When it comes to music, everybody has an opinion. After a quick look at sales charts, a peak on television and a little spin through the dial of my radio, it has become apparent that not everybody should.
In the dark ages before group functionality debuted on Newsvine, we - those of us with artful, sophisticated taste - had nowhere to turn. In the music tag we were adrift amid news of Britney Spears' new baby, Mariah Carey's new "album", and hip-hop's new feud. Cyberspace was quickly becoming some crowded college bar in which fellow patrons just wouldn't shut up about the role Bon Jovi played in defining rock and roll and how modern music doesn't have enough guitar solos. We saw that far foo many people are all too willing to accept whatever drivel the major labels decide to market to them. These "music fans", through sheer force of numbers, then subject the rest of the world to their bad taste. Horrible, horrible groups reach the tops of the sales charts. Their vapid, childish, unoriginal stylings become ubiquitous in American society offending the trained ears of those with, shall we say, more refined sensibilities. Fear not, average music listener. We, the audiophillic elite, do not begrudge you your inferior taste. We know you can't help it. You are like lost children casting about in an uncertain world and the major labels are the creepy guys in vans that offer you candy if you'll just get inside and sit on their lap.
Those days are over. Like Chris Hansen on To Catch a Predator we at Newsvine's own Independent Music Fund are here to rescue you. When group functionality rolled out on this site, the IMF was one of the first groups created. Indeed our long and storied history goes back to day 1 of group activity. We represent the apex of everything musical on Newsvine if not the entire internet.
Last Saturday I asked the IMF membership for their picks for the most over-rated bands of all time. They responded and over the course of the week we voted. Today, with this article, we are here to save you from yourselves. The bands listed here are the bands you somehow can't stop listening to despite their obvious (for lack of a better word) suckiness.
We know what you're saying. "What took you guys so long? Without you to lead the way we've been listening to some really bad music." We're sorry about that. We had this thing to go to. You just kind of slipped our minds. But we're here now and that's what's important.
Each submission is accompanied by the original author's rationale for inclusion on this list. If anyone else chimed in with something particularly memorable it's on there too, just for good measure. Don't worry, if you happen to love any band on this list we won't judge you for it. Just as long as you stop listening to them immediately, throw out their albums and buy yourself a subscription to Under the Radar.
10 - The Doors
Stacy Malbon writes, "Chugging a bottle of rum does not a rock genius make."
miasma adds, "Occasionally they were ok but it's all been played so damn much that I could just go the rest of my days not hearing The Doors. I thought Manzarek was a good producer and Morrison was an abysmal lyricist. At least he gave everyone in the band an equal share in the control of the music, thus ensuring we'd hear Led Zep in our Escalade adds and not the Doors,"
9 - Weezer
"Yes, we all loved Pinkerton and yes, The Blue Album made us feel cool to be geeky," started stolte-sawa. "But the heart of Weezer and the object of our sincere, nerdly affections, Rivers Cuomo, betrayed us all when he acceeded to the repugnance of fame and fortune, and obligingly surrendered every last scintillating drop of his integrity.
While Green was a shameless rehashing of Weezer's previous releases, it can hardly compete with the profane banailty of their 2005 release. Years of Cuomo's self-aggrandizing culminates in Make Believe's pitifully flaccid pop-rock, and has made Weezer a blemish on my high school soul; a proverbial loogie on the hornrims of good and honest dorks worldwide."
HonkyTonk adds, "It makes you think: 'Has Weezer been this bad this whole time, and we just didn't notice?' Scary."
Not to be outdone whatwasleft chimes in with, "Make Believe was so bad, my free copy threw itself out."
6 - John Mayer
"I don't know whether it's the sophomoric, fill-in-the-blank lyrics or the patronizingly smooth, crooning voice that sings them but I physically cringe every time I hear one of his songs. I shudder to think how many college CD collections sport several John Mayer records. I guess liking bad music is cool these days" says E to the Z.
