Music

Corduroy share an essay on the fluidity of genre in modern music

Corduroy are making songs that live free from restraint. Lucky for us, the NZ band have given us a further insight into their music-making.

If you haven’t wrapped your ears around I’m So Bored yet, the latest single from indie heartbreakers Corduroy, then you’re seriously missing out. A warm and dreamy track that brings a pop feel into the band’s traditional neo-soul roots, the single proves that Corduroy moves independently of genre and all the confines that come with siloing your sound.

Fresh off the release, the band were kind enough to share an essay on the very subject; analysing the role of genre in modern music and their choice to incorporate different styles into their practice.

Corduroy

We’ve decided to focus on the broad concept of genre, how we have never managed to snugly fit into one, and why genre is becoming less and less important with new progress in music consumption. We, as a band, are all derived from very different musical backgrounds and our playing styles are eclectic towards one another.

For example; Rosie (lead singer) draws inspiration in her lyricism and vocal style from female soul greats and more modern neo-soul singers, such as Lianne La Havas. Rafe Swan (drummer) is from a jazz background and studies at the NZ School of Music in Wellington. Jacob Gasser (sax) is also from a jazz/ theory background. Riley Barrett ( Bass) learnt bass in a rock/ hard rock style, which carries into his playing. Simon Kenrick (keyboard) has a style likened to the child of disco and lo-fi. Will Cole (guitar) has a style which is similar to ’70s funk musicians, such as Parliament-Funkadelic and Nile Rodgers.

The result of this eclectic mix is, naturally, an eclectic style and sound which makes it extremely difficult to place our music into a specific genre.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Corduroy. (@thebandcorduroydot)

An upside to not having a specific genre is the liberty to write any songs in any genre we want. When someone brings a new idea to band practise, we never shut it down immediately because it sounds different or is not quite in line with our signature sound. This is because we don’t really have a signature sound. Instead, we try and embrace the unfamiliar and write something different. It’s never “that song isn’t quite us” but more like, “that’s a ripsnorter of a song!”

We think that the construct of genre in music is becoming less and less definitive or important to listeners in the new age of streaming platforms. The Spotify Daily Mix is pretty damn accurate and can compile four personalised playlists for you every day, which definitely draws in music from a wide range of different genres. But really, a good song is a good song, regardless of genre.

“Genre is becoming less and less relevant to listeners too due to the wide access consumers have to music due to streaming platforms,” our guitarist Will Cole once said. “No one has to commit to buying a physical album now, so people are much more willing and able to listen to different kinds of music.”

Because of the accessibility of music today, it’s extremely easy to flit through genres, instead of having to blindly invest in an album that you only like a few songs of. Streaming has allowed music consumption to become extremely personal and therefore break down the confines of genre.

Check out I’m So Bored here