The Crackler. The Scraper. The exploder.
All the way back in 1914, in Milan, Futuristic Music (quite aptly named, I must say) debuted a concert. Now, little anecdotes, such as these, are remembered for creating great impressions. The Avant-garde inventor and musician, Luigi Russolo, conducted the concert with his “instruments” – the Crackler, the Scraper, the Exploder. The concert must have made some tremendous impact, because the stage smelled of rotten eggs and vegetables.
What people didn’t know then was that Russolo has planted the seeds for a futuristic genre in music – Dubstep.
Dubstep found its way in the world in the early 1920’s. Wait – some sources say 1990’s, by a Jamaican reggae influence. Hold on – I read somewhere Dubstep in clubs caught on not until 2000’s. Er… wasn’t it originally UK drum and bass garage music? Exactly. I’m as confused as you are. It looks like the advent of Dubstep is as chaotic as the music itself.
Dubstep is the kind of genre that has the characteristic – “wub-wub-wub—bzzzz-beep-beep-wurrrr” sound. It is aimed at creating a pounding effect on the chest cavity and is harsh for unprepared ears. Dubstep’s simple theory is that we can break sound into fundamental entities and recreate it into music. According to PBS Arts, Dubstep is an “aural creativity” and is an “embrace of inharmonious sounds”. In other words, one is no more a slave to conservative instruments. In other words, Dubstep is really just… noise. However, keeping criticism at bay, Dubstep has taken over the realm in an insanely overwhelming way. Ever since the 21st century dawned on mankind, Dubstep was everywhere – clubs, parties, concerts. Everything seems to gravitate towards it – and I don’t say that lightly. Dubstep purists will surely agree with me that Dubstep has suffered some radical changes with pop singers “mutilating” the true essence of the genre. Now Dubstep is not recognized as something different from mainstream, but has become mainstream itself. We now have Dubstep remixes of every song I seem to know – even India’s famous “Chhaiyya Chhaiyya” – has a Dubstep remix!
Nevertheless, Dubstep artists seemed to have got something right. Dubstep music seems to have caught on and has become one of the mainstream anthems for the youth of the world. Rock ’n’ roll, unfortunately, is out of the picture and Dubstep along with other electronic forms of music now define the postmodern era with innovation alongside a futuristic. After all, didn’t someone say change is the only constant entity in the universe?
P.S. – Dubstep fans who say Skrillex is the ultimate, go home.
Anuj V. Bhilocha (Mechanical)
Illustration by Jayanth Vadyala (Architecture)