Every once in a while Yetu gets the urge to go all academic on you and do some research about a topic, normally related to EDM. The first article, “I Like Electro (You Should Too)“, was an informative article about Electronic music and it served as the opening article for Drop-Your-Drink. The second article was related to the first, it was about Skrillex, and the case was “Everybody Hates Skrillex.” This time she’s complaining about how mainstream Dubstep has become.

Courtesy of 8tracks.com

I need to complain and say mean stuff about how Dubstep has become mainstream. Every few years Pop music adopts a new style of music. When I was a kid, Faithless was all the rage and Trance was in. Kick forward a few years and we had the House vs. Trance wars and in the end House came up on top because of David Guetta. It pains me to have to deal with Dubstep being mainstream. This post is about why this happened and what to do about it.

Why has Dubstep gone mainstream?

Relating to the “I Like Electro (You Should Too)” and “Everybody Hates Skrillex” posts you will easily gather that the main players to blame, in my opinion, are Lady Gaga and Skrillex. In “I Like Electro (You Should Too)“, I wrote about how she revived Electropop. In 2008, she was the biggest Electropop artist in the world. Ah! It’s Electropop, you say, not Dubstep. The point is, she started a trend. Soon after she said, “Just Dance”, we had artists like Owl City (crap that song got irritating), La Roux, Calvin Harris and Empire of the Sun enter the game. She reminded people about synth. It became, “Oh my gosh, synth! Wow! Let me add an Electro beat! WOW! Is that a bass line? Gosh!”

So we moved from synthy-pop to bassier forms of Electro. Blame that bitch.

Is “Fireflies” by Owl city stuck in your head? Good! Suffer with me!

I like Skrillex but he hasn’t helped the problem because he’s become very popular. The music he produces isn’t characterised by standard Dubstep “rules”. He revolutionised the genre and changed it so much that he has become famous for Brostep. However, mainstream bitches don’t know the difference.
“Ermahgerd! It’s Skrillex! He makes the best Dub music! I love him.” (Please note the use of “Dub” instead of Dubstep.)
I mean if Korn can claim they started Dubstep eons ago and do an entire album with Skrillex, even though they started the genre, then we have a problem. And further, if Pitbull can throw in some rubbish Dubstep section in his songs and we all know how original he is then you know we’ve hit rock bottom.

How to make a Pitbull song: 1) Say “Dale” 2) Mumble 3 Spanish words 3) List 4 cities
Photo courtesy of exploredia.com

I have a problem with Dubstep being so mainstream because the quality has decreased. Everyone thinks they can be a DJ. I’m going to sound like an old person but I also think you should stick to what you’re good at. I don’t want to hear auto-tuned Usher just because it sounds better with the beat. I want to hear him sing. I don’t want to hear Dubstep at a Goldfish gig, just because they’re playing around with it. I want to hear that jazzy House. I can’t help but feel a bit betrayed when artists go out of their way to be mainstream.

Mainstream radio stations are just promoting the damn cause. I will use 5FM and BBC Radio 1 as points of reference because they were both nominated for the Most Influential International Radio Station for the 2011 year at the World Radio Summit Awards. BBC Radio 1 took the award. These radio stations play mainstream music but both have hours dedicated to Dubstep playlists.
Now, picture this. Mainstream radio station + really big sections of the world’s radio listenership (if I can say that) = you should be shitting yourself. Mind you, I had to be reminded by Phizicist to mention that BBC Radio 1 was the 1st mainstream radio station to play Dubstep and that was through Mary Anne Hobbs’ show in 2006. I’m just going to add that BBC Radio 1 Xtra has about 2 hours of Dubstep a day for listeners. That’s a lot of people reached.

I knew there was a problem when I saw wife beater boys at Town Hall this year and the sudden influx of kids, people younger than 18, has worried me. These kids and wife beater boys used to party at places like Tiger Tiger, Ty’s and H2O. Sometimes I feel just like Capulet in Romeo and Juliet because of those people. I feel like saying, “What noise is this? Give me my long sword, ho!”

What can we do about it?

Besides attempting to eliminate thousands of “dubstreamers” – mainstream Dubstep loving folk – in a flash explosion I have proposed a few more ludicrous options.

  • Take the Dubstep scene as underground as it can go, we have to become mole people.
  • Vote for classical music on 5FM’s Top 40.
  • Become the hipsters of Dubstep, dubsters, and as soon as an artist goes mainstream say, “I knew that person before they were mainstream. I’m going to go find some other obscure producer to listen to.”
  • Follow Benga and whatever he’s doing because he has given up on Dubstep and he’s one of the godfathers of the genre. If he’s left then he knows what he’s doing.
  • Hop on the Post-Dubstep express before Skrillex is featured in an oldies compilation.
In the massive amounts of research I had to do for this post I came across an article posted in May 2010. The author complained about how mainstream Dubstep was becoming. That person had no cooking clue what was coming in the form of Britney Spears, Rihanna, Skrillex, Nero and even Justin Bieber. The thing that makes me sad is that I don’t think there’s anything we can really do about it. We are on a trajectory to a place where girls that wear heels are allowed into my parties and jocks will come and rule the day, until one day it will just end and they will move onto something else.
I will wait in hope for that day, salvation.