For stolte-sawa, "It's the unsettling reality of a 28-year-old man singing about high school girls that turns me off. That, and the utterly uninspired chord progressions that would have the Monkees rolling in their...uh...waterbeds."
6 - John "Cougar" Mellencamp
Obleo states it simply. "Because if I have to hear a certain little ditty about Jack and Diane one more fucking time..."
6 - Phish
whatwasleft is baffled. "Random noodling. Giant Hot Dogs. Endless solos. Hundreds of thousands of fans??? I'm lost."
4 - Barenaked Ladies
"They have recorded one track and filled 7 albums with it," whatwasleft states. "Still they sell. This belongs on Unsolved Mysteries."
4 - U2
"Here's a controversial pick,"
HonkyTonk warns," but I'm sticking with it. If we're talking overrated, then this has to be the pick of the litter. No band has gotten more acclaim--even worship--for shopping around such egoism. My God, you'd think think sentimentality and pained vocals would be enough, but no, U2 will turn it up that extra notch: pure self-importance. I think they really believe they can save the world behind a pair of silly sunglasses with easily-digested rock music and clean, classy good-looks.
If its pretentious for Gordon Matthew Thomas Sumner to call himself Sting, what can you say about a band with two members sporting just one name--that's uncalled for. "
"Bono and the Edge are self-righteous twats. Agreed. The music stopped being relevant in the early 80's. And it never was really 'good.'"
"Completely agree. I want them to fall off the face of the earth and take all their albums with them.
Well, except "Boy". That album's awesome. But enough to catapult Bono to Jesus status? No way."
"Yeah, I love U2 but they are still overrated. The heart is a-bloom. Adam Clayton has been cramping my style since before I was born. Since I can't wear sunglasses indoors, it always comes off as pretentious for others to."
2 - Coldplay
E to the Z states, "In my head I see two British music executives sitting in a dark bar getting piss drunk.
One of them asks, "What do you get when you mix the worst parts of a good band (Radiohead) and the worst parts of an average band (U2), decrease the volume, subtract some emotion and sell it as something that's never been done?"
The other answers, "I dunno. Let's find out."
Either that, or the band is an ingenious ploy by the British Immigration and Nationality Directorate to discourage Americans from coming to England by creating the illusion that it's so boring over there that Coldplay is what passes as exciting and new. "
Obleo adds, "It pains me to give them any kind of credit, even when it's for outstanding work in the field of sucking."
2 - The Dave Mathews Band
E to the Z "always imagines that this five-piece from Charlottesville, Virginia is the band that glam rock fans turned to when introspection turned hip in the early '90s. Sure, it sounds deep but repeated listens reveal uninspired chording under horrifically irritating vocals. According to Wikipedia, Matthews originally envisioned writing songs for someone else to sing before deciding to take the microphone himself. There isn't a second thought in recent memory that I personally lament more. Doubtless, DMB fans hear the cutting edge in music when they listen to these records, but really the sum total of this band is repetitive, bland and safe. Please Dave, leave the jam band aesthetics to actual jam bands."
1 - Creed
Adam Hobson makes this case for the top band on the list.
"Where you may just not like another band's style, or find their vocals irritating, or music boring; Creed is the epitome of mediocre and so much more.
First, you add in the self-righteousness of lead singer Scott Stapp and their holier-than-thou brand of Christian rock. Second, they are a second generation post-grunge band, first generation post-grunge wasn't really all that good. Next, they take whatever feeling, emotion and innovation that was left in the post-grunge movement and whitewash it all to become the "ultimate radio-friendly" band. And last, during the late '90s their music was everywhere. The only thing worse than crappy mediocre music is crappy mediocre music that you cannot get away from.
Or to some it up really simply, they were Coldplay years before Coldplay existed."
Just as Prometheus gave fire to mankind, so the IMF gives this list to you. May it serve to lead you from the depths of mediocrity to the heights of musical enlightenment. You don't need to thank us, a good deed is its own reward. Just please, stop requesting Freebird at every live show you go to. It's really not that funny anymore.