The history of music is littered with those moments that changed the cause of its evolution. As music scholars endlessly debate the origins of this genre or movement, it’s difficult to pinpoint exactly what sparked certain trends.
That said, there are those moments that are universally accepted as being groundbreaking in reorienting the cause of musical history. When Prince released Purple Rain in 1984, the album’s content sparked mass hysteria and started the musician censorship movement.
When Madonna’s wardrobe went wrong at the 1984 MTV Music Awards, it caused a scandal but catapulted her to iconic status. And, when NWA released F * ck tha Police, it sent shockwaves through the hip hop world, making rap the new protest movement.
The evolution of guitar-based music has been eventful (strongly intentional pun) and thank goodness rock was never about conformity and the moments that challenge the status quo are the ones that make the interesting music again.
These are some of the most defining events in rock history, the moments that spawned movements, sparked outrage and spurred innovation. These are the times for which we are collectively grateful. For the majority…
The untimely death of Ian Curtis and the disbandment of Joy Division were a tragic moment in rock history.
Celebrated as the new sound of the British alternative music scene, Joy Division made a strong impression, with their catchy bass melodies mingled with the Gothic undertones of Curtis’ lyricism. This music was energetic, you could jump into it, but it was dark …
The real weight of the heavy subtext behind the music of Joy Division came true in May 1980 when Ian Curtis died by suicide, months before the release of his band’s second album.
But, from its ashes was born the phoenix which would become the spearhead of alternative dance music of the 1980s. New order.
The fusion of guitar-led new-wave music with electro and acid house resulted in this wonderful moment in the mid-1980s, aptly dubbed the “Madchester” scene. The Stone Roses and Happy Mondays were the conductors of that moment, leading a crazy waltz of ecstasy-infused chaos as they set the stage for the Britpop era a decade later.
Ian Curtis may have been taken too young, but his legacy sent sound shockwaves through the rock world.