Rock has been declared dying or dead at least a dozen times in the last sixty years. The obituaries were written when Elvis went into the army; when the Beatles broke up; during the dark days of disco; when synthesizers were everywhere in 1981; at the height of New Kids on the Block madness; when hip hop was ascendant in the 90s; when turntables outsold guitars around 2000; and when electronica was The Next Big Thing.
I could go on, but you get the idea.
This latest supposed death knell came as the mainstream discovered how many kids were into EDM and how much money DJs were making. Others pointed to the dearth of rock records on the singles charts and how pop ruled the earth.
“Rock is OVER,” the doomsayers said, “As a major cultural force, rock is passe.”
Well, a funny thing happened on the way to the end of 2013: rock didn’t die. Again.
While it’s true that we don’t see the rock blockbusters that we once did–hell, no one is selling records in those quantities anymore–this is hardly an indicated that the genre should just lie down and wait for the meat wagon to take to the mortuary. In fact, there were plenty of very good rock releases in 2013 that point to things being rather healthy.
Salon picks up the thread: