape. That seems to be changing, however.
Not only have artists like MGK, Lil Pump, and Doja Cat spoken up about changing music and some have totally changed their genres – but a lot of people have started becoming desensitized to the current cycle of music. While I’m a huge fan of Trap Rap/Rap/Pop, it all has started to sound very similar and it seems like there’s not much substance left in the genre as every song is becoming the same words to the same beat, which honestly hurts me to say because it’s a genre that I care deeply about.
Now, this does happen to every genre eventually. Taking a look back into the 1990’s Grunge era, the same thing started to happen. You had your big bands such as Nirvana, Alice In Chains, Soundgarden, Pearl Jam, Smashing Pumpkins, and Red Hot Chili Peppers, to name a few, all sounded different, but once they became huge, other bands hopped on the trend and just totally started to manufacture the sound over and over again.
We’re just about thirty years removed from the Grunge era and it may be coming back in a cycle that’s due. Of course, I don’t see it being the same. I do believe that auto-tune and pitch correction is here to stay and so are polished songs. If anything, if Grunge does make some sort of come back – it will most likely sound like Post Grunge or arena rock. I really just don’t see anything raw and unfiltered going mainstream in 2023 and beyond.
Instead of bands like Nirvana and Alice In Chains inspiring bands, I see it as more of bands such as Three Days Grace and Breaking Benjamin inspiring the next era of Alternative music, which naturally, will make the “grunge sound” more polished and “evolved”.
Currently, we are seeing a Pop-punk revival through Machine Gun Kelly and Doja Cat has said she wants to do a Hardcore Punk album. Lil Pump also released a Punk Rock song, which is very raw, so it does seem like there is some movement in the ethos of what’s to come next. The barriers for music are really only held together by the ones at the top currently. All it would really take is one artist to make a Grunge song for it to totally explode into the music scene